News10's Sean Cunningham looks at players that are most likely to be picked during Round 1 of the 2014 NBA Draft on Thursday, June 26.
Most NBA ready and best overall talent in the draft. Some may have higher ceilings, but I think that's only because we have a great idea of the type of player Parker is, and there's others we're unsure about, like Joel Embiid, Dante Exum, etc. Cleveland needs a sure-fire star after missing with last year's top pick with Anthony Bennett.
Ultra athlete and threat on both ends of the floor. Might be best talent in the Draft. Most experts believe he's the sure-fire No. 1 pick. So much hype around him, and sometimes that can overshadow how good a player really is, leading to disappointment. Only concern is his focus in games. Think Milwaukee would love to pair him alongside "The Greek Freak" Giannis Antetokounmpo.
The image of Exum and reigning Rookie of the Year Michael Carter-Williams in a backcourt is attractive for Philly. They have two picks in the lottery and many more in coming years as they rebuild. Exum will be a project, but less risky than Embiid. Exum shows ability to be a combo-guard and has fantastic size at 6-6. Also feel Julius Randle is a real option here for the Sixers.
Embiid will drop, but I don't think too far. Orlando could look at the 7-footer from Kansas as trade bait, but even if they don't, much like Philly, they have two picks in the lottery. They can afford to take a risk on Embiid, who has red flags with his back and broken navicular bone in his right foot, which he just had surgery for. Orlando is known to have interest in Exum, Marcus Smart and Noah Vonleh.
Utah may really covet Jabari Parker, and may be willing to move up, but should the remain with the fifth pick, 18 year-old Noah Vonleh makes too much sense. Gifted big-man to stretch the floor with his smooth jumper. Physical specimen. Might look for more of a spark from more popular names like Julius Randle, or possibly Aaron Gordon.
Boston goes best player available and Marcus Smart is that guy to me. Boston may be zeroing in on Embiid, but I can't see him fall to Boston at No. 6. Smart provides a solution depending on what happens with Rajon Rondo. A point guard with the size he has, tremendous finish, but room to grow. Needs to improve shooting ability – but so do a lot of these prospects not named Nik Stauskas and Doug McDermott
I don't even really believe that Julius Randle will tumble this far, but is one of the few double-double type players in the Draft. Reported foot issue could scare GM's away, but he's said he won't require surgery. Defense needs work, but gifted scorer. He might have shown to be a little too passive at Kentucky in the NCAA Tournament.
Plenty of teams covet the San Jose native, but should he fall to Sacramento, and they decide to not move their No. 8 pick, I feel they'll choose him over the likes of Doug McDermott, Elfrid Payton and others. They would probably prefer Smart or Vonleh, but Gordon provides tremendous athleticism, fantastic defender – especially on the perimeter – where the Kings have struggled mightily.
The freshman from nearby Duke University, not named Jabari Parker, has seen his draft stock rise. A terrific playmaker and scorer would be a breath of fresh air. Hood has shown the ability to put a team on his back and be comfortable in that role. Also a tremendous perimeter player that Charlotte has had plenty of opportunities to look at.
One of the Draft's best shooters and the Big Ten Player of the Year. The Sixers really have a need for shooters and that's his specialty.
Has shown to be a terrific shooter, although he slid last year at Michigan State. Size is a concern but addresses a need in Denver. T'Wolves reported to be high on him as well.
This Draft's Damian Lillard, right? Pump the brakes. No doubt his draft stock has risen and is known as an elite defender. Kings are thought to be high on his radar and could draft him at 8th, or trade down to take him. Should he fall here at 13, Orlando will gobble him up, especially if Gary Harris and Nik Stauskas are gone.
T'Wolves' replacement for Kevin Love? Only real reason so many are projecting Payne to go here. But, another shooter could be an option here, especially if one like Harris, Stauskas slips. Maybe Doug McDermott.
Phoenix won't allow McDermott to fall past them. Elite scorer, great post game, really would be welcomed addition to Jeff Hornacek's squad. McDermott likely to go higher in my opinion, but can't see where over other options for teams.
Inconsistent at Kentucky as one of the many Freshman players they had on their deep championship roster. But, Young really has tremendous upside, and could be a player that Atlanta could get excited over, if they were a passionate NBA fan base.
TREMENDOUS athlete. One of the best verticals in the Draft. But, we've seen a ton of players with leaping ability who don't amount to much. LaVine, as a combo-guard, looks to change that. He shows a lot of potential but was limited as a Freshman at UCLA and is also a nice shooter. Might be a risk for teams higher.
Formerly of North Carolina, would be a lot higher if he hadn't been suspended. Hairston showed scoring ability and his great physical strength in the D-League. His stock may rise because of that.
Signed with Turkish team, any team that drafts him will need to wait at least a year, likely two. If he was NBA ready, he would be a sure-fire lottery pick. Phoenix will take the chance with him considering having another first-round pick.
Seems to be a perfect fit for Chicago. Warren is a pretty consistent and versatile scorer and rebounder at N.C. State. With Chicago's two first round picks, could see them take a more true point guard.
Feels like a no-brainer to see Toronto draft the hometown kid. Ennis grew to be a star in first year at Syracuse. Everyone calls him a true point guard because of high-level playmaking ability. Size and shooting ability are his biggest detractors. Could be serious option earlier with Chicago, but shouldn't fall past Toronto.
Versatile player who, even at 6-8 played mostly point guard at UCLA. In the NBA, he's likely more of a small forward who can distribute.
Projected to go all over the place but, should be a good option for Memphis who can try to develop the 19-year-old. Could be a better option for Houston.
Most effective in transition, but solid enough with room to develop despite being able to round out stat sheets.
Serbian point guard who is really intriguing teams in the draft. A player who will need time to develop and will go to a good team who can help facilitate the learning process. Heard scouts refer to him as possibly the best distributing point guard in the Draft.
Glenn Robinson III:
Obvious NBA pedigree; he waited another year at Michigan to grow, rather than enter in 2013. May have hurt him slightly, but upside is too high. Might be best suited as a shooting guard.
Attempt to keep LeBron James by getting a point guard that he likes. Napier has championship experience, but then again so does Mario Chalmers. Chicago known to covet him too and he was invited to the Draft in New York – that means I'm probably wrong with him going this low to Miami, unless they trade up.
Big and physical. Many teams could use a presence like McGary who has shown he's not some stiff on the floor. Might have gone higher if not for his back surgery. Only worked out for the Bucks, which is why many aren't as high on him.
McGary could be an option here for the Clippers too, but I like the size and athleticism of Capela, who would fit in Lob City
Possibly will stay in Europe another season, but Oklahoma City is talented enough to wait and let him develop.
Hardest team to project for, but power forward would seem to be a good move for San Antonio. I like Stokes and his upside. Impressed me with U.S. team and is a really big body. Inside presence and gobbles up rebounds.