2014 NBA Mock Draft & Analysis
Here is a brand new 2014 NBA mock draft for you. Check it out now to see who your team selects!
- Cleveland Cavaliers (33-49) – Joel Embiid, C, Kansas
The Cleveland Cavaliers are all too familiar with the number one pick. After a shocking selection of Anthony Bennett last year, I think the Cavaliers will look to a big name player. With a solid backcourt between Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters, I believe the Cavs will attempt to bolster their frontcourt. Joel Embiid is the large bodied athlete that can fill that defensive void. Additionally, with Spencer Hawes becoming a free agent the center position looks like it is Embiid’s for the taking.
- Bucks (15-67) – Andrew Wiggins, SG/SF, Kansas
The Milwaukee Bucks were hands down the worst team of the 2013-204 season. Therefore, I think the Bucks will go with the best overall player: Andrew Wiggins. Wiggins is one of – if not – the most athletic draft prospect in this draft. He jumps out of the gym and will be a threat at his prospective position of SG/SF. Especially since starting SG Ramon Sessions will become a free agent; Andrew Wiggins looks to be the perfect fit for the Bucks.
- Philadelphia 76ers (19-63) – Jabari Parker, SF, Duke
‘Together We Build’ is the motto that the 76ers have embraced throughout this throw away season. The Sixers have been accused of intentionally ‘tanking’ to attain a high lottery pick, but this was denied by the organization. Nevertheless, the 76ers are atop the draft board with the 3rd overall pick, and there is no other option besides the freshman Duke standout: Jabari Parker. Parker would join the young team as the starting SF, and be a weapon for rookie of the year Michael Carter-Williams. The 76ers are starting to put the pieces of their puzzle together, and Parker will be an essential piece.
- Orlando Magic (23-59) – Julius Randle, PF, Kentucky
The Magic need an offensive weapon as well as power in the paint. These two needs are right up the alley of the powerful power forward from Kentucky. The Magic ranked 21st in rebounding, and 25th in scoring. Randle would provide both points and boards, but I expect some personnel movement because the Magic currently have 4 power forwards on the roster. This is a bold prediction, but I do not think Dante Exum will go here. Rather the Magic will look to a big man.
- Utah Jazz (25-57) – Dante Exum, PG, International
Dante Exum the mystery man of the 2014 NBA Draft will become a member of the Jazz. Although Trey Burke has performed well as the starting rookie PG, Exum is a valuable option that will only enhance Utah’s backcourt. This 6’6 Aussie has the ability to play both PG and SG, and will excel playing alongside young Trey Burke. With Brandon Rush, Gordon Hayward, and Richard Jefferson all becoming free agents, I think Exum will make an excellent 1 or 2 guard for the Jazz.
- Boston Celtics (25-57) – Aaron Gordon, PF, Arizona
Aaron Gordon was the standout freshman power forward for the Arizona Wildcats. Gordon is an amazing athlete. Although Gordon has a lean body type, he is extremely strong in the paint averaging 8 rebounds per game for the Wildcats. Meanwhile, Jared Sullinger, the Celtics leading rebounder, averaged 8.1 boards per game in the 2013-2014 season. Gordon will be a dynamic weapon for Rajon Rondo and the rebuilding Celtics.
- Los Angeles Lakers (27-55) – Noah Vonleh, PF/C, Indiana
The Lakers have a clear weakness in the frontcourt. Vonleh will be a great defensive asset, and will be able to stretch the court with scoring. 11 Lakers will be free agents this summer, which is essentially the organization clearing house. Amongst those 11 players are 2 centers and 2 power forwards. This opening leaves a perfect space for Vonleh to plant himself in the Lakers’ historic organization.
- Sacramento Kings (28-54) – Marcus Smart, PG, Oklahoma State
The Kings ranked last in the league in assists last season with 18.9 assists per game. Isaiah Thomas, the Kings’ starting PG, who lead the team averaging 6 assists per game, will become a free agent. Marcus Smart will provide a multidimensional improvement to the Kings. Smart can provide points, assists, and steals. With his raw tenacity for the game, I think Marcus Smart will be a great fit for the Kings.
- Charlotte Hornets (43-39) – Doug McDermott, SF/PF, Creighton
The new look Bobcats… I mean Hornets surprised the NBA by making it into the playoffs. However after analyzing the roster, any knowledgeable NBA fan would admit that Charlotte has a solid roster. With the 9th pick in the draft, the Hornets will look to get a fundamentally sound prospect that may potentially blossom into a role play, and even a starter. This player being Doug McDermott who is listed as SF, but I think could play a smaller PF for the Bobcats…I mean Hornets.
