NBA Mock Draft Top 5: Three-man race between Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren  and Jabari Smith to No. 1 - YouTube

On Junes 24th, 2022 at 8 pm the Orlando Magic are on the clock as they have the #1 pick in this year’s 2022 NBA Draft. Before we get into my 2022 First Round NBA Mock Draft here are a couple of notes about the mock draft.

  • These predictions are who I would pick at this spot if I was that teams scenario
  • I do not predict trades, that is way too difficult to do
  • For more analysis on players, you can listen to my podcast here

So without further ado, let’s get into my 2022 first-round NBA Mock Draft

  1. Orlando Magic- Jabari Smith 6’10 PF 250Lbs Fr Aubrun 

      • Reminds me of Kevin Garnett but more fluid offensively 
        • Not as good an athlete as Garnett
      • Excellent Jumpshot mechanics
        • Has the size and the athleticism to shoot over anyone
      • Settles for contested jumpers way too often
      • Magic needs a shot-maker in the forward position 
    1. OKC Thunder- Chet Holmgren 7’0 C 195Lbs Fr Gonzaga

      • Absurd length 
        • will have no trouble defending at the next level
      • Solid shooting stroke
        • Can play out of the pick roll/pop
      • Concerns about the frame
        • 195Lbs
          • Can he withstand playing in the NBA
    2. Houston Rockets- Paolo Banchero 6’10 250lbs Fr Duke

      • Versatility
        • Can play the 3/4/5 in the NBA on both sides of the ball
        • Perfect NBA Body
        • Has a go-to move
          • Spin move
        • High floor, but doesn’t have as big of a ceiling as Holmgren and Smith
    3. Sacramento Kings- Jaden Ivey 6’4 PG 200lbs Soph Purdue

      • Best athlete in the class
      • My favorite player in the class
      • Pick and roll nightmare 
        • Elite finisher at the rim
      • Can he play off the ball effectively
      • The jumper has improved, but he has ways to go
      • Kings likely to trade the pick
    4. Detriot Pistons-Keegan Murray 6’8 225lbs SF Soph Iowa

      • Can play the 2-4 in today’s NBA
        • I can defend all those positions as well
      • Good college scorer
        • Doubts about his game being as effective in the NBA
          • Due to not being the best athlete 
        • He projects as a 3-D player, especially if drafted by the Pistons 
    5. Indiana Pacers- Shaedon Sharpe 6’6 200lbs SG Fr Kentucky

      • He did not a play a single game in college
        • A fantastic athlete with such a fluid game 
        • Absurdly skilled 
          • But very raw as a talent 
        • Pacers have the time to take a developmental player like Sharpe
          • He would’ve been a top 3 projected pick in next year’s draft if he didn’t reclassify 
    6. Portland Trail Blazers- AJ Griffin 6’6 222lbs SF Fr Duke

      • Typical 3-D player
        • Elite catch and shoot shooter
          • (95th percentile in catch and shoot). 51.2% unguarded from 3.
        • Can defend multiple positions 
        • Concerns about his knees
          • Multiple ACL surgeries
        • I doubt the Blazers use this pick
    7. New Orleans Pelicans (Via Los Angeles Lakers)- Johnny Davis 6’5 194lbs SG Soph Wisconsin

      • He is a terrific rebounder for his size
        • 8.2 rebounds a game
      • Excellent mid-range game
      • Can heat up at any moment 
        • Think he could fit well off the bench or even next to CJ 
      • Think he will become a much better player if in a smaller role 
    8. San Antonio Spurs- Jalen Duren  6’10 250lbs C Fr Memphis

      • A physical force with an incredible wing span
        • 7’5
      • Great motor
      • Improving offensive player
        • Average free throw shooter and has little face-up game 
      • Lob threat 
    9. Washington Wizards- Bennedict Mathurin 6’6 210lbs CG Soph Arizona 

      • Multifacet shooter
        • 45.1% on catch & shoot opportunities. 43.8% guarded and 46.2% unguarded. 91st percentile as a jump shooter.
        • Explosive athlete 
        • Good NBA frame
        • Can he take the next step as a ball-handler and passer
    10. New York Knicks- Dyson Daniels 6’6 185lbs PG G League Ignite

      • Great size for a PG
        • Very fluid passer and decision-maker
      • Needs to work on his jump shot
        • NBA Teams are going to dare him to shoot 
      • Creative in changing pace in his offensive game 
    11. OKC Thunder (Via La Clippers)- Jeremy Sochan 6’10 230lbs PF Fr Baylor

      • Versatile defender
        • Can guard 1-5
        • Excellent motor 
        • Has an NBA frame
        • Very little offensive game 
        • Lu Dort replacement 
          • Because they have to pay him and I don’t think they will
    12. Charlotte Hornets- Mark Williams 6’10 242lbs C Soph Duke

      • Uses his athleticism exceptionally well in catching lobs and finishing around the basket
        • Great hands 
      • Massive wingspan
        • 7’6.5 9’9 standing reach
      • Doesn’t have a post-up/face-up game 
    13. Cleveland Cavilers- Malaki Branham 6’5 195lbs SG/SF FR Ohio State

