On June 21 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the best young talents in basketball are set to gather, all ready to be picked by NBA teams looking for fresh players to boost their competitiveness in the eat-or-be-eaten world of the big league. Let’s take a look now at how our writers predict the 2018 NBA Draft will go down.
TopBet Writers’ 2018 NBA Mock Draft Picks and Predictions
Where: Barclays Center – Brooklyn, N.Y.
When: Thursday, June 21 7 PM EST
TV Broadcast: ESPN
Live Stream: ESPN.com or via ESPN mobile app
|1 – Phoenix Suns||Deandre Ayton||Luke Doncic||Deandre Ayton|
|2 – Sacramento Kings||Luka Doncic||Deandre Ayton||Marvin Bagley III|
|3 – Atlanta Hawks||Marvin Bagley III||Marvin Bagley III||Luka Doncic|
|4- Memphis Grizzlies||Michael Porter Jr.||Jaren Jackson Jr.||Michael Porter Jr.|
|5- Dallas Mavericks||Mo Bamba||Michael Porter Jr.||Mo Bamba|
|6 – Orlando Magic||Trae Young||Mo Bamba||Jaren Jackson Jr.|
|7- Chicago Bulls||Jaren Jackson Jr.||Trae Young||Wendell Carter Jr.|
|8- Cleveland Cavaliers||Wendell Carter Jr.||Wendell Carter Jr.||Trae Young|
|9- New York Knicks||Mikal Bridges||Collin Sexton||Collin Sexton|
|10- Philadelphia 76ers||Kevin Knox||Mikal Bridges||Mikal Bridges|
Some Important Questions About the 2018 NBA Draft:
Michael Porter Jr. to the Mavs?
The Mavs was lucky to snag Dennis Smith Jr. last season. The Knicks could’ve selected Smith but opted to use their No. 8 pick on Frank Ntilikina over Smith, who fell to Dallas at No. 9. Ntilikina isn’t bad, but Smith is leaps and bounds ahead right now in terms of progress of Ntilikina. The Mavericks are looking to do well in the draft again and by taking Porter would mean that the Mavs will have a 6-10 combo forward who has great mix of athleticism, size, and range. Also, that would mean Dallas is going to look for a big man in free agency, possibly going after DeMarcus Cousins.
Kevin Knox Breaks Into the Top 10?
Kevin Knox used to be not part of most experts’ top players in their mock drafts, but the Kentucky product has been turning plenty of heads of late. His workouts with different teams have been getting great reviews and some scouts are raving of his potential to become the next Kevin Durant or Giannis Antetokounmpo because of his agility, length, and shooting prowess. He is 6’9” with a 6’”11 wingspan. So, if Knox is going to be a top-10 pick, which team will get him? The Sixers are picking at No. 10 and adding Knox would add depth in the forward slot, though, he may find a bigger role in New York.
Could Cleveland’s Pick Convince LeBron James to Stay in Cleveland?
It was obvious in the recently-concluded 2018 NBA Finals that LeBron James needs help. He can’t beat the best of the west alone. He can carry four useless starters and beat a team like the Toronto Raptors, but he can’t do the same against teams like the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets. The Cavs have the No. 9 pick, which is outside of the top 5 (duh) but is still valuable, especially when considering the perceived depth of this year’s pool of incoming talents. The Cavs could get James help with that pick, though, it may not be enough for James to pick up his player option for 2018-19. At the very least, the Cavs can find someone who might just become the future face of the franchise in next Thursday’s draft.
What Kind of Help Will the Knicks’ Unicorn be Getting?
The Knicks have been causing their fans to pull their hairs until there’s none for years now. The team does not look like it’s going anywhere. There’s no clear direction three years after stumbling upon a gold in the form of Kristaps Porzingis in 2015. Porzingis is entering a contract year, and if the Knicks can’t surround him with better talent soon enough, he might just decide to go somewhere else one he becomes a free agent in the summer of 2019. The upcoming draft gives New York a chance of getting that complementary piece for the Unicorn big man.
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