College basketball is already underway and that just means one thing: it’s time for us to start scouting top-tier prospects to see who can make it to the NBA and what is our favorite team going to get.
Even though it’s still pretty early in both the NBA and the NCAA season, we can already go ahead and take a look at some of the best young ballers in the world to try and put together our mock draft.
So, let’s skip the talking and go straight to the point. Let’s mock draft the top 14 prospects of the year.
14. Ja Morant - Houston Rockets
If the Houston Rockets don’t turn it around pretty soon (which they’re likely to do), they could miss the playoffs and wind up getting Ja Morant, a sophomore point guard out of Murray State that is considered to be one of this class’ biggest sleepers.
Morant went unranked a couple of years ago but has made great strides to find himself as a lottery pick for next year’s Draft, thanks to his athleticism, verticality and explosiveness in the offensive end.
13. Rui Hachimura - Utah Jazz
Rui Hachimura is a Japanese walking bucket. He has a 7’2’’ wingspan and could play both forward spots with ease. He’s already one of the most dominant scorers of his age and can even create off the dribble.
The Utah Jazz aren’t likely to get him as they’re going to be a playoff team for sure, but the team that winds up getting him needs to be quite patient with the Asian. He’s got Antetokounmpo-like potential but is likely going to need a lot of time to adapt to the NBA.
12. Nazreon Reid - Los Angeles Lakers
The Los Angeles Lakers have been one of the worst teams when it comes to getting stops this season, and that’s not likely to change any time soon even despite Tyson Chandler’s arrival to the Staples Center.
The Lakers desperately need some depth at the center position and Nazreon Reid could contribute right away. He’s a mobile and strong big man that can become a dominant rebounder in this league, and his footwork is one of the best of his class.
11. Jaylen Hoard - New Orleans Pelicans
The New Orleans Pelicans desperately crave some scoring off the bench and Jaylen Hoard is likely going to be quite helpful in that regard, as he’s a great finisher with both hands and a solid scorer.
Hoard thrives off his athleticism and is great in transition, something that will definitely fit very well next to players like Julius Randle and Anthony Davis and the fast-paced offense Alvin Gentry loves so much.
10. Daniel Gafford - Brooklyn Nets
Daniel Gafford made the right choice by deciding to stay in college instead of declaring for last year’s draft, and that has truly helped his draft stock drastically rise over the last couple of months.
The big man is showing vast signs of improvement as he has more body control now and doesn’t force so many things in the offense, and he could fit very well next to Jarrett Allen for the Brooklyn Nets.
9. Kris Wilkes - Orlando Magic
Kris Wilkes enters his sophomore season with the UNC Tar Heels after withdrawing himself from last year’s NBA Draft following the combine and has seen his stock drastically rise over the last couple of months.
Wilkes has a great feel for scoring from all three levels, even though he needs to find more consistency with his shot. Even so, the Magic are likely going to find a way to mess up with him like they always do.
8. Bol Bol - Minnesota Timberwolves
Bol Bol, Manute Bol’s son, has the potential to become the best center in this Draft. He’s impressed with his length, athleticism and strength, and has a great feel and timing to become a top-tier rim protector.
Also, Bol has shown a lot of range and doesn’t hesitate to create his own shot. He’s going to find it tough to get many minutes with Taj Gibson and Karl-Anthony Towns in the team, especially because Thibodeau doesn’t like playing rookies, but the upside is definitely there.
7. Charles Bassey - Atlanta Hawks
Charles Bassey is quite a physical big man that would be perfect to lock down the Atlanta Hawks terrible defense down low, playing next to John Collins as the good old-fashioned twin towers.
Bassey is a great roll man that’s constantly looking to set picks, has a great feel for putbacks and is a great finisher with both hands, although his face up game and shooting aren’t quite there yet.
6. Romeo Langford - Chicago Bulls
The Chicago Bulls already have a nice core in Dunn, LaVine, Markkanen and Carter, so Romeo Langford could step up as a guy that isn’t going to be a star but has the potential to contribute in every aspect of the game on a nightly basis.
Langford is a versatile guard/forward that thrives while playing off-ball, is a great isolation scorer and an underrated ball handler. His rebounding could improve a little bit, but the Bulls’ solid frontcourt would help him ease the transition to the league.
5. Nassir Little - New York Knicks
The New York Knicks have struggled to get stops for years, and now that Tim Hardaway Jr has come together as a scorer and Kevin Knox looks like a stud in the making, Little could fill the other forward spot in the Big Apple.
Nassir Little isn’t the best scorer of his class and there’s a lot of room for improvement in that regard, but he’s got a huge wingspan and feel for defense and could provide a lot of physicality for a Knicks team that can’t stop anybody.
4. Cameron Reddish - Washington Wizards
The Washington Wizards need to start over and just trade everybody and tank. Otto Porter Jr has been awful to start the year and it looks like Kelly Oubre Jr won’t be much better either, so that’s where Cameron Reddish comes in handy.
Reddish is the third top-5 prospect out of Duke University this season. He’s an explosive and streaky scorer that can get hot in the blink of an eye, and could even grow to play the power forward spot if needed.
3. Sekou Doumbouya - Dallas Mavericks
The Dallas Mavericks could put the icing on top of the cake in next year’s Draft by taking Sekou Doumbouya, one of the most physical specimens in this Draft, and a guy that has been a walking bucket in France’s second tier league all season long.
Doumboya is a natural scorer that can play both forward spots and would be a deadly weapon next to Dennis Smith Jr and Luka Doncic. Even though he’s still raw, the sky seems to be the limit for the young foreign baller.
2. RJ Barrett - Phoenix Suns
RJ Barrett is arguably the best scorer in this class and even though the Phoenix Suns are already stacked at the wings, he’s a no-brainer with the 2nd overall pick. Perhaps Phoenix could use him to trade down and find a starting point guard.
Either way, with him, Booker and Ayton; the Suns would feature one of the deadliest scoring trios in the league for many years to come, as Barrett can score in bunches and even facilitate as a versatile guard/forward.
1. Zion Williamson - Cleveland Cavaliers
The Cleveland Cavaliers are going to get a total freak of nature in Zion Williamson, a guy that has the kind of physique to dominate most NBA big men in the post, an explosive athlete that defies nature with his high hops.
Williamson is strong, a solid defender, an explosive scorer and an underrated playmaker. He’s the most hyped player since LeBron James, so who would be better than him to kick-start the post-LeBron era in the Q?