      • Shot up draft boards over March Madness
      • Excellent at getting to his spot
        • Nothing fancy
      • Would replace Collin Sexton
      • Projects to be a solid defender
        • 6’10 Wing Span
      • I am very high on this prospect
    14. Charlotte Hornets(Via New Orleans Pelican)- Ochai Abaji 6’6 215lbs SF SR Kansas

      • Great shooting stroke
        • 41% from 3 last season
      • Winner
        • BIG 12POY/ Final Four MOP
      • Tends to be passive
      • Low ceiling 
    15. Atlanta Hawks- Tari Eason 6’8 216lbs SF Soph LSU

      • Physical specimen
        • Average 1.9 stl per game and 1.1 blocks
      • Needs to work on his playmaking
      • Skillset projects very well to the next level
      • Unconventional jumper
    16. Houston Rockets(Via Brooklyn Nets) Ousmane Dieng 6’10 205lbs PF NZ Breakers

      • Best talent at this point in the draft
        • He really improved in the second half of his season in the NBL
          • Dieng First Half: 4.8 PTS, 25.6% FG, 16.8% 3FG, 2.3 REB, 0.8 AST, 0.1 STL 
          • Dieng Second Half: 13.3 PTS, 49% FG, 29.4% 3FG, 4.1 REB, 1.1 AST, 1.1 STL
        • Needs time to develop
          • shot just 35.6 percent from the field and 23.5 percent from the 3-point range in the NBL.
        • A team like the rockets can afford to draft Dieng and stash him in the G-league for a couple of years
    17. Chicago Bulls- EJ Liddell 6’7 240lbs PF Jr Ohio State

      • Can score all 3 levels
      • Great NBA body
      • Not the best athlete but projects to be a 4 that can play the small ball 5
      • Can be a Grant Willams or P.J Tucker at the next level
    18. Minnesota Timberwolves- Nikola Jovic 6’10 220lbs Point Forward Serbia

      • Deep bag and creative in the ways he scores the basketball
      • An excellent passer, especially on outlets 
      • Cannot defend his life
        • Struggles to stay in front of his defender
    19. San Antonio Spurs(Via Toronto Raptors) Marjon Beauchamp 6’7 185lbs  SG G League Ignite

      • Offensive talent 
        • Competes on both ends of the floor
        • If his shot is not falling, he will find other ways to get involved
          • Needs to improve his percentages
            • Shot just 24% from 3 and 65% from the FT line.
    20. Denver Nuggets- Blake Wesly 6’5 185lbs SG Fr Notre Dame

      • Dynamic athlete 
        • Great first step
      • Smooth-looking jump shot
        • Yet was 30% from 3
      • Can play the PG or CG position 
    21. Memphis Grizzlies(Via Utah Jazz)- Bryce McGowens 6’6 180lbs SG Nebraska

      • Thin wiring guard
        • Elite scoring ability 
          • 3-level scorer
          • Tends to settle for bad shots
        • Thin frame
        • Needs to improve on defense 
    22. Philadelphia 76ers-Jalen Williams 6’6 190lbs SG Jr Santa Clara

      • Good catch and shoot 3-point shooter
        • He made 44.3 percent of his catch-and-shoot 3s. He also made 3’s in multiple ways.
        • 51/40/81 shooting splits.
      • Solid all-around player
      • Ready to contribute right away
        • If Sixers use this pick
          • Most likely, they trade it 
    23. Milwaukee Bucks-Walker Kessler 7ft 245lbs C Soph UNC

      • DPOY in CBB
        • Great size and shot-blocking ability 
      • Not much of an offensive game outside the paint 
    24. San Antonio Spurs- TyTy Washington 6’4 197lbs PG Fr Kentucky
      • Excellent in the pick and roll game
      • Great size for a PG
        • Good elevation on jumpers
      • Too many turnovers
        • Not a reliant floor general
    25. Houston Rockets- Jaden Hardy 6’4 190lbs CG G-League Ignite

      • Uber talented
        • #2 player in his recruiting class
      • He can be the number one scoring option if he reaches his full potential
      • Excellent free-throw shooter
        • 88.2%
      • Inefficient 
        • 27% from 3 and 35% from the field
      • Iso-heavy
    26. Miami Heat- Wendell Moore Jr 6’6 215lbs SF Jr Duke

      • Improved every year in college
      • Solid all-around player
        • 5.3rb and 4.4 apg 
      • Fit right in the Miami Heat system
    27. Golden State Warriors- Kendall Brown 6’8 205lbs PF FR Baylor

      • Elite defender
        • Can switch 2-4
        • NBA ready body
      • Very little offensive game
        • Reminds me of a stronger Matisse Thybulle
    28. Memphis Grizzlies- Patrick Baldwin Jr. 6’9 220lbs SF FR Milwaukee

      • A shooter who shot very poorly in college
        • 34% EFG
      • Not an elite athlete 
        • Tested very poorly at the combined
      • I believe in his shooting stroke
        • Would benefit to be a very good team early 
    29. Denver Nuggets(Via Phoenix Suns)-Dalen Terry 6’7 195lbs PG Soph Arizona

      • Versatility 
        • 6’7 PG
      • Average 5 rebounds and 4 assists per game
      • shot 50% from the field, 36% from 3, and 74% from the free-throw line
      • Great intangibles
      • Not much, not too like
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