Projected Draft Order to 14.

#38
If the Kings FO is holding on to Hield and trying to be competitive next season then I think Bey makes a lot of sense. He reminds me a bit of Shane Battier. Maybe a bit less sound defensively but with a bit more defensive potential. He and Barnes are a bit redundant (including both being below average rebounders for SF/PFs) but I don't think the team that picks Bey will look back with regret. There will be better players taken after him but his bust potential is pretty low IMO.

But I think the Kings are looking to tank. I think they want to trade Buddy for young players and/or picks along with guys on ending deals and I think they'd move Barnes if they could get back contracts that end sooner.

That being the case, I think they gamble on upside. Pokusevski would be the big risk reward gamble and I wouldn't be surprised if they are targeting him.

These aren't necessarily guys I'd pick, but how I could see things shaking out assuming there are no trades, which is incredibly unlikely.

MIN Edwards
GS Wiseman
CHA Okongwu
CHI Avdija
CLE Hayes
ATL Haliburton
DET Williams
NYK Ball
WAS Toppin
PHO Okoro
SAS Bey
SAC Pokusevski
NOP Terry
BOS Vassell or maybe Jalen Smith. Who knows here?
I almost think Pokusevski was created in 2K to trick teams haha. That is hands down the scariest prospect in a long, long time. 2nd round gamble or multipick gamble? Yeah, but there are too many non whiff candidates and/or boom/bust candidates with a much better physical profile. I've seen the Bol Bol comparisons and skill wise they are there but you can tell the difference visually. Bol is insanely rangy. He covers the floor in a way that Pokusevski will never be able to. Their physical makeup is totally different.
 

Tetsujin

The Game Thread Dude
#39
I almost think Pokusevski was created in 2K to trick teams haha. That is hands down the scariest prospect in a long, long time. 2nd round gamble or multipick gamble? Yeah, but there are too many non whiff candidates and/or boom/bust candidates with a much better physical profile. I've seen the Bol Bol comparisons and skill wise they are there but you can tell the difference visually. Bol is insanely rangy. He covers the floor in a way that Pokusevski will never be able to. Their physical makeup is totally different.
At the same time though, from the little I’ve seen of Poku though youtube clips and the like, he’s a far better playmaker than Bol and has a better feel for the game than I think Bol had in college. He would also come with the benefit of not having Brandon Roy knees.
 
#40
@rick_bonnell

Two NBA sources: Onyeka Okongwu has a foot injury that could cost him training camp and maybe some of the regular season. Could impact where he's chosen in tonight's NBA draft (but not a lot).

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With Warriors gettimg their big Wendell Carter and with Okongwu's injury is Okongwu the player that drops this year?
 
#41
Complete guess

1 Minny - Edwards
2 Bulls - Wiseman (trade w/Warriors)
3 Boston -Ball (trade w/Charolette)
4 GS - Avdija
5. Knicks - Toppin (trade w/Cavs)
6. Atl - Haliburton
7. Pistons- Williams
8. Cleveland- Okoro
9. Wizards- Vassell
10. Suns- Hayes
11. Spurs - Okongwu
12. KINGS- Lewis
13. Pels- Bey
14. Charolette- Precious

If Suns go Lewis, I can see Bey.
Spurs would take gamble on a big, but if Okomgwu is there do we pull the trigger?
 
#42
@rick_bonnell

Two NBA sources: Onyeka Okongwu has a foot injury that could cost him training camp and maybe some of the regular season. Could impact where he's chosen in tonight's NBA draft (but not a lot).

------
With Warriors gettimg their big Wendell Carter and with Okongwu's injury is Okongwu the player that drops this year?
W’s/CHI is a done deal?
 
#48
Thanks for spotting that.
I’ve noticed it’s not always easy to tell which one you’re viewing, at least on the mobile site. O’Connor is very high on Hayes and Terry, will be interesting to see how that plays out. I remember he was higher on Carter Jr than most, too, a couple years back.
 

bajaden

Hall of Famer
#49
You think we take Lewis over Vassell? That might be the point I become a GS fan.
Remember, I didn't say that this is how I would pick them, but how I thought the draft would go based on reading the local newspapers of the teams and the national rumors. All of which is speculation, but there's usually an element of truth hiding out there somewhere.
 

bajaden

Hall of Famer
#52
We'll see. So far there's little to go off with McNair. All we have is the Bogi deal which is beginning to sound like a situation where they dealt him to the Bucks to avoid either losing him for nothing or overpaying to match an offer sheet from another team. I have no idea what his draft strategy is.

