Michael Neff’s 2021 NBA Draft Big Board
It seems like yesterday I was formulating a big board for the 2020 draft, but here we are again–another NBA Draft is finally here! My draft circadian rhythm is still shaken, but as the world propels itself into normal life, evaluators can get back to the schedule and pacing they are used to. We only had about eight months to dive deep into this years’ draft, and with an occasional case of burnout, that amounted to about six-and-a-half months for yours truly. However, it didn’t take nearly that much time for me to realize that this is an exciting draft from top to bottom. In an incredible rarity, I have given two prospects Tier 1 grades, in addition to two Tier 2 prospects. Last year, I perceived the 2020 Draft as having no Tier 1 guys and two Tier 2 prospects (Anthony Edwards and Lamelo Ball). As great as the top of the draft is, there is also extraordinary depth as you work your way down. You could convince me someone outside my top 20 like Kai Jones deserves to be in the top 10. I’ve seen intelligent arguments of exactly that nature. There are so many quality players and not enough slots to do their talents justice. I could see myself looking foolish by some of these rankings, but that is what makes the draft fun!
One more quick aside: I want to do a small part commemorating former Kentucky guard Terrence Clarke, who was tragically killed in a car accident back in April. I have dealt with similar tragedies in my own life and know how jarring news like this can be. Clarke will be my honorary 81st ranked player as a small gesture to celebrate the basketball legacy that he has left behind and would have continued to forge. So, without further ado, here are my 2021 NBA Draft Rankings.
1. Cade Cunningham, G, Oklahoma St
I know I do not speak for my UVA SBS colleagues when I say that Cade Cunningham is the best prospect in this draft, but these are my rankings and my rankings only! While I think Cunningham is the best prospect this year, I do not believe that Cade Cunningham is a generational talent. In the past decade, we have had AD, Luka, and Zion as generational prospects that truly earned that designation. If Cade were added to that list, that would mean forty percent of the last ten drafts contained a generational prospect. By definition, that is not feasible. However, Cade Cunningham is exactly what you want in a star prospect.
I think a great way to summarize the way I devise my rankings is the sum of a prospect’s low-end outcome and their high-end outcome. Cade Cunningham probably has the highest floor in the draft class and one of the highest ceilings. Coming into the college season, the main concern for Cade was shooting. In just a year, he has turned shooting into a strength, registering an even 40 percent from three and 84.6 from the line. Those are excellent shooting indicators coupled with a compact shooting stroke. On top of that, Cade is a great defender. He will be a positive defender at the next level guarding 2-4 playing passing lanes. He showed great help-side understanding and put up respectable steal and block rates of 2.5 and 2.3 percent. He slides his feet and has the requisite size and strength to defend multiple positions. Given these skills, Cade already has a floor as an impactful 3 & D player.
In terms of projecting a ceiling, Cade’s passing will ultimately determine how good he becomes. Critics will point to Cade’s below 1:1 AST:TO ratio, but Cade is a far more advanced passer than this stat suggests. He has shown the ability to make every pass in the book with either hand–dump-offs, weak-side skips, lobs, manipulation layup passes–you name it.
I believe wholeheartedly in Cade’s current passing ability, but some don’t. Let’s pretend the critics are right for a second. Even if Cade is just a good but not great passer right now, he showed the scoring ability in college that suggests he can build off of that. According to Synergy, Cade was in the 90th percentile in isolation scoring and has 124 unassisted makes from the field, per HoopMath.com. This type of scoring often results in passing improvement. So, we’re dealing with a discussion of when, not if, his passing ability will be in the upper echelon of the NBA.
The more pertinent questions with Cade are his handle and burst. One of these needs to improve if he is going to have an easy path to being a premier advantage creator in the NBA. However, I am confident that Cade is going to figure it out and dominate at the next level. No one with Cade’s combination of unassisted scoring prowess, shooting projection, passing capabilities, processing speed, and defense at his size has ever failed, and they often become the best players in the league. I think there is a good chance we are talking about Cade in that group in the years to come.
Normally, this player would run away with my number 1 spot, but…
2. Evan Mobley, C, USC
Obviously, I ended up with Cade Cunningham number 1, but Evan Mobley really gave him a run for his money. Since BPM has been calculated for the NCAA, only three freshmen have led the country in the stat: Anthony Davis, Zion Williamson, and Evan Mobley. To quote the illustrious Larry David, “Pretty good. Pretttttttty, pretttttttttty, pretttttty good.” Evan Mobley has the best statistical profile in this class. He averaged per 100 rates of 28.5 points, 15.1 rebounds, and 5 blocks as a freshman. On top of that, Mobley had 4.2 assists per 100 to only 3.9 turnovers. He put up a gaudy 8.8 BLK% and 56.6 FTr. Oh, and if you’re looking for the specifics on his BPM total, 13.7 with a 7.9 OBPM and 5.8 DBPM, per Sports Reference.
Mobley dominated the college game on both ends of the floor and displayed rare traits that often differentiate the game’s best big men from the rest. First, Mobley looked like Kevin Garnett at times switching on the perimeter. While acknowledging all the false proclamations of years past that a player can guard all five positions, I am putting it out there that Mobley actually can. It is almost comical watching some small college guard try to take Mobley off the dribble only to get eaten for lunch. Because of his mobility, Mobley is extremely versatile defending the pick and roll. There is really no good way to attack him, as he can play any coverage you ask him to. Mobley is also a ridiculous rim protector. His block rate is amazing, and the instincts pop off the film. However, what amazes me most about Mobley’s rim protection is his ability to contest shots vertically without fouling–Mobley might have the best verticality technique I’ve ever seen from a prospect. Statistically, this shows up in his foul rate, a mere 2.1 per 40 minutes.
Mobley is an impressive defender, and will immediately provide value on that end. The offense will carry a bit more of a learning curve. The problem right now is that Mobley is skinny and therefore not especially good at traditional post-up scoring. Mobley was in just the 29th percentile on post-ups per Synergy, which is a bit concerning for a seven-footer at the college level. Thankfully, post-ups used for isolation scoring are a dying breed in the NBA for those not named Joel Embiid. The post is used much more as a focal point for facilitation to take advantage of double teams. Mobley is excellent at this. He was in the 100th percentile at passing to cutters out of the post, per Synergy.
