Every Friday we update our Mock drafts. Below is the updated mock draft as of January 4, 2019
- Cleveland Cavaliers
RJ Barrett (Duke) Freshman 6’7″ 205 Shooting Guard/Small Forward
The biggest thing going against RJ Barrett right now is that he has one of the most explosive athletes to ever play college basketball as a teammate. Despite Zion Williamson getting most of the love recently, we still believe Barrett will be selected at #1 Overall as the best long term option in the draft. The Cavs get their franchise player to build around.
2. Pheonix Suns
Zion Williamson (Duke) Freshman 6’7″ 285 Power Forward
The aforementioned explosive athlete, Williamson has taken the college basketball world by storm so far this season. He has proven his game is more than just dunks, but his outside shot remains a huge liability in his game. The suns would have to take him at #2 if Cleveland passes.
3. New York Knicks
Rui Hachimura (Gonzaga) Junior 6’8″ 225 Small Forward
Given that Hachimura has not been playing the game long, starting at the age of 15, his game should improve as he gets into his NBA career. The Knicks should be in a best player available situation here, that would be between Hachimura and Ja Morant at this time.
4. Chicago Bulls
Ja Morant (Murray State) Sophomore 6’3″ 170 Small Forward
While Morant is having a great season so far, he is benefiting from a weak point guard class this year. There are questions on his outside shot and strength concerns, but he has played better than any other point guard thus far.
5. Atlanta Hawks
Keldon Johnson (Kentucky) Freshman 6’6″ 211 Shooting Guard
The idea in Atlanta should be to surround Trae Young with shooters, this would be a solid pick to have Johnson join Young and Kevin Huerter to form a young nucleus of effective scorers. Johnson has shown to be the best player on a Kentucky team that will no doubt be a factor in March.
6. Washington Wizards
Cameron Reddish (Duke) Freshman 6’7″ 218 Small Forward
Reddish has been in a bit of a slump over the holidays, but his upside is one of the highest in the draft and barring injury is a lock to in the top 10. Washington could use another young wing, and Reddish could be a steal at #6.
7. New Orleans Pelicans
Bol Bol (Oregon) Freshman 7’2″ 235 Center
Bol announced earlier in the week he would not play again this season due to an ankle injury. Durability will always be a question with Bol, skill will not be, and he could easily go higher. Bol Bol and Anthony Davis on the floor together could be a scary thing.
8. Orlando Magic
Kevin Porter Jr. (USC) Freshman 6’6″ 218 Shoting Guard
The USC freshman as not played since December 1, but he is expected back this season. When he has played this year, he has shown the ability to score and get to the rim. An elite athlete and natural scorer, his upside is worth the pick at #8.
9. Brooklyn Nets
Nickeil Alexander-Walker (Virginia Tech) Sophomore 6’5″ 210 Shooting Guard
Alexander-Walker has been one of the most efficient players in college basketball this season. The combo guards game has few holes, and he could play his way up higher if he keeps the solid play going. Great value pick at #9 for Brooklyn.
10. Minnesota Timberwolves
Jarrett Culver (Texas Tech) Sophomore 6’5″ 190 Shooting Guard
The sophomore did not exactly come out of nowhere this season, but he was not expected to take the jump that he has. He is an efficient scorer, with basketball I.Q. and more than adequate athleticism. You can never have too many perimeter shooters in today’s NBA.