2015 NBA Draft: First-Round Mock Draft 4.0
In the post-All Star break and trade deadline edition of our mock draft, we assess team’s needs based on trades made and look at teams who acquired potential first round picks and what they might use them on in the 2015 NBA Draft.
Short of the Philadelphia 76ers landing on this spot, it’s hard to imagine anyone but Jahlil Okafor
being the #1 pick this year. He’s the perfect fit for the New York Knicks and the triangle system under Derek Fisher
and Phil Jackson
The Minnesota Timberwolves are in a weird position where they don’t necessarily have a glaring weakness with so much young talent. I can’t see them taking either point guard here given that they have Ricky Rubio
and Kevin Martin
locked up long-term, but they also have Nikola Pekovic
signed to a long deal too.
The 76ers did what had been rumored for a long time in shipping away former rookie of the year Michael Carter-Williams
for draft picks. The result is a gaping hole on the point guard spot and two top point guards in this year’s draft.
PG, Ohio State
The Lakers pretty much need talent at any position. They could go a couple ways here, but D’Angelo Russell
makes a lot of sense for them with his shooting ability and his underrated passing skills.
In the last draft, I had them taking Kevon Looney
one spot later, but Kristaps Porzingis could be considered a higher prospect. Either way, the front court is where the Kings will be focusing, looking for someone to pair with DeMarcus Cousins
While I thought the Jazz might lose Enes Kanter
in free agency, he went ahead and demanded a trade. That leaves a hole in their front line that a long-term project like Myles Turner
can fill. The 18-year old could become a force down the line.
I’m much higher on Willie Cauley-Stein
than most, considering him a top-five prospect. With the Nuggets having traded away both Timofey Mozgov
and Javale McGee, they have a vacant spot at the center position.
This could be a bit of a risky pick with LeVert coming off a season-ending injury, but the Pacers have a chance to add a big-time talent next to Paul George
. If LeVert pans out, they’ve hit a home run.
The Pistons landed Reggie Jackson
as their possible point guard of the future, but they can land another big man to replace Greg Monroe
and better fit Stan Van Gundy’s system. Kevon Looney has drawn comparisons to Lamar Odom
, which would be great in SVG’s spread-the-floor system.
It’s hard to figure out where the Boston Celtics are going to go with this pick. They have a back court for the future with Isaiah Thomas
, Marcus Smart
, Avery Bradley
, and James Young
. I’d imagine that they’ll take the best player available that isn’t a guard, and that, right now, looks like Kelly Oubre
Via Brooklyn Nets
The fact that the Hawks are arguably the best team in the league, yet have a lottery pick is incredible and speaks volumes of Billy King’s ineptitude with the Brooklyn Nets. They’ll most likely take the best player available, which is the international shooting guard Mario Hezonja who Draft Express has as the #6 prospect in the draft.
Via New Orleans Pelicans
The Houston Rockets have much of the same benefits of the Atlanta Hawks as one of the best teams who can get better. Despite having signed Trevor Ariza this summer, Winslow is a player who doesn’t need the ball to play well and could fit well as a role player on this team.
The Suns went from a gluttony of guards to a lack of them. And with Gerald Green
and Marcus Thornton
both on expiring deals, the Suns might grab a pure shooting guard in Devon Booker to play alongside Eric Bledsoe
The Charlotte Hornets have a lot of young players they’re building around, which makes this draft choice hard to pinpoint. They have a ton of big men, but they could lose Al Jefferson
and, in that case, Frank Kaminsky
can be their replacement.
Via Miami Heat
The 76ers have their front court set for the future, but can use a small forward going forward. A draft where they land Mudiay and Sam Dekker would be a solid first round.
The Thunder did a great job solidifying their bench at the trade deadline, which probably means they won’t be in this position by the draft. If they are, their only weakness could be finding a back-up small forward, and Hollis-Jefferson is an elite defender to grab.
The Milwaukee Bucks don’t have many weaknesses after the trade deadline. They could land Montrezl Harrell
as a power forward, but it’s likely that Jabari Parker
will play the power forward role going forward. Jakob Poetl is having a breakout year and could cash it in for a first round pick.
Via Cleveland Cavaliers
The Bulls have an aging front court between Joakim Noah, Pau Gasol, and Taj Gibson. They could look to make it much younger and much more energetic with Harrell, although they could also look to add guard depth.
PG, Notre Dame
The Wizards are in the market for a back-up point guard after dealing Andre Miller
for Ramon Sessions
. Grant has had his stock shoot up and could play either guard position for the Wizards.
The Spurs appear to be on the downswing this year and could use some front court talent, but that’ll probably be proven to be a ludicrous statement when they make a Finals run and make me look like a fool.
via Chicago Bulls
The Cavaliers can use rim protection and while Robert Upshaw comes with all sorts of question marks, his on the court talent can not be denied and the Cavaliers could take a risk on him.
Between Dirk Nowitzki
, Tyson Chandler
, and newest addition Amare Stoudemire, the Mavericks have one of the best front courts of 2008. It’s time for them to get noticeably younger.
PF, Kansas State
Via Los Angeles Clippers
This is the same pick I mocked them before, it makes the most sense for the Celtics, who are going to be looking for best talent available, for the most part.
Via Houston Rockets
The Lakers, again, are desperate for talent. If they choose not to draft a point guard at the top of the draft, they could look at Jerian Grant or Tyus Jones down here. Instead, they’ll be looking at some front court help, with Justin Anderson being an elite defender.
While the Trailblazer do have Steve Blake
for next season (under the safe assumption he picks up his player option), they could use more bench help, and Jones has been very impressive for Duke this year.
SG, Georgia State
While his shooting has been down this year, R.J. Hunter
‘s M.O. is knocking down outside shots, which is the type of player the Grizzlies appear to always be in search of.
via Atlanta Hawks
The Brooklyn Nets are in a bad situation and need any and all talent. Jake Layman is a decent pick up late in the first round and could help solidify them going forward.
The Warriors could sell off the pick, which seems likely, especially considering they’ll have to re-sign Draymond Green
this summer. If they keep it, grabbing someone like Delon Wright
would be another ridiculous weapon in their arsenal.