Mobley’s processing speed as a passer is amazing for any position, let alone a big. He makes lightning-quick decisions and rarely makes mistakes. High feel is such a swing skill for bigs, as these guys have a much easier path to offensive impact than their turnover-prone counterparts. The question then becomes, is Evan Mobley just Mason Plumlee on offense, or does he have scoring equity? To me, the answer is a resounding yes, despite the post-up inefficiency.
For starters, I think Mobley is going to shoot the three. The typical shooting indicators (three-point volume and percentage and FT%) don’t jump out. But, if you look closer, Mobley has some very promising indicators of touch and future range extension. He placed in the 92nd percentile on runners, according to Synergy, and had 38 unassisted makes from midrange this year (via HoopMath.com), a more than proficient mark in this stat. Unassisted two-point jumpers have often indicated future shooters where traditional indicators have missed out, Khris Middleton and Kawhi Leonard being prime examples. Given his high release point and difficulty of attempts closer in, I see no issue in predicting Mobley to be at worst a pick and pop threat, and at best a self-creator from beyond the arc.
That last point will really dictate the ceiling for Mobley. I hold the slightest amount of self-creation equity with Mobley, as he often initiates offense already. If he works on getting into his shot quicker and extending his range, he could become a legitimate offensive initiator from the perimeter. We are talking about 99th percentile outcomes here, but it is fun to at least think about.
This is why Mobley is in Tier 1. He might have the highest ceiling in the draft, and even if he doesn’t quite hit it, he can still become the next in line of the #2 offensive player, #1 defensive player archetype that so many of the best bigs have filled. Mobley slots in below Cunningham because floors also matter, and his is simply much lower than Cade’s. Mobley has much less room for error to be worth a top selection. Such is the nature of drafting big men. However, I am confident that he is next in line to be considered a premier big man in the NBA.
3. Jalen Green, G, G-League Ignite
The era of heliocentric offense is largely gone. These days, you need guys who can create their own shots around even the best offensive hubs. Chris Paul has Devin Booker; Trae Young has Kevin Huerter. Jalen Green can be that elite complementary scoring two-guard at the next level. Last year, I made a detailed case for Anthony Edwards as the best prospect in the 2020 Draft. In that article, I talk about the notion of compounding skills: the evolution of a raw fluid athlete into a complete offensive package. The case for Jalen Green as a top prospect is very similar, as he is an incredibly fluid athlete with legit scoring gravity. The main difference between the two through this framework is that Edwards was 45-50 pounds heavier than Green. There was no problem projecting Edwards as a guy with threshold strength which would allow him to develop quickly. Where Green has the edge is his shooting. Green displayed a much more polished and versatile shot during his time in the G-League than Edwards showed during his lone season at Georgia. Though slightly different in the specifics, both prospects displayed the same athletic base which has led us to high upside prospects countless times.
We have already watched Green’s skills compound before our eyes. He screamed “wrong initiator” in his first few Ignite games, but he figured out how to build off of his physical tools to the tune of 26/6/4 per 100. Examining the current state of Green’s skills conjures up more images of Anthony Edwards. The handle is fine. His passing is coming along but fairly basic. His processing is still improving, but notable progress has been made. His team defense, fine. You get the picture. It might not be pretty to start out, but don’t overreact to Green’s initial struggles. Anthony Edwards increased his scoring output and efficiency over his rookie year and I expect Jalen Green to do something similar. Once the athleticism becomes functional, the skills will slowly come around.
It could be a slower process than some may like, but players with Green’s athleticism baseline always become high-level offensive players. Zach Lavine, who also possesses the same base and is a common comparison for Jalen Green, finally put together a complete offensive skill set in year seven. Those who can develop like this often do, making Green a great bet to deservedly command a max contract at some point in his career.
4. Jalen Suggs, G, Gonzaga
The last of the truly elite prospects, Jalen Suggs is an easy evaluation in the sense that he is almost a lock to be a very good NBA player. It is merely a question of whether or not he can be transcendent, a guy who can take over as the unquestionable leader of your team. His statistical profile is excellent. He initiated the best offense in the country per KenPom AdjO, and put up a monstrous per 100 stat line of 26.6/9.9/8.4/3.5/0.6 and 5.4 TOs, and his OBPM and DBPM of 4.8 and 4.6 indicate excellent two-way impact.
The obvious statistical weakness Suggs has is his shooting (33.7 percent from three and 75.4 percent from the line–solid but not spectacular). In conference play, that 3PT% dropped to just 25. People talk about Suggs as though he is a lock to shoot, and while I am betting that he will shoot, I am certainly not claiming it to be a sure thing. What Suggs has going for him is the mechanics and clear confidence in his shot, which matters. He also shot in the 97th percentile on runners according to Synergy, on only a 14 possession sample though. Critics have also pointed to Suggs’ inability to get to the rim. However, I am unconvinced that this is even a valid criticism, at least at the college level. Suggs had 63 unassisted rim makes not including putbacks and shot 64.1 percent at the rim according to HoopMath.
Suggs was an excellent high school quarterback with an offer from Ohio St, and it shows up on the basketball court. Like Cade Cunningham, he can hit virtually every pass in the book. Suggs can hit weakside skips with the best of them and can hit the roll man with ease, using manipulation when necessary. Suggs also thrives in transition. He looks like a former quarterback when throwing full-court hit-ahead passes on the money, and his flair with release angles and spin is truly elite. Suggs has what I call “functional flair” on his passes. He often embellished his passes, but it looks like the pass could not have been done any other way.
Suggs has also shown a lot of promise defensively. He fights through screens and mirrors ball handlers excellently and has the requisite strength and quickness to continue this at the next level. Suggs also was an excellent team defender, as demonstrated by his exceptional 3.5 STL%. Suggs’ proficiency getting steals allowed him to play a lot in transition, where he excels. This should continue in the NBA. Suggs can even contest shots at the rim as a help-side rim protector, as anyone who watched the Final Four can attest to. I am skeptical that Suggs can become a true nuisance guard stopper, but I could definitely see some All-Defensive team appearances in his future.
Jalen Suggs has a very high floor, but for me, there are too many questions to reliably project him as a future best player on a championship team. Will he be comfortable pulling up from three or midrange, or will he be relegated to a catch and shoot guy who can attack closeouts? Will his overreliance on two-foot leaping hold him back as a finisher? How frequently will he generate easy buckets at the NBA level against better athletes? Is his handle functional enough to carry a high usage role? There is no doubt in my mind that Suggs will be an excellent cog in the machine with reliable two-way impact (think Jrue Holiday), but the offensive upside isn’t there for me to place him above Cunningham, Mobley, or Green.
