21. Utah Jazz (via Golden State)
Player Name: Lucas Nogueira
Position, School: C, Brazil
The Jazz got lucky and got their point guard with their first pick and now must target a big guy with Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap both free agents. Nogueira is long, athletic and especially agile for someone his size. The 20-year-old Brazilian has the upside to make Utah’s frontcourt very formidable down the road and is just too intriguing to pass on here.
22. Brooklyn Nets
Player Name: Gorgui Dieng
Position, School: C, Louisville
Dieng is not only an impressive rebounder, defender and shot-blocker, but he improved offensively throughout the season. The Nets could really use a backup 5 and would benefit from Dieng’s shot-blocking abilities. He will look nice playing behind Brook Lopez.
23. Indiana Pacers
Player Name: Isaiah Canaan
Position, School: PG, Murray State
The Pacers take a risk on Canaan here and it will pay off in a big ay as their point guard of the future. He’s a 6’1” with a great handle and playmaking skills. Canaan is also extremely quick and has a strong frame that can absorb contact around the rim. In addition Canaan is a natural floor general and one of the best shooters in all of college basketball. He has impressed teams in a big way during workouts and should find himself in the first round.
24. New York Knicks
Player Name: Tony Mitchell
Position, School: PF, North Texas
It’s hard for me to pass on Allen Crabbe or Nate Wolters here, but the enormous upside of Mitchell just interests me too much. The Knicks are prioritizing bringing back J.R. Smith, which makes athletic frontcourt help an even more glaring need. Mitchell might be the best athlete in this draft and comes at a discount after a mediocre sophomore season. He’s an excellent rebounder and shot-blocker and arguably the top pound-for-pound athlete in this draft, given his size, 7’3” wingspan and ability to play above the rim. Even if his skill set never comes around, Mitchell might be worth it this late based on the athleticism he can inject up front. However if he ever realizes his potential, the Knicks will have a future star on their hands.
25. Los Angeles Clippers
Player Name: Tim Hardaway JR.
Position, School: SG, Michigan
The Clippers can target a shooting guard who can score the ball, which would add even more depth to an already deep team as well as some youth for the future. Hardaway Jr. has the perfect build for an NBA 2-guard- a 6’5” frame, long arms and fluid athleticism, not to mention he can score points in bunches.
26. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Memphis Grizzlies)
Player Name: Mason Plumlee
Position, School: PF, Duke
The Wolves would likely be targeting a big man here after getting a shooter early. Plumlee falling to them could turn out to be a gift. Plumlee is a great value at No. 26 as a developed player that can contribute right away. He may have been a bit of a role player of sorts on a talented Duke team, but Plumlee should slide right into Minnesota’s rotation.
27. Denver Nuggets
Player Name: Allen Crabbe
Position, School: SG, California
With the Nuggets in danger of potentially losing Andre Iguodala, it make sense to add a guy like Crabbe here. He’s not a great defender by any stretch of the imagination, but Crabbe can really shoot it and should fit well in the Nuggets offensive attack, whether he plays the 2 or the 3.
28. San Antonio Spurs
Player Name: Rudy Gobert
Position, School: PF, France
The Spurs go international again and maybe find a future replacement for Tim Duncan, Gobert has fallen a bit after first being thought of as a lottery pick, but he is a guy with a lot of upside. The Spurs are desperate for size and love international players. Gobert has a 7’9″ wingspan and high-level athleticism make for an excellent shot-blocking prospect. He is only 20 and lacks polish and strength, but the Spurs can afford to wait out his development.
29. Oklahoma City Thunder
Player Name: Ricky Ledo
Position, School: SG, Providence
Ledo’s upside makes him a good option for the Thunder here. He has plenty of off-the-court problems, but Ledo is very intelligent on the floor, making him a challenging, but worthwhile project for Scott Brooks. Having not logged a single minute at Providence after being ruled ineligible, Ledo is now considered one of the higher-risk, higher-reward options in the draft. Out of high school, Ledo was regarded as a premier scorer who could handle the ball, shoot it and create off the dribble. Many feel he has Top 10 talent and the Thunder could get a steal here.
30. Phoenix Suns (via Miami)
Player Name: Kelly Olynyk
Position, School: C, Gonzaga
The Suns could look for another shooter but since Olynyk has slid, why not add size as well. His offensive game is for real and he is a big who can stretch the floor with his jumper. Olynyk’s versatile offensive game makes him a good value pick at No. 30.
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