But the apparent lack of workouts is weird. I don't know if it means anything or not.
Well I think you nailed it when you said we have little to go on with McNair. This draft should a little light on it, maybe, but certainly free agency will. I have my own opinion, based purely on nothing but my gut, and the few statements that McNair has made. Up to now, the Kings have been operating like a team that's one piece away from the playoffs. Thus in free agency we've been pursuing older veteran players with experience to get us over the hump. Had we signed Bogi, who I love as a player, it would have been a signal that the team still thought it had a chance to grab that 8th spot next season.

Lets say we actually did grab the 8th spot. How far would we go, and if we went out in the 1st round, which is likely, how would the future of the team look. Example: The Celtics have built a team that came mostly through the draft, and then started filling in with players that could contribute. But when they broke out and made the playoff's, and got sent home, you felt confident that they would be back next season, and for many seasons to come. Why? Because they had a young core that was extremely talented.

Because of that talented young core, they've become a free agent target. When they've added an older player with trade assets, it's been players like Kemba Walker or Gordon Haywood. That hasn't always worked out, and they've stumbled at times, but they still have that core, which gives them a large window to operate in. That's the approach the Kings need to take. I think that's the direction McNair wants to go. Which probably means that Barnes and Buddy's days are numbered.

I don't think that anyone with half a brain could look at the current roster of the Kings and think wow, this is a playoff team. And if not, then you bite the bullet, start making deals for younger players, and riding yourself of older players on big salaries. The worse case scenario for any team is to be capped out and still be on the outside looking in. This is nothing but speculation on my part, and maybe my own biases seeping in. But whatever direction McNair wants to go, I hope he's committed to it, and won't waver when the bullets start flying.

Despite this being a weak draft, it's setting up to be one of the most exciting. Were once again at a crossroads, waiting to see which road we take. It's time for optimism, faith, and belief. There's plenty of time for depression later. That's a direction we all know to well..
 
#53
I have Lamelo Ball as the best prospect of this class. As always I look at it from the perspective of what is valuable in todays Nba, how hard it is to acquire certain type of players via trades or free agency and how probable the path is for the player to become a major contributer in a championship contender. Also the higher the pick, the more emphasis is on the highest end upside.

One thing that is extremely valuable is if one of your top 2 ball handlers have an elite skill of creating efficent offense for others (and themselves.) Being an elite pick n roll ball handler is one of the most valuable things in this league since players like that alone can transform your team to a clearly above average offense. Thats why I had Tre Young above Ayton in my big board couple years ago.

Lamelos vision and passing ability would already be at the very top of the whole league. Thats a skill that really isnt teachable. You can develope from bad to solid or from solid to good but if you havent demonstrated elite vision and/or passing ability in college/lower levels, you most likely wont ever be that in the Nba.

One thing that will be pivotal for Lamelo is his shooting. IF he can become a respectable shooter, to the point that defenders cant play passively and go under ballscreens, he will be a stud offensive player. If you are that good of a passer and have such an elite vision AND you can force defenders to either go over the screen or hard hedge, you will almost automatically be a very effective pick n roll ball handler.

The question is how probable it is that he becomes a good (enough) shooter. His free throw percentage gives you hope, his ability and willingess to take very tough and deep threes gives you some hope. His history and reputation of being a good shooter gives you hope. His touch with his unconventional floters give you hope. To me its a question of his work ethic and willingness to be more consistent with his form and base. If he has that I'm confident he will become good enough shooter. Of cource as a casual fan I have no idea about anyones work ethic ect so its hard to predict stuff like that.

There are two other questions about Lamelo still: his defense and his finishing. What gives me hope about his defense is his length and his extremely high IQ that he sometimes demonstrated in Australia. Its easier to teach effort than IQ. He hasnt been asked to play defense ever before his stint to Australia and he was bad at it. Not in a stance, not giving full effort and lacking strength. Strength and effort is relatively easy to fix to a point but its all about work ethic again. He made some very high iq rotations last season so it indicates he could become an effective team defender if he just puts in the effort.

His finishing isnt great and one reason is lack of strength. He'll probably never be an overly efficent finisher but should improve as he gets stronger.