5. Scottie Barnes, F, Florida St
Scottie Barnes, the ultimate “if he shoots” prospect. Forget about the shot for the moment. Let’s focus on what Scottie can do well, which is basically everything else. At 6’9, 225 pounds with a 7’3 wingspan, Barnes played point guard for Florida St. He came off the bench in most games for FSU, but the per 100 stat line looks pretty great: 23.8/9.2/9.4/3.4/1.1 and 5.7 TO. His 9.4 AST per 100 is a testament to his extraordinary feel for the game at his size. Barnes makes jaw-dropping passes at times. He finds openings that are barely there and executes the pass. He has no problem finding cutters, rollers, and perimeter shooters in pick and roll and as a short roller. As a connector, Barnes will be excellent, and I think he will be able to take on some handling responsibility at the next level. At his size, that is quite the combination. Barnes uses his handling in conjunction with his athleticism to score well at the rim. According to HoopMath, Barnes’ ratio of unassisted rim makes to total FGAs was 0.15, which is historically well above average. He also shot 70.6% at the rim, accounting for both transition and half-court offense. I think Barnes is going to have no problem scoring at the rim in the NBA.
Then there is the defense. Barnes is a menace guarding on the perimeter, to the point where that was his primary assignment at Florida St. I don’t think Barnes is going to be a perfect 1-5 defender at the next level like Mobley, but I do think that he will be pretty darn close. You may not want to throw him on a dominant post big or a rangey quick guard, but I think Barnes can stop virtually any other player. He can be that guy that you just throw on the game’s premier offensive wings in the playoffs and not think twice about it. This is an incredibly valuable player.
Critics of Barnes say that his scoring game is too much of a liability for him to contribute to winning basketball. He is definitely not the shooter you’d like him to be, as he only shot 27.5 percent from three and 62.1 percent from the line. This really needs to improve in order to feel better about Barnes. If you look at the free throw numbers for the whole season, it is very uninspiring, but if you break Barnes’ season in half, there might be some room for hope. In the first half of the season, Barnes shot 51.4% from the line. In the second half, he shot 75.9%. Barnes actually showed some decent touch from the line as the season went on, so it is certainly possible that a catch and shoot jumper is in his future.
Barnes is not going to have an off the bounce game, but he does not need one. He is super impactful in every other area of the game, and given the fact he put up 23.8 PTS per 100, the guy is not a non-scorer. He will live at the rim to start out, but he can slowly work to become effective in more lineups. If Barnes ever shoots, he will definitely see himself on All-Star ballots. Until then, I am fine penciling him as a high-end playoff starter with some avenues to greater upside.
6. Josh Giddey, W, Adelaide 36ers
In April, I was invited onto Locked On NBA Draft by one of their excellent hosts Rafael Barlowe (@Barlowe500) to discuss why I believe Josh Giddey is a top 10 pick. I will link the entire podcast here. This was recorded before Giddey was widely regarded as a top 10 pick, and it seemed like a bit more of a hot take at the time. You will get a much better sense of my thoughts on Giddey by listening to the entire podcast, but I want to spruce up a quote of mine that encapsulates my thoughts on Giddey. “If you think about the ‘holy grail’ draft prospect on a broad scale, it is a 6’6+ player who can dribble, pass, shoot, make decisions, and defend. In terms of that checklist, Josh Giddey is a 6’6+ 18-year-old initiator in a professional league that has real passing ability, a functional handle, and his processing speed on offense has been proven to be elite. His swing skills are the shot and being an adequate defender. If he hits on these, then Giddey can be in that holy grail prospect archetype.”
I think that quote pretty much makes the case for Giddey this high. He doesn’t have the scoring polish of the top 4 guys, or the defensive ability of Scottie Barnes, but the idea with Giddey is the same. In terms of high-level upside, he’s got it. I just am warier of the floor with Giddey. He did not exactly inspire from behind the arc, and there are not any real statistical silver linings in this regard. He shot 29.3 percent from three and 69.1 percent from the line with mechanics that don’t inspire confidence. Giddey has shown confidence in the shot by shooting a decent volume, so at this point, the case for Josh Giddey shooting is that he will become a solid catch and shoot guy with a lot of in-game reps.
If Giddey does shoot, he could become an offensive initiator. He might be the best passer in the draft. Rafael and I talked about it in more detail on the podcast, but Giddey may be the best passer in the entire draft at 6’8. That is a package that will always be intriguing. I also outlined the case for Giddey to improve as a team defender based on another former NBL prospect: LaMelo Ball. Ball and Giddey had similar struggles on the defensive end, but Ball’s feel and instinctual play transferred over to playing the passing lanes on defense. I could absolutely see Giddey undergoing a similar development.
Josh Giddey is not your normal initiator gamble. Normally, you draft guys who can score and cross your fingers that they will learn to pass even close to Giddey’s level. Instead, here is a guy who can pass with the best of them but needs to learn how to score. These players have lower floors and are a lot less scalable if they do not achieve their high-end outcomes, so there is some risk here. Still, the upside is too tantalizing to put Giddey any lower than this.
7. Jonathan Kuminga, W, G-League Ignite
As a draft prospect, Jonathan Kuminga was all sizzle and no steak in the sense that his perceived archetype is exactly what one looks for in the draft, but the film does not actually show this player. Physically, Kuminga is ready to play in the NBA right now. The G-League website lists him at 6’6, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he was one or two inches taller. He is a gifted mover in his 210 pound frame. He uses his long strides and strength well to play physically at the rim beyond his years and is incredibly fluid in open space. The tools and fluidity package is the allure for both the Ignite prospects slated to go in the top 10. However, we have seen much more bankable skills with Green than with Kuminga. Kuminga has a lot more progress to make on the compounding skills trajectory.
For starters, Kuminga was an inefficient scorer in the G-League bubble, shooting a sub-50 TS%. He settled for a lot of midrange pull ups that he had trouble converting, and he only shot 24.6% from three. He wasn’t particularly efficient at the rim or at the line either. But, as is the mantra with Kuminga, he has all the tools to be an effective scorer. It’s not going to be pretty to start out, but someone with Kuminga’s frame and fluidity will be able to generate efficient looks at some point down the line. Kuminga also showed confidence in his shot. He shot 6.1 threes per 40, which bodes well at his size. He also attempted shots at a higher degree of difficulty, experimenting with stepbacks and pull ups. Kuminga was definitely more wild than he should have been, but I saw significant improvement in this regard from high school. I am betting on Kuminga continuing to reign in his game and play more efficiently.
