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Every NBA draft class has volatility—even one in 2020’s mostly suspended sports world.
With more than enough time to break down film from every angle, evaluators continue moving prospects up and down their draft boards.
We’ll spotlight three of the biggest movers after laying out our mock first round below.
2020 NBA Mock Draft
1. Golden State Warriors: Anthony Edwards, SG, Georgia
2. Cleveland Cavaliers: LaMelo Ball, PG/SG, Illawarra Hawks
3. Minnesota Timberwolves: Isaac Okoro, SF/PF, Auburn
4. Atlanta Hawks: Obi Toppin, PF/C, Dayton
5. Detroit Pistons: James Wiseman, C, Memphis
6. New York Knicks: Killian Hayes, PG, Ratiopharm Ulm
7. Chicago Bulls: Onyeka Okongwu, PF/C, USC
8. Charlotte Hornets: Deni Avdija, SF/PF, Maccabi Tel Aviv
9. Washington Wizards: Devin Vassell, SF, Florida State
10. Phoenix Suns: Tyrese Haliburton, PG, Iowa State
11. San Antonio Spurs: Cole Anthony, PG, North Carolina
12. Sacramento Kings: RJ Hampton, SG, New Zealand Breakers
13. New Orleans Pelicans: Aaron Nesmith, SF, Vanderbilt
14. Portland Trail Blazers: Patrick Williams, PF, Florida State
15. Orlando Magic: Kira Lewis Jr., PG, Alabama
16. Minnesota Timberwolves (via Brooklyn Nets): Tyrese Maxey, SG, Kentucky
17. Boston Celtics (via Memphis Grizzlies): Theo Maledon, PG, ASVEL
18. Dallas Mavericks: Saddiq Bey, SF/PF, Villanova
19. Milwaukee Bucks (via Indiana Pacers): Leandro Bolmaro, SG/SF, Barcelona
20. Brooklyn Nets (via Philadelphia 76ers): Jaden McDaniels, SF/PF, Washington
21. Denver Nuggets (via Houston Rockets): Robert Woodard, SF, Mississippi State
22. Philadelphia 76ers (via Oklahoma City Thunder): Tyrell Terry, PG, Stanford
23. Miami Heat: Nico Mannion, PG, Arizona
24. Utah Jazz: Precious Achiuwa, PF/C, Memphis
25. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Denver Nuggets): Jahmi’us Ramsey, SG, Texas Tech
26. Boston Celtics: Aleksej Pokusevski, PF, Olympiacos II
27. New York Knicks (via Los Angeles Clippers): Tyler Bey, SF/PF, Colorado
28. Toronto Raptors: Isaiah Stewart, C, Washington
29. Los Angeles Lakers: Josh Green, SG/SF, Arizona
30. Boston Celtics (via Milwaukee Bucks): Jalen Smith, PF/C, Maryland
Prospects Shaking Up Stock Market
Stock Up: Killian Hayes, PG, Ratiopharm Ulm
If you’re not familiar with Hayes, the French floor general might be your favorite evaluator’s favorite prospect.
“While playing last season in Germany for Ratiopharm Ulm, Hayes showed skill beyond his years, taking stepbacks, side steps, and fearless pull-up jumpers,” O’Connor wrote. “Most NBA players, let alone teenagers, don’t possess the type of footwork required to attempt such complex moves, but Hayes is ahead of the curve.”
Some prospects might have more raw ability than Hayes, but his feel, handle, passing, off-the-dribble shooting and willingness to defend give him both a high floor and a shot at stardom. If team executives are as bullish about Hayes as these experts, he could have his draft night wrapped up early.
Stock Down: James Wiseman
Since this class lacks consensus opinions about most of its prospects, Wiseman’s stock isn’t down anywhere. If you look, you can probably still find mocks that have him going first overall.
But those mocks are coming fewer and farther between as analysts zero in on his limitations and question marks. As mouth-watering as his physical tools might be, they only go so far if he’s an exploitable defender in pick-and-rolls, a non-factor on the glass or a player who can’t create his own scoring chances.
“Wiseman is the toughest player to project because he came into college with tons of expectations, then played just three games because of the NCAA,” Fox Sports’ Jason McIntyre wrote while mocking Wiseman as the ninth pick. “We know what he can do, but can he defend the pick-and-roll? He’s limited offensively.”
It only takes one team to fall in love with Wiseman’s tools, of course, and several lottery teams could use a center. But given the way interior-only bigs are regarded in the modern game, he’ll need to convince clubs he can add to his arsenal in order to justify a top-three selection.
Stock Up: Kira Lewis Jr.
The normal age-related knocks a non-freshman takes go out the window with Lewis. After an early high school graduation, he reclassified to get a head start on his college career.
As Hollinger noted, Lewis is on the same age curve as the freshman class, but he buries almost all of them in production:
“Lewis was the youngest sophomore in the NCAA this season. He is so young that he’s actually the same age of most of this year’s freshmen, and is younger than several of them—by nearly a year in the case of North Carolina’s Cole Anthony, for instance.
“Thus, it’s instructive to compare Lewis against this year’s highly touted freshmen guards, because he’s the same age and had a better season than (checks notes)…all of them.”
Lewis keeps climbing toward the lottery, and his numbers argue he should already be there. The speedster supplied per-game contributions of 18.5 points, 5.2 assists and 4.8 rebounds. Over his final five outings, he put up 23.8 points on 50.6 percent shooting (48.1 from three) and 6.6 assists.