10. Philadelphia 76ers (23-59) – Gary Harris, SG, Michigan State
Gary Harris is a dynamic 2 guard that has the pedigree to be a tremendous asset to the rebuilding 76ers. Harris is a perimeter shooter, but also has the capability of driving the lane and creating his own shots. This SG averaged 16.7 points per game for the Spartans, and I think he will continue to be a scorer for the 76ers. He might not be a starter first season, but he will certainly be a talented role player.
11. Denver Nuggets (36-46) – P.J. Hairston, SG, D-League
The Nuggets missed the playoffs this season for the first time since 2003. The Nuggets ranked 2nd in the league in rebounding with 45.4 boards per game, this statistic suggests that the frontcourt is solid. However, the Nuggets were ranked 28th in points allowed per game, which hints at the Nuggets’ defensive struggles. Hairston has averaged 21 points in the D-league, which proves his success at the next level. P.J. Hairston is an experienced SG/SF that would provide scoring and defensive help for Denver.
12.Orlando Magic (23-59) – Zac LaVine, PG/SG, UCLA
In many mock drafts, the Magic are projected to take Dante Exum at the 4th spot. However, I see the Magic taking advantage of drafting a big man early and still being able to draft a talented guard. LaVine would be a good fit for the Magic because he can run both PG and SG. He may need a little more polish, but that will only come with experience.
13. Minnesota Timberwolves (40-42) – Dario Saric, SF/PF, International
The Timberwolves have been in the news lately because of trade talk surrounding Kevin Love. Additionally, with Dante Cunningham, Villanova alum, having a couple of arrests under his belt in early April, I think it is clear that the Timberwolves need to address the PF position. Dario Saric would do just that with his ability to defend and score. Saric almost averaged a double-double in international play with 16.2 PPG and 9.2 RPG. Hopefully, this success will translate into the NBA.
14. Phoenix Suns (48-34) – Nick Stauskas, SG, Michigan
The Suns had a tremendous turn around year, and were one game back from making the playoffs as an 8th seed. The one aspect of the team that needs improvement is assists. The Suns ranked 29th in the league with 19.1 assists per game. With Eric Bledsoe and P.J. Tucker becoming free agents, the Suns will look to add a dynamic SG with ability to play SF. Stauskas is a skilled guard that is lethal from the three, but also can distribute the ball too.
15. Atlanta Hawks (38-44) – T.J. Warren, SF/PF, N.C. State
The Hawks gave the Pacers all they had in the opening round of the playoffs, but fell short in game 7. The Hawks need a more consistent SF, as well as more rebounding. The ACC player of the year can provide both for the Hawks. Although Warren is criticized for his shorter wingspan and lack of athleticism, Warren has put up the stats to prove he is a solid draft pick. Warren has a deep passion for the game, which is portrayed in his sedulous work ethic.
16. Chicago Bulls (48-34) – Tyler Ennis, PG, Syracuse
The Bulls are centralized around a solid defense. Such attention on defense leads to a pedestrian offense. To improve the offense, the Bulls have to look to the quarterback of the floor: the PG. Derrick Rose is a franchise PG, but his injuries hold him back. With Kirk Hinrich and D.J. Agustin becoming free agents, the Bulls are almost forced to draft a PG. The young guard from Syracuse will provide quality offensive and defensive minutes for the Bulls.
17. Boston Celtics (25-57) – James Young, SG/SF, Kentucky
Yet again, James Young is another freshman from Kentucky going in the first round of the NBA draft. Young proved to be an asset to the Wildcats when they made a deep run in the NCAA Tournament. The Celtics need a 2 man because Avery Bradley and Jerryd Bayless will become free agents. Additionally, Young has the length and dexterity to play SF too. He will be a great ‘young’ addition to the Celtics’ rebuilding club.
18. Phoenix Suns (48 -34) – Rodney Hood, SF, Duke
Rodney Hood flew under the radar most of the Duke season thanks to Jabari Parker taking most of the limelight. Nonetheless, Hood is a standout draft prospect that has the potential to bring another dimension to the Suns, who are on the verge of being a breakout team. Hood will most likely be a bench/role player, but in a few years Hood could be a full-time role player or spot starter. Not only can Hood score, but also has a knack for finding open teammates.