I also saw way more passing flashes from Kuminga this season. When he plays slow and keeps his head up, he is starting to find some pretty nice passes. Defenses will continue to collapse on Kuminga when he drives, and he will continue to improve his decision-making in terms of when to pass and when to go up with the ball and generate contact. This is happening more in transition and less in the half court right now, but seeing this improvement is really exciting when thinking about what Kuminga can become.
Kuminga is also an enigma defensively, as he had some of the best defensive games from a prospect in this cycle and some of the worst. In high school, he locked up Cade Cunningham when he was engaged, but in the G-League he was a disaster in most of the games. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, he has the chance to be really good, but he needs to buy in.
Kuminga is in Tier 3 because he has All-Star upside. If he buys in on defense and a team is patient with letting his offensive skills compound, he could be a very rewarding upside gamble. The common floor comparison with Kuminga is Jeff Green, and I can definitely get on board with that. I am comfortable projecting Kuminga as an NBA starter with fewer avenues to high impact than Barnes and Giddey. However, the upside is just as high if not higher than those guys.
8. Sharife Cooper, G, Auburn
Now that we are in Tier 4, I am going to start keeping these blurbs a bit shorter. However, it will be difficult to restrain myself with Sharife Cooper. This is probably my first real hot take relative to consensus, and the reason for it is simple: I think Sharife is a starting level offensive engine, and if he ever shoots pull ups, potentially an All-Star level one. Yes, he is small, but the numbers he put up in twelve games at Auburn speak for themselves. Sharife put up a 51.9 AST% and 34.4 USG%. Those are insane marks that only Ja Morant, Trae Young, and Kris Dunn can claim to have come close to. Sharife also tops that group in FTr at 56.0. The only alarming numbers with Sharife are his 3P% (22.8), and his height. He was measured at 6’4 at the combine, but I would sooner trust that someone found Bigfoot than trust that measurement. Sharife is probably closer to 6’0 or even 5’11, but I think he can be one of the rare cases that actually overcomes the difficulty of playing at that height. Sharife also shot 82.5% from the line, so he has the touch to become a catch-and-shoot guy at the very least. You’d prefer it if Sharife could develop a pull-up game, but I am confident that Sharife will be a much better shooter in the NBA than he was in college regardless.
Defensively, there’s no sugar-coating the fact that Sharife will likely be the worst defender on the floor most of the time. It is just hard to be impactful on that end at his size. However, Sharife found a way to absolutely dominate the college level on offense and there is no doubt in my mind he would be valued higher had he been eligible/healthy for the entire season. The variance in outcomes here is wide, but the high end is the highest left on the board for me.
9. JT Thor, F, Auburn
I think I know what my non-draft Twitter friends are thinking: “Is this guy out of his mind?” Debatably, but that is a separate issue. Even some draft Twitter people might be thinking the same thing, but I wholeheartedly believe JT Thor can be a quality starter in the NBA and potentially even better. This is an eye test evaluation for me. The numbers show a scarce archetype, but not necessarily a transcendent talent. But then you pop in the film, and there are glimpses into a player that can be something special.
The first bit of important information about Thor is his age. He is one of the younger players in the draft with an August 2002 birthday. Secondly, he is a freak athlete. He glides across the floor and is a nightmare in transition and as a lob threat. He also has shown promise switching in the perimeter and leaping quickly to block shots at the rim.
A big misconception with Thor is that he is a raw athlete and has only flashed the skills referenced above. However, he has shown legitimate shooting potential and often handles the ball in transition. This is an incredibly unique skill set at his age that I am willing to bet takes him far.
Thor is not very good yet. It’s gonna take him some time, but he is a ball of clay that a team can mold into a truly unique player in the league. The high-end outcomes if he puts it all together are truly enticing.
10. Jared Butler, G, Baylor
I agree with the consensus that there is an upperclassman Baylor guard that can contribute immediately and has some untapped upside. I just think they are focusing on the wrong one. Butler is an NBA rotation guard right now, as he put up a BPM of 11.7 and did so in a way that directly translates to the NBA. First, Butler can really shoot the ball. Like Immanuel Quickley, Butler will contribute immediately as a seventh or eighth man that can shoot the ball. He shot 41.6% from three last year at Baylor and I suspect he will hover around 38-39 percent throughout his NBA career.
Once defenders close out hard on Butler, he will be able to attack closeouts right from the off. He knows how to break down the defense off the bounce better than anyone this year. Butler wastes no movement and makes great decisions with the ball in his hands. It is truly a joy to watch and I’m sure his teammates will love playing with him.
Butler has always been a hard-nosed defender, so he was on my radar as a 3&D point guard for last year’s draft. However, this year he has taken a leap as a defensive playmaker and an on-ball decision-maker. Butler now has a greater AST% than USG%, always a great sign. He also boasts a 3.7 STL% and shot in the 77th percentile on off the dribble jumpers.
All of this points to a very complete guard prospect. Butler can get to the rim and finish there frequently, score off the dribble, and work as a complementary guard. He was arguably the best player on the National Championship winning team, so his contribution to winning can not be overstated. If anything, I am worried that I have Butler too low. Regardless, he is definitely undervalued in this class.
11. Jalen Johnson, W, Duke
Jalen Johnson was an odd study. The consensus narrative surrounding Johnson has been all over the map. He started the season with top 5 hype, and now there is talk of him slipping into the 20s. Off-court stuff notwithstanding, I do not understand the volatility surrounding Johnson. He continued exactly as expected at Duke considering his high school play and flashed a lot of interesting things. If Johnson really does fall into the 20s, I’m happy buying some discounted stock.
Statistically, Johnson was quietly unbelievable. He posted per 100 rates of 30.4/16.4/6.0/6.4 stocks and 6.9 TOs at 6’9, 220 pounds. Johnson topped Cade Cunningham in virtually every statistical category, and that is not something we should overlook. He had games this year where he looked like a top-three prospect in the entire class. The game vs Pitt where he dropped 24/16/7/2/4 on 15 shots comes to mind.
My intuition is definitely not nearly as high on Johnson, however. Despite him shooting 44.4% from three, I am not much of a believer in the shot. The mechanics are dreadful and the results in high school were not good either. He also shot 63.2% from the line, which corroborates my perception of his touch. I don’t think Johnson has the handle or speed/power combo of someone like Scottie Barnes. This makes me much more bearish on his scoring game than I would prefer out of a top ten pick.
