By Tanner Peterson
Everyone loves a good mock draft right? Especially one that we will probably look back at in a few months and laugh at! So here we go, with the first pick, in the 2019 NBA Draft the Phoenix Suns select…
This draft order is based on the NBA standings of December 5th.
1st Pick: Phoenix Suns: Zion Williamson (Duke, SF, Freshman)
Did you expect anything else? Zion Williamson is like nothing college basketball has ever seen. Ever. He is must watch TV not only for his electrifying jams, but he has shown the ability to score consistently. He is averaging 20.4 points per game, while also adding just over nine rebounds. Although he is struggling to shoot the ball from the outside (hitting on just 15% from deep) he is scoring from inside the arc effectively, making 73% of those looks. Adding Williamson to play the three or four with Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton should set the Suns to contend within the next few years, if not sooner.
2nd Pick: Chicago Bulls: RJ Barrett (Duke, SG, Freshman)
Again, did you expect anything different. Barring any sort of injury, I think Barrett and Williamson are absolute locks to go 1 and 2 in some form next summers NBA Draft. Barrett looks like a smooth scoring left handed guard that will be an elite playmaker for any team that takes him. Sound familiar? I’m not saying he’s going to be James Harden, but there are similarities for sure. As of now, the Canadian native is averaging 27 pts, seven reb, and four ast, while shooting nearly 40% from deep. The questions isn’t if Barrett will be a superstar in this league, but more if he’ll be taken with the first or second pick.
3rd Pick: Atlanta Hawks: Bol Bol (Oregon, C, Freshman)
This might come as a surprise to some. Many expect Duke freshman, Cam Reddish to land here, but I’m going to go a different direction. Last year the Hawks took a Trae Young out of Oklahoma University and now I think the right move is to pair him with a big man that could set up and elite pick and roll combo for the next decade. Bol Bol is not only 7’3, bu he shoots the rock as good as any big man in college basketball. That rare combo of size and shooting ability is tough to pass up. Many are concerned with how the young big man will handle physicality of the NBA, but I don’t have too many concerns with how the game is transitioning to a more fast paced and shooter heavy league.
4th Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers: Cam Reddish (Duke, SF, Freshman)
The Cavaliers are in need of an absolute superstar and Cam Reddish can be that player. I’m not sold on Collin Sexton being the answer to the organization. He shows flashes of being a Russell Westbrook type guard, but shows flashes of immaturity. Adding another scorer and high potential player in Reddish is a great selection. By no means in Reddish the second coming of Lebron, but he could provide the Cavalier faithful with hope that brighter days are ahead.
5th Pick: New York Knicks: Romeo Langford (Indiana, SG, Freshman)
The Knicks are in need at the playmaking position. Yes I know they have Frank Ntilikina and Kevin Knox, but I think that those two are more of high quality starters in the NBA, rather than stars. I think Romeo Langford could be that option. Langford has good size at 6’6 and has shown flashes in front of the Hoosier faithful that has them oohing and ahhing. His scoring ability is what makes him so special as he’s been consistently putting the biscuit in the basket no matter the opponent.
6th Pick: Brooklyn Nets: Nassir Little (North Carolina, SF, Freshman)
I’ll admit I haven’t watched a whole lot of Little and UNC this year, but from what I saw in the Jordan Brand Classic, the Tar Heel freshman can play ball with the best of ‘em. He’s coming off the bench as of now, but the upside is there for him. Little could be a name that makes a big impact come February and March and performances in the latter months could send his draft stock skyrocketing.
7th Pick: Miami Heat: Kevin Porter Jr. (USC, SG, Freshman)
Kevin Porter Jr. has been a slowly moving up the ranks and emerged as a star caliber player in the recent years. Coming in at 6’6, Porter has the size to be an immediate impact player for the Heat. I think that he would work well with James Johnson, Justise Winslow, and Josh Richardson with all four having a tenacious attitude on the court.
8th Pick: Washington Wizard: Ja Morant (Murray State, PG, Sophomore)
With it seeming like the beginning of the end in the John Wall and Washington Wizards era, Morant would work as a great successor to Wall in DC. If Morant continues at his current pace, he would be the first player in over 25 years to average 25 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists. Sure, I get it that he doesn’t play in the ACC or Big Ten, but the young man is a playmaker through and through.
9th Pick: San Antonio Spurs: De’Andre Hunter (Virginia, PF, Sophomore)
Hunter seems like a Popovich kind of guy. The sophomore power forward is an efficient scorer averaging 16 points and just over five rebounds, while shooting 64.5% from the field, including 47.6% from behind the arc. I see Hunter as a phenomenal role player that could find himself having a nice, long career in the Association.
10th Pick: Houston Rockets: Keldon Johnson (Kentucky, SG, Freshman
Not many people expected the Rockets to be a lottery team in December, but that is where we’re at. Sure they more than likely won’t be picking this early in the draft, but here we are. I see the Rockets as a team that has the luxury of not having to reach for their next superstar like most teams in the lottery. They can go the route of best player available, and I see that best player available as Keldon Johnson. Johnson is averaging nearly 16 points per outing and is constantly getting to the charity stripe. He jumper is lacking, but with so many shooters around him, it should provide plenty of room to maneuver and get to the rim.