The Latest

THE LATEST

THE LATEST THINKING

THE LATEST THINKING

The opinions of THE LATEST’s guest contributors are their own.

What To Watch For In the NBA Draft

Brian Taylor

Posted on June 21, 2017 21:19

2 users

One of the deepest Draft Classes in years combined with the arms race to take down the Warriors makes this NBA Draft the most intriguing in years.

For the lack of drama the NBA Playoffs gave us, this offseason has been what the kids call "lit".  A couple blockbuster trades have already gone down, with several big fish still being dangled.  Thursday's Draft was one of the deepest in years, creating opportunity for the teams actively chasing the Warriors to acquire an established star while teams looking to rebuild could acquire a piece to accelerate the process.  While I don't see anybody being a "once in a generation talent" (Sorry not sorry Lavar Ball), there is a wealth of talent available that can shape several franchise's futures for years to come. Here are the 5 storylines I'm looking at on Thursday:

The First Pick Goes to..... - For the sixth time in NBA History the #1 Pick changed hands pre-draft, with Boston swapping places with the 76ers at #3.  Don't expect to see any surprises here, Markelle Fultz has been the consensus #1 pick since he declared after a single season at Washington.   

Lonzo and the Lakers - It seems like a match made in heaven: the kid from nearby Chino Hills, who became a UCLA legend in just one season, becomes the hero who revives the storied Lakers franchise.  But between reports of lackluster workouts and the annoyance that is Lonzo's Father, Lavar Ball, it seemed possible that the Lakers might move in another direction until this week's trade of DiAngelo Russell.  I fully expect the Lakers to take Ball while hoping they don't, simply to watch a Lavar Ball meltdown.

#3-5 - Many see the next tier players available at 3-5 being a big drop from the two Pac-12 point guards, I am not one of those people.  With reports that he wanted Jayson Tatum of Duke, even at #1, Boston GM Danny Ainge knew what he was doing in trading two spots down while acquiring a future pick that should also end up in the lottery.  To get the guy you want along with another pick is a shrewd move that gives the Celtics even more flexibility to challenge the Cavs in the East. #4 falls to Phoenix, who is set in the backcourt, so expect to see wingman Josh Jackson of Kansas go to the Suns.  At #5 Sacramento is reportedly SUPER high on De'Aron Fox of Kentucky and by pick or by trade, I expect him to be a King

Blockbuster Trades - The most exciting part of Draft Night is the announcement of a trade.  With multiple stars on the block and teams in "Win Now" mode looking for the piece to take them to the next level, look for at least one of Paul George, Jimmy Butler or Kristaps Porzingis to change addresses.

Portland's Next Move - One team to watch closely are the Portland Trail Blazers.  With 3 first rounders and several bad contracts on the books, expect the Blazers to be very active in using their picks to get out of some of last offseason's bad decisions.

 

Brian Taylor

Posted on June 21, 2017 21:19

Comments

comments powered by Disqus
12

Dallas Mavericks big man and future Hall of Famer Dirk Nowitzki knows his way around the perimeter despite being 7-feet...

THE LATEST THINKING

Video Site Tour

The Latest
The Latest

Subscribe to THE LATEST Newsletter.

The Latest
The Latest

Share this TLT through...

The Latest