As the numbers can attest, Johnson flashed some great stuff as a passer, but he definitely was a bit wild and tried passes that were out of his purview. He also was great as a team defender and in the ensuing transition possessions off of steals, but he is a real liability as a point of attack defender.
Overall, Johnson is just really hard to pin down. When I watch him, I struggle to envision how he becomes a high-impact player unless he hits his 95th percentile outcome or higher. However, it is hard to put Johnson any lower than this due to his statistical production and flashes of unique skill at his size.
12. Franz Wagner, W, Michigan
At this point, I am comfortable predicting that we are out of the realm of any star upside. That is really where Tier 3 turns into Tier 4, but the first four guys in Tier 4 have a bit more upside than the rest of the tier, in my view. From here, I am looking for guys who are definitive NBA contributors for a long time, and no one left on the board provides that assurance quite like Franz Wagner.
At one point, I had Franz as high as 6th. I soured on him slightly because I wanted to hunt for a bit more upside in my top ten. However, I still remain a huge believer in Franz’s NBA future. Statistically, Wagner checks every box you look for to find NBA contributors. He had a 5.8 OBPM and a 6.1 DBPM. The latter mark is especially illuminating for showing how good Franz actually is. He really excels as a team defender, as shown by his 2.3 STL% and 3.2 BLK%. That already pencils Franz in as a quality NBA player, but he will also supplement that with quality offensive play.
Despite his reputation as a good shooter, he will be a bit of a project in that regard. He only shot 32.5% in his two years at Michigan, but he also shot 83.5% from the line for his career. I have no problem projecting Franz as a shooter; it just might not be seen immediately. The really interesting thing about his offensive profile is his playmaking. He dished out 5.6 AST per 100 to just 2.4 TOs. Franz isn’t going to be some ball screen savant, but he can absolutely be entrusted with tertiary playmaking duties at the next level.
It is just difficult to see how Franz fails to become a positive NBA starter given his high-level team defense and projectable jump shot. That is absolutely worth a late lottery pick.
13. Isaiah Jackson, F, Kentucky
Draft twitter loves to lament the Calipari Effect. Coach Cal has a great eye for talent, but never adapts his system to the skillset of the players he recruits. This results in Kentucky players not showing their full arsenal of skills, thus undervaluing their draft stock–the Cal Effect. It’s a process that plays out every year like clockwork, and I think Isaiah Jackson will be the latest Kentucky prospect to develop skills seemingly out of thin air.
More on that in a second. What Jackson did show at Kentucky was rim protection. He can be a bit wild and prone to fouling and jumping at fakes, yet he still put up a 12.7 BLK%. That is not a typo. Jackson does not have the best frame, but he is an incredible mover and ridiculous leaper. Combine that with his natural instincts and you can see why Jackson is a block machine. The team that drafts him will probably look to avoid putting Jackson in a situation where he has to defend an isolation post scorer. But, if he is primarily defending from the help side and as a roll man defender, he could be a terror from day one defensively.
Offensively, Jackson was restricted to being a roll man, which he will be able to do effectively at the next level once he puts on some pounds. However, Jackson occasionally flashed some shooting touch out to the midrange. He also shot 70% from the line, which is respectable for someone who only shot two threes in college and offers a glimpse of hope outside of the Calipari Effect. Speaking of free throws, Jackson generated a lot of them. He shot nearly 10 per 100, good for an FTr of 65.7. Despite his slender frame, Jackson was not afraid of contact and that will bode well at the NBA level.
Painting the full picture here, Isaiah Jackson has high defensive upside and flashed enough on offense to become a quality starting big in the NBA. He also impacted winning at a high level. His On/Off swings were around +14, which is insane. Kentucky was awful this year, but it was not Jackson’s fault. Also, since the Calipari Effect is something we can legitimately bet on, we have to factor in unforeseen offensive developments with Jackson. Perhaps he can pass a bit and we just don’t know. That remains to be seen. The whole package is intriguing enough to put Isaiah Jackson in the lottery for me.
14. Corey Kispert, W, Gonzaga
Corey Kispert has become underrated for being overrated. He is the best three-point shooter in the draft and also shot 62.8% from inside the arc. He is one of my favorite off-ball movers in the class and will make the right pass in a pinch when the offense stagnates. Kispert is also a cerebral defender that does his job and won’t detract from your team on that end. I don’t care that he is 22. This is a valuable player that will play in the league for a long time and will likely return lottery value.
I really don’t think much more needs to be said about Kispert. People bill him as only a shooter, but that really sells him short. I think that Kispert will very quickly have people asking themselves how they overthought him.
15. Moses Moody, W, Arkansas
I am a bit lower on Moses Moody than most of my draft Twitter compatriots, but I still believe he is a worthy mid-first-round talent. I started off the cycle quite high on Moody, but I think I was more enthralled with the idea of Moody than the actual player. What Moody has going for him is one of my favorite heuristics: a projectable jump shot and low turnovers. This often yields useful role players (I should mention Corey Kispert has filled this heuristic for multiple seasons now). Where I differ from those who have Moody in the top ten is that I disagree with the idea that he can be a 3&D+ guy. I really just see Moody as a safe bet to be an NBA player who can be at least a neutral player on both ends.
The only thing that gives me pause about this take is that Moody was strangely amazing at drawing fouls. He shot 186 free throws this year and made 81.2% of them. That percentage means Moody is likely going to shoot, but if he can become a guy who handles at an NBA level and gets to the line like that, look out. I am not inclined to bet on that, though. It is far more likely that Moody is a good fifth starter at his peak. I do not see Moody as a needle-moving defender or an elite shooter. He is just fine at both. He is young and put up numbers in the SEC, but I don’t see him doing much more than he showed at Arkansas.
16. Jaden Springer, G, Tennessee
I am somewhere in the middle of draft twitter and large media consensus on Jaden Springer. Springer seems set to be picked in the 20s, which indicates skepticism among NBA teams as to whether or not Springer is an NBA player. There is no doubt in my mind that Jaden Springer is an NBA player and probably an NBA starter at some point. As a freshman with a September 2002 birthday, Springer put up a crazy stat line of 28.1/7.9/6.6/2.7/1.0 and 5.4 TOs per 100 possessions. He also shot 43.5% from three and 81% from the line and has been an amazing point-of-attack defender since high school. If you think that is not an NBA player, you are kidding yourself.
