The NBA Draft is here, and the basketball world’s youngest stars can finally join the league.
What We Know:
- The first three picks in the draft came with a little surprise. With the No. 1 overall pick, the Minnesota Timberwolves selected Anthony Edwards from the University of Georgia. The Golden State Warriors followed them up by taking James Wiseman with the second pick, and the Charlotte Hornets selected the polarizing Lamelo Ball at No. 3.
- Edwards is an athletic phenom with huge offensive upside. There are questions about his shot selection and his motor for the game, but he’s one of the few players in this draft that you can see becoming an NBA star. Wiseman fills a need for the Warriors as an athletic big who can contribute on day one. Ball certainly brings some drama and attention to Charlotte, who has desperately missed some star power. With the off-court stuff, Ball is also a tall point guard with incredible playmaking skills and a knack for hitting shots. There are questions about his offensive efficiency and defensive awareness, but at least people will now have a reason to watch the Hornets.
- Killian Hayes and Deni Avdija were also two intriguing international prospects selected in the top 10. Hayes was taken with the Detroit Pistons’ seventh pick, and he has a solid combination of ball-handling, shooting, and passing. His game is reminiscent of James Harden’s, and the Pistons could have a future elite point guard on their hands. Avdija was selected by the Washington Wizards at No. 9, and he brings a lot to them on the offensive end. His ability to see the floor and make plays in the open court should help Washington, and with John Wall and Bradley Beal on the team, he won’t be asked to do too much right away.
- There were three notable trades during the draft. The first came with the Minnesota Timberwolves, who traded the 17th pick in the draft – the rights to Aleksej Pokusevski – for Oklahoma City’s 25th pick, 28th pick Ricky Rubio. OKC acquired Rubio in the Chris Paul trade and is shipping the veteran point guard back to Minnesota, where he spent the first six seasons.
- There was a three-way deal between the Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit Pistons, and Brooklyn Nets. The Clippers are getting Luke Kennard from Detroit, the Pistons are getting the No. 19th pick from Brooklyn, and the Nets are getting Landry Shamet from LA. Shamet is a knockdown three-point shooter, and he should thrive in Brooklyn next to Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. The 19th pick became Saddiq Bey, who should contribute as a solid 3-and-D wing player for Detroit.
- The Dallas Mavericks are also trading Seth Curry to the Philadelphia 76ers for Josh Richardson and a second-round pick. Richardson to the Mavs could be interesting because he can be another on-ball creator who can shoot, and he provides solid defense. He’s also on an expiring contract, so Dallas’ hands won’t be tied for next year’s free agency. This trade is huge for the 76ers because they have desperately needed three-point shooting. Curry is one of the league’s best specialists, coming off a career-high 45.2% shooting from the three-point line. He is also head coach Doc Rivers‘ son-in-law.
In other news, it is being reported that Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson has unfortunately suffered a serious lower right leg injury. Thompson missed the entire 2019-2020 season recovering from a torn ACL in his left knee.