Why I have him above Edwards? Edwards tape doesnt show him making any advanced passes. He isnt a great defender, some effort problems and his tape doesnt suggest him having the talent to be a smart defender that is willing and able to rotate as needed. How valuable are high usage guys that dont generate great shots for others and wont be good defensively? They have value but to me its a lot harder to see the probable path for him to become a player that really contributes to winning at the highest levels.

To me Lamelo already has an elite Nba level skill that is extremely valuable. Edwards has the ability to become a player that creates semi efficent offense to himself. Also I remember reading an interview from Edwards where he basically said that he would rather play football than basketball and doesnt really like to even watch Nba. Not a great sign when evaluating wether he will give better effort in the league instead of becoming something like Wiggins.

This is also a bad draft. Not a real clear future high impact star but every time I pick first, I need to aim for a guy that could become at least a very valuable contributor to a contending team. Lamelo is that IF he developes in those certain areas. For Lamelo I expect him to struggle some in his first year like Tre Young did. Once he learns to contribute to defense for the whole game, works on his strength and gets his shot more consistent, he should be good in his second year and beyond that.
 
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bajaden

Hall of Famer
#55
At the same time though, from the little I’ve seen of Poku though youtube clips and the like, he’s a far better playmaker than Bol and has a better feel for the game than I think Bol had in college. He would also come with the benefit of not having Brandon Roy knees.
They are two entirely different players. If you want to comp Poku, I would go with Porzingis. Not that I think he's as good as Porzingis, but that his style of player is similar. Poku isn't a center. He actually plays more like a SF. Bol is a center and likely will never be more than that. And that's OK. If you were to ask me who is going to be the better player, my answer would be, I have no idea. But of the two, Poku is the unicorn, and I would put my money on him.
 
#56
With all the talk about what a bad draft this is, I see a half dozen guys projected in our range that I would not be mad about which is better than average! There's no superstar at the top to get hyped about but it looks like a solid mix of roster filler types who should find roles on NBA teams for awhile. And if you like big PGs and "high floor" 3 and D wings you could throw a rock and hit one this year. I expected Patrick Williams to move up because he's an explosive athlete who showed at FSU that you can plug him into a switching defense and get better. I didn't see him moving up all the way to the top 5 but stranger things have happened.

The question for us is likely going to come down to whether we want to gamble on upside (Pokusevski) or supplement our strength in the backcourt (Hayes, Lewis, Anthony, Maxey, Hampton) or try to get a capable defender on the wing (Bey, Vassell, Achiuwa). If Nesmith falls to 12 that presents another intriguing wrinkle. Houston built their team on spot-up shooters so perhaps we'll see McNair lean in that direction? I don't have a strong preference for any particular player this year. If I had to throw out a name though, Saddiq Bey seems like the best mix of production and potential with translatable skills on both ends of the floor and good size for a SF. If we're looking at need he's probably the best fit but we also need a backup PG and more playmaking in general and possibly even depth at SG if Hield is on the trade block. Picking at 12 we're at the mercy of the teams ahead of us and both San Antonio and Phoenix have been good judges of talent so I'd be surprised if they let any of Okoro, Okongwu, Williams or Haliburton slip past them.
 
#58
I would not at all be surprised if one of Okoro, Toppin, or Williams are there at 12. I know Williams stock has shot up, but who knows if that's a smokescreen. And while NYK are rumoured to want to trade up for Toppin, who knows if that's true either. I think Okoro has a real shot of falling to us, and there's a good chance Vassell will be there (I actually think Vassell is overrated by many here, though I would be fine with him at 12).

Of course, not all of them will fall, but I wouldn't at all be surprised if one of them does. I think Haliburton, Okongwu and Hayes will all certainly be gone, and Edward/Wiseman/Avdija/Ball have zero chance of being there.

There are always surprises. Poku could go much higher than expected if someone really believes in him. The likes of Nesmith, Lewis, Achiuwa, Bey, Terry and Maxey could also go higher than projected.
 
#59
Isn't it Okongwu that has the foot injury? I haven't heard anything about Okoro, but I may have missed it.

I doubt Okongwu falls to 12 in any case.
both do, Okongwu is a toe and Okoro just announced foot injury that could sideline him into the beginning of the season

edit: this is wrong on my part. It is just Okongwu with toe injury
 
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#60
both do, Okongwu is a toe and Okoro just announced foot injury that could sideline him into the beginning of the season
Thanks, I hadn't heard that.

I think Okoro had the biggest potential to drop to our spot out of all the top ten guys, and this makes it even more likely. I think there's a very real chance he's there at 12.