All that said, I am skeptical that Springer has any star upside. He did not shoot well on pull ups–just in the 25th percentile, per Synergy, and was just in the 12th percentile operating in isolation. This is not a guy I think can be given the keys at any point in his career. He wasn’t horrible around the rim, but he relied a lot on bully ball jumping off of two feet. That is going to be tough to continue at the next level. At this point in the draft, I am not looking for this type of player though. A complementary guard like Springer who can shoot off the catch, make good decisions, and defend the point of attack at his age is a player that playoff teams can use and would be a late lottery pick in most drafts.
17. Trey Murphy III, W, Virginia
I have long believed that Trey Murphy projects cleanly into any NBA system and that he was being critically undervalued. But, teams have clearly caught up to this train of thought, as I might now have Murphy lower than he will be selected. The case for Murphy is obvious, besides the fact that he played for the undisputed best school in the country. He is a 6’9 wing that shot 62% from two, 43.3% from three, and 92.7% from the line. Need I say more? Murphy is also a fluid athlete who really improved on the defensive end under Tony Bennett. In his sophomore year at Rice, Murphy had a -1.1 DBPM, but at UVA, he put up a 2.4 DBPM. This is a considerable improvement that Coach Bennett has often given his players.
At UVA, Murphy displayed a skill set that will give him a role right away. However, there could be some untapped skills that Murphy can show in the NBA. UVA has had a bit of a Calipari Effect of its own in recent years, as demonstrated by DeAndre Hunter and Malcolm Brogdon. UVA has defined roles that players strictly adhere to at the expense of displaying some skills. Given his size, movement skill, and touch, I could absolutely see Trey Murphy displaying a pull-up game off of closeouts and increased passing ability in due time.
I am not talking huge skill leaps, just something that can make Murphy into one of the best 3 & D wings in the NBA at his high-end outcome. Still, even if what we saw is what an NBA team will get, Murphy is a no-brainer bet in this draft.
18. Cam Thomas, G, LSU
Man, this guy can score. As a freshman, he averaged 37.3 PTS per 100 and had a total of 113 unassisted makes, according to HoopMath. Thomas also might be the best in the class at drawing fouls. He shot 220 free throws this season, good for 12.3 attempts per 100, and made 88.2 percent of them. That percentage and the shot difficulty indicate that Thomas will increase the 32.5 percent that he shot from three in no time, and he has also shown the ability to punish drop coverage with his midrange game (94th percentile, per Synergy). Thomas is just good using ball screens in general–Synergy places Thomas in the 95th percentile as a pick and roll ball handler. Thomas is a true scoring threat. The problem is, he can’t do much else.
Thomas is a wreck on defense. He often loses interest on the ball and has not shown instincts as a team defender. Thomas is not a non-passer, but he definitely left a lot to be desired in that regard. Because of this, I do not see Thomas as a future star, but instead, a Jordan Clarkson type guy who can get you a bucket at will. I would not be surprised if Thomas comes away with multiple 6MOY awards during his career. I wouldn’t invest a lottery pick in a perennial 6MOY candidate, but in today’s offensively focused game, Thomas could be a valuable asset to the right team.
19. James Bouknight, G, UConn
The James Bouknight hype train has left the station, with the Thunder reportedly considering him at 6. However, I am inclined to stay behind. Bouknight is undoubtedly athletic. He is a force getting to the rim and has flashed three-level scoring potential. However, in the battle of the bucket getters in this draft, I prefer Cam Thomas. The reason being is I am not sure how Bouknight is going to fare without the ball in his hands. He was just in the 14th percentile on spot ups and the 28th on all jump shots. Synergy is not too kind to Bouknight on some on-ball play types either. He was in the 42nd percentile as a pick and roll ball handler and the 59th percentile on off the dribble jumpers.
There are some positives though. Bouknight placed in the 84th percentile in isolation possessions and in the 98th percentile on cuts. With all this in mind, Bouknight reminds me a bit of RJ Hampton on offense with better defensive potential. He is a great athlete that will be able to attack the rim, but the shot really needs to improve. Bouknight also was a poor decision-maker. He had a 0.66 AST:TO ratio despite not being a terrible passer. That decision-making will be much more difficult to improve if he can not become a decent shooter.
Overall, I think Bouknight definitely has some scoring potential, but I think he has much more to do to achieve it than most people do. I think Bouknight tops out as a 6MOY candidate and spot starter and will definitely stick in an NBA rotation.
20. Usman Garuba, F, Real Madrid
In Tier 5, I am looking for guys who I believe will have a somewhat sustained run in an NBA rotation at some point in their careers. It is fitting to begin the tier with Usman Garuba, someone who I am worried I have ranked too low. I placed Garuba on top of this tier because he is a virtual guarantee to contribute in the NBA. He is one of the best defensive prospects in the draft given his switchability and strength, but I am concerned that his offensive game will relegate Garuba to being a very good backup big man rather than a starter. Garuba did not get to show much at Real Madrid, but he showed a lot of quick decision-making at lower levels. If Garuba shoots, this ranking will likely be too low, but I am not betting on the shot developing. Thus, I feel this is the right spot for Garuba.
21. Keon Johnson, G, Tennessee
Keon Johnson is another player I have soured on quite a bit since the start of the college season. The idea of him as an athletic two-way scorer with blossoming playmaking was really intriguing. However, Keon just did not show enough on offense for me to actually substantiate that idea I had of Keon as a player. He is a ridiculous athlete, having set the NBA Combine record for the max vertical test, and he combines that with genuine mirroring ability on the defensive end. Keon occasionally flashed an ability to use his tools functionally around the rim, but the shot was poor and he did not show touch that would cause optimism for much progression. Because of the combination Keon possesses of being a plus athlete and an advanced defender for his age, I’ll bet on him sticking around. He is just not the high upside initiator that many including me once pegged him as.
22. Alperen Sengun, C, Besiktas
Alperen Sengun is the one player that I truly don’t know how to rank. He won MVP of a great European league at 18 years old. If I were conducting a purely heuristic-based evaluation, I would put Sengun much higher than 22nd. However, his projected role does matter and the fact is Sengun will be a negative defender in the NBA, which is never good for a big man. The only way to counteract not being a good defender as a big man is to basically be Nikola Jokic or Karl-Anthony Towns, which Sungun is not. He is probably better-passing Enes Kanter, which is a rotation-worthy center with enough regular season upside to place at the higher end of this tier.
