By Kabir C.
The NBA draft lottery this year was one of the most anticipated drafts in history. The New York Knicks had the worst record in the NBA and instead of rewarding them with the #1 pick, the draft lottery gave them the 3rd. This proved to teams that tanking isn’t always the answer. Prospect, Zion Williamson, was the most hyped player since LeBron James and is also who every NBA team wants. Zion was supposed to bring back Knicks basketball and produce excitement to the city. The New Orleans Pelicans, however, lucked out and received the first pick in the NBA draft. The Pelicans had a 6% chance of getting the first pick. Basketball is on the rise as the most popular sport in the United States and this draft is bringing the players that will help this cause.
#1 New Orleans Pelicans – 33-49: The New Orleans Pelicans lucked out in the NBA draft and with the First pick. They are expected to take Zion Williamson. Zion was the NCAA player of the year and has an unreal body build: 6’7, 285 pounds with a 45’ inch vertical jump. He is a gifted passer as well as an insane shot blocker.
#2 Memphis Grizzlies – 33-49: The Memphis Grizzlies need a new Point Guard and Ja Morant would be the best fit for them. Ja is an unreal talent who plays like top 15 players, Russell Westbrook. His explosiveness off the dribble and his ability to shoot at will make him a generational talent.
#3 New York Knicks – 17-65: The New York Knicks have cap space for two max contract players this offseason. Kyrie Irving wants out of his role in Boston and New York looks very promising to him. Kevin Durant is rumored to choose New York as well in order to build up his brand, similar to what LeBron James did with The Los Angeles Lakers. The Knicks could draft SF R.J Barrett, who was Zion Williamson’s teammate at Duke. R.J was an amazing shooter and can score points from almost anywhere.
#4 Los Angeles Lakers – 37-45: The Lakers were the most surprising team to receive a top 5 draft pick. The Lakers should pare LeBron James with SG Jarrett Culver. Culver is a shot creator who has above average athleticism and is a matchup nightmare for defenders.
#5 Cleveland Cavaliers – 19-63: The Cavs are in dire need of a new big man as Kevin Love is very old and the best player they could draft would be De’Andre Hunter. Hunter is a stretch 4 wing player who reminds me of the next Kawhi Leonard. Kawhi has a clutch performing gene and can also guard anyone on the court.
#6 Phoenix Suns – 19-63: The Suns are one of the youngest teams in the league which would mean most of their players are still developing. They have surrounded star Devin Booker with talents such as center Deandre Ayton who averages 16.3 points/game and 10.3 rebounds/game. Their position they need to fill in the point guard position which means they should take Darius Garland. Garland was injured for a large part of this year but is still one of the best shooters in this draft. If Darius didn’t get injured, he would be the best guard in the draft.
#7 Chicago Bulls – 22-60: The Bulls are also one of the most promising teams in the league, especially with players such as Zach LaVine and Lauri Markkanen. The Bulls are in need of a shooting guard so they should select Coby White. Coby is a playmaking SG who has excellent defense and has the potential to become a very consistent shooter.
#8 Atlanta Hawks – 29-53: The Hawks are another young team who are really good at putting on a show for the fans. Trae Young is supposedly the next Stephen Curry and the best player they could pair him up with is Cam Reddish. Reddish was a lights-out shooter for Duke and was ranked the #3 best player in High School. He fits the Atlanta Hawks system really well and he also pairs perfectly with Young.
#9 Washington Wizards – 32-50: The Wizards are one of the worst teams in the league which is why they have a lottery pick. Their position of need is the Power Forward position because they traded their multi-million dollar player Otto Porter jr to the Chicago Bulls. They could take foreign big man Sekou Doumbouya from Guinea. Sekou is a 6’9 power forward who can explode off the dribble at any moment. His 46.5 max vertical is amazing for his height and his transition basketball is unreal.
#10 Atlanta Hawks – 29-53: The Hawks lucked out and received another draft pick (because the Mavericks traded it to them) which means they have a chance to draft two future stars. With De’Andre Hunter off the board as the only true big man, The Hawks should select Center Jaxson Hayes from Texas. Hayes is the second most efficient player in college and has a terrific basketball IQ. He knows what to do in most situations and has the build of a modern-day big man.