23. Davion Mitchell, G, Baylor
Davion Mitchell has hovered around this spot for most of the season for me. Historically, similar statistical profiles to Mitchell’s have yielded some excellent guard sleepers in the draft. Alex Caruso, Jevon Carter, and Tyus Jones are a few names that come to mind of guys that have lower FGA per minute, high feel, and some shooting potential. As one of those guys, I think Mitchell is an interesting player. I think Patrick Beverley is a good high-end outcome to aim for. But, Mitchell became a lottery guy who has been mocked as high as 7th to the Warriors. Not sure how we got there.
24. Ziaire Williams, W, Stanford
Williams is another player I am worried might make me look dumb given some of the skills he has flashed. He is a far better shooter than his 29.1 3P% suggests, and he has shown proficiency playing the passing lanes on defense. He has also displayed enough passing to erase any doubt that he can play on an NBA floor at some point. The issue has to do with my philosophy. Williams could very well be a great 3+D wing, but it’s going to take time for him to get there. He had a negative BPM this year, and his lack of strength really shows up on the court. When selecting this archetype in the draft, I prefer someone closer to contributing. Williams may end up better than some of the young wings in Tier 4, but that difference would likely be marginal, and Williams presents a lot more downside than, say, Franz Wagner or Moses Moody.
25. Kai Jones, F, Texas
This one scares me. Again, too many interesting prospects, not enough slots to accurately express my feelings. Kai Jones flashed some all-world stuff this season. At 6’11, he glides across the court and makes jaw-dropping transition plays. He has hit stepback threes and locked up guards on an island defensively. So why is he this low? Frankly, I wish I felt better about his actual big man abilities. His rebound rate at Texas was quite low, and he only had a 4.2 BLK%. I’d like to see that higher for a big man prospect. A common comparison for Kai Jones is Nic Claxton, who was high on during his draft cycle. This does not make a ton of sense since Claxton was the de facto point guard of a subpar Georgia team who also had a high block rate–way more bankable skills for his role. Usually, I am drawn to fluid moving forwards like Jones. I had Claxton in the top ten and Pokusevski fourth last year. Even JT Thor this year qualifies as a bet of this sort I am making. Jones is just a bit too raw for me to put him among these players. Although, that is a decision that may come back to bite me.
26. Tre Mann, G, Florida
Tre Mann is another player I feel very good about projecting as an NBA rotation guard. He is an excellent shooter off the catch and off the dribble, and he has dramatically improved as a passer out of pick and roll. At 6’4, those skills would usually constitute a Tier 4 prospect, but I am worried about Mann’s athleticism and defensive ability. Mann will be a very clear negative on defense at the next level, as he struggles to contain drivers attacking him off the dribble and is not much better as an anticipatory steal and deflection guy. Mann’s ability to put pressure on the rim is also a concern. He is not a bursty athlete, and most NBA defenders will be able to keep him in front. Even though he has a good handle, he has a hard time hunting switches for this reason. Drop defenders will also be encouraged to cheat forward a bit when Mann is in a ball screen. Mann can definitely return first-round value because of his shooting/passing and can probably run some second units eventually. He is worth a gamble for a contending team.
27. Josh Christopher, G, Arizona
The best way to describe Josh Christopher is “shot creator.” He looks for his own all the time and does so relatively efficiently. Christopher also has some defensive upside, as he averaged 2.7 STLs per 100. I eventually trust Christopher will be able to shoot off the catch since he shot 80% from the line. The problem is that Christopher had some of the worst shot selections in the draft. He tried to dominate the ball on a team that already had too many cooks in the kitchen. That does not bode well for his game immediately translating, and it might take some time in the G-League for Christopher to settle into a role where he can thrive. However, the result could end up being a player that provides some scoring and defense off the bench.
28. Nah’Shon “Bones” Hyland, G, VCU
Bones Hyland is a candidate for the title of the best shooter in the draft, even though I would ultimately give that to Kispert. Hyland was elite in terms of volume and efficiency from three, and he shot 86.9% from the line. Bones also really figured out how to get to the rim this past year. His FTr improved from 11.3 to 35.3 from his freshman year to his sophomore year. The combine provided Hyland an opportunity to show his instant offense capabilities. I trust him to be a microwave scorer in the NBA despite his strength issues, and he won’t be a liability on defense either. Stronger guards will bully him on the ball, but Hyland had a good steal rate which bodes well for his impact as a team defender. That is an NBA rotation guard if I’ve ever seen one.
29. Chris Duarte, G, Oregon
Is it likely that Chris Duarte is only the 29th best player in the draft? Probably not. He has an NBA rotation skill set right now. Like Demond Bane last year, Duarte is ready to contribute from the off. He is a guard that can dribble/pass/shoot/defend at the requisite level. The problem, of course, is that he is 24. He is only eight months younger than Devin Booker! That is ancient in prospect terms! There is basically no room for error with Duarte. If a team picks him in the lottery or mid-first, they’d better hope he is an immediate +1-1.5 player. That is not a bet I’m willing to make. However, I am willing to bet that Duarte will return first-round value by providing quality minutes for 7-9 years in the league.
30. Isaiah Todd, F, G-League Ignite
Isaiah Todd is an athletic 6’10 forward that has real shooting potential. He also has the potential to be a positive defender that can guard multiple positions. That is a very intriguing package, but it will not flourish in the NBA without some significant development. Todd needs to develop his frame so he can absorb contact on both ends better and take advantage of his physical tools. He also needs to develop his decision-making and feel for the game. Todd will likely need a couple more G-League seasons to really iron this out, but if he does, he could be an electric scoring talent that makes this ranking look a bit low. Acknowledging that possibility means acknowledging that Todd’s mind and body both need to make significant progress to achieve it. Still, don’t rule out Todd contributing to an NBA team for a long time.
31. Santi Aldama, F, Loyola Maryland
They are not talked about similarly, but Santi Aldama and Isaiah Todd are similar prospects to me. Aldama came on the prospect radar when he won MVP of the 2019 U18 Euro Championship. He then made the bizarre choice of playing in the Patriot League with Loyola Maryland. I think Aldama’s college choice undeservingly took away some of his shine as a prospect. He is a 6’11 stretch big with the handle and movement skill to put the ball on the deck. He has shown the ability to make passing reads after attacking closeouts as well. The three-point shot and free throw percentage improved considerably between year one and year two, and I am confident in that upward trajectory continuing. Combine that with defensive mobility and instincts and we have a worthy bet at this point on the board.
32. BJ Boston, W, Kentucky
I don’t do preseason draft rankings beyond the top 3-5 players. After that range, I think it is a mostly pointless exercise that only serves to feed our anchoring bias. This year, my preseason ranking went like this: 1. Cade Cunningham 2. BJ Boston 3. Jalen Suggs 4. Evan Mobley. One of those is not like the other. In high school, Boston flashed potential as a 6’6 wing who could create off the bounce, had shooting touch, budding playmaking abilities, and showed some team defense instincts. I thought he was going to break out in college. Well, that did not happen. Boston shot less than 40 percent on twos, was awful from three for most of the year, and did not show much in terms of passing. I moved Boston all the way outside the top 30 despite my evaluation of his high school tape. I’d honestly love nothing more than for the Calipari Effect to take hold and turn Boston into a quality wing, but at some point, you have to evaluate the tape you actually watch.
33. Miles McBride, G, West Virginia
I absolutely love Miles McBride. He is a hard-nosed on-ball defender who shot 41.4 percent from three this season. McBride also had 8 assists per 100 to just 3 turnovers. Like I touched on with Davion Mitchell, players with high feel and shooting potential always stick in a backup point guard role. Like some other guards in this tier, I am not sure about McBride’s ability to finish at the rim. He is similar stylistically to Jaden Springer in this regard, but it will be even harder for him to overcome at just 6’2. It also limits his ability to create passing openings. This probably makes him a high-level connecting passer rather than someone who will bend the defense with his passing. Still, McBride is likely to fill a backup role early in his career and excel in it for a long time.
34. Isaiah Livers, W, Michigan
Unless there is a Jontay Porter-type medical situation, I generally ignore medical red flags because I just don’t know enough about weighing that aspect of evaluation. Therefore, I am evaluating Livers without thinking much about his injury history or current injury. He is a 3&D wing. He shot 43.1 percent from three and 87 percent from the line and has been a strong defender throughout his college career. Livers combines his shooting with low turnovers–you know my feelings on that. The problem with Livers is that he is very limited as a passer and handler. He will likely top out as a seventh or eighth man on a contender if he stays healthy.
35. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, F, Villanova
I have had a soft spot for Jeremiah Robinson-Earl since his Team USA days. He plays the game the right way, always looking to make the extra pass and take the shots that come to him. He has fallen outside of my top 30 because I have really soured on the shooting. JRE’s shot was always something I assumed he would develop, but the percentage this season was concerning, and a 71.4 FT% does not encourage me to cut JRE some slack. That said, he can space the floor to eighteen feet, pass, and defend well enough. I trust that he can carve out a role eventually.
36. Rokas Jokubaitis, G, Zalgiris
Jokubaitis is an interesting stash candidate that has developed nicely in Europe and will continue to do so with his new team, Barcelona. I think he can come over and crack a rotation at some point due to his shooting and passing skill. He has been a bit of a mixed bag shooting the ball in Europe, but the free throw percentages have remained encouraging. Jokubaitis has also increased his playmaking output every season and the eye test has always portrayed him as a good passer. He is not an otherworldly athlete, but he has enough craft in ball screens to compensate. I don’t trust him to be a good NBA defender, but Jokubaitis is a polished young player with translatable skill. He will contribute in the NBA at some point.
37. Joel Ayayi, G, Gonzaga
Joel Ayayi is a fantastic “little things” player. He shot 68.3 percent from two, 38.9 percent from three, and almost had a 2:1 AST:TO ratio. He also happens to be the best rebounding guard in the class and the best cutter. Ayayi is a rare case of a strictly complementary college player that I think can do the same thing at the pro level. Ayayi got beaten off the dribble too much for my liking, so it’s hard to project him as a two-way guard. However, as a cutter, finisher, and spacer, Ayayi can provide a lot of energy for a bench unit at the next level.
38. Neemias Queta, C, Utah St
This season, Neemias Queta averaged 6.4 blocks per 100 on a 13.2 BLK%. He also put up a 6.9 DBPM. He used his size to dominate the Mountain West level as a rim protector, rebounder, and post scorer. On offense, Queta scored a lot out of the post. He’ll need to diversify his scoring game, and he has shown a bit of shooting potential from midrange, so he might be able to. Queta also showed real passing ability this year, having put up an AST% of 18.6. For a big, that is great. Queta might not be someone you rely on in the playoffs, but he can be a big who offers a unique skill set as a rotation guy.
39. Quentin Grimes, G, Houston
Quentin Grimes is a former projected one-and-done guard who really did not meet expectations. Two years and another college later, Grimes has changed his role into an NBA-ready shooter. He shot 40.3% on high volume this year at Houston, leading them to a Final Four. He also improved slightly as a team defender this past year. In a shooting-oriented league, Grimes offers the lights-out stroke and pedigree that is attractive on the board here.
40. Greg Brown, F, Texas
41. Juhann Begarin, G, Paris
42. Jordan Schakel, W, San Diego St
43. Ayo Dosunmu, G, Illinois
44. Sam Hauser, W, Virginia
45. Aaron Henry, W, Michigan St
46. Daishen Nix, G, G-League Ignite
47. Kessler Edwards, W, Pepperdine
48. Joe Wieskamp, W, Iowa
49. Josh Primo, G, Alabama
50. Day’Ron Sharpe, F, North Carolina
51. RaiQuan Gray, F, Florida St
52. Sandro Mamukelashvili, F, Seton Hall
53. Jay Huff, C, Virginia
54. Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky
55. Herb Jones, W, Alabama
56. Vrenz Bleijenbergh, W, Antwerp
57. Matt Mitchell, W, San Diego St
58. David Duke, G, Providence
59. EJ Onu, C, Shawnee St
60. DJ Steward, G, Duke
61. Filip Petrusev, C, Mega
62. McKinley Wright, G, Colorado
63. Yves Pons, F, Tennessee
64. Matthew Hurt, F, Duke
65. Luka Garza, C, Iowa
66. David Johnson, G, Louisville
67. Dru Smith, G, Missouri
68. Jason Preston, G, Ohio
69. Justin Champagnie, W, Pittsburgh
70. Austin Reaves, G, Oklahoma
71. Trendon Watford, W, LSU
72. Duane Washington Jr, W, Ohio St
73. Chaundee Brown, G, Michigan
74. Feron Hunt, W, SMU
75. Jericho Sims, C, Texas
76. John Petty Jr, G, Alabama
77. AJ Lawson, G, South Carolina
78. Jose Alvarado, G, Georgia Tech
79. Amar Sylla, F, Oostende
80. Scottie Lewis, G, Florida
Honorary 81st: Terrance Clarke, G, Kentucky