19. Chicago Bulls (48-34) – Jusuf Nurkic, C, International
Although the Bulls already have an outstanding rim protector in Joakim Noah, Jusuf Nurkic is essentially a 7 footer that will turn a layup into a floater. With Nazr Mohammed becoming a free agent and Taj Gibson in trade talk, the bulls will need another big man that can defend the rim. Nurkic is big bodied center that possesses both brute strength and gentle finesse, and will hopefully provide both defense and offense for the Bulls.
20. Toronto Raptors (48-34) – Elfrid Payton, PG, Louisiana-Lafayette
In the opening round of the playoffs, the Raptors had an extremely intense series with the Nets. The obvious star of the Raptors is PG – and Villanova alum – Kyrie Lowry, but Lowry’s contract expires this offseason. Although the Raptors will likely re-sign Lowry, there are 3 other PGs that will become free agents. Therefore, Payton will look to be the Raptors’ backup PG, and even role player.
21. Oklahoma City Thunder (59 -23) – Jerami Grant, SF, Syracuse
Practically the entire Thunder team will be back for the 2014–2015 season, excluding Derek Fisher and Thabo Sefolosha. The Thunder are a standout squad that will be most likely aiming for an NBA Championship. Grant is familiar with playing for a standout team, and aiming for a championship. Grant was an integral part for his Syracuse team, and showed tremendous improvement from his freshman year to his sophomore year. Grant will need to bulk up for the NBA, and he will likely be a backup SF for the Thunder. On a brighter note, there is no better mentor for a rookie SF than Kevin Durant.
22. Memphis Grizzlies (50-32) – Clint Capela, PF/C, International
The Grizzlies took the Thunder into 7 games, which is a testament to the Grizzlies’ immense talent. The aspect of the Grizzlies’ game that hurt them all season long was points per game. Memphis managed to score 96.1 ppg, which ranked them 27th amongst the league. Capela jumps out of the gym with his athleticism, but lacks knowledge of the game. Nonetheless, Capela’s physical brand of basketball will enable him to find a spot on the Grizzlies physical team.
23. Utah Jazz (25–57) – Adreian Payne, PF, Michigan State
After the departure of Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap, the Jazz soon came to realize how much they miss having a dominant inside game. Drafting Payne would be a step in the right direction to reestablish the frontcourt of the Utah Jazz. Additionally, current starting PF, Marvin Williams contract will expire this offseason, which provides an opening for the Jazz to draft a big man. If the Jazz do not grab a big man at number 5, then they will surely pick a big man with the 23rd pick.
24. Charlotte Hornets (43-39) – Shabazz Napier, PG, Connecticut
As I’ve previously stated, the Hornets are not a bad team. With Kemba Walker at the helm, the Hornets look to have a strong season next year. It would not be a coincidence if the Hornets look to draft another outstanding PG from Uconn. Shabazz Napier is the foil of Kemba Walker because both led their teams to NCAA championships, then declared for the draft. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Hornets, who need another PG because both Luke Ridnour and Jannero Pargo will be free agents, draft Napier. Why not let one successful husky take another husky under his wing? Also, it doesn’t hurt that Shabazz Napier is an extremely talented guard.
25. Houston Rockets (54-28) – Kyle Anderson, SF/PF, UCLA
It is surprising to see Anderson fall to the 25th pick because he is a very talented and versatile player. However, Anderson’s athleticism has been deemed pedestrian, which has hindered his draft stock. The Rockets are a talented bunch with the preset goal for next season of winning the NBA championship. The starting five for the rockets are solid and the team should look to add depth to their bench. Anderson will be just the guy that will deliver the extra bench depth, and in some years maybe more.
26. Miami Heat (54-28) – Jordan Clarkson, PG/SG, Missouri
The Heat will be re-signing and signing in the offseason, but surely some departures will occur. Ray Allen will most likely retire, and Toney Douglas and Mario Chalmers contracts will expire. The parting of a hall of famer and potential parting of two PGs leaves the Heat looking to add depth to their backcourt. Clarkson has the ability to play both PG and SG, which makes him a viable option at the 26th pick in the draft. Although the Heat’s rebounding game needs major improvement, I believe the backcourt issue will remain top priority because the Heat are looking for a 3-peat and lackluster rebounding has not stopped them yet.
27. Phoenix Suns (48-34) – Glen Robinson III, SF, Michigan
The Suns have the most picks in the first round, and I think they will overlap some positions with their selections. It’d be great if the two Michigan men, Stuaskas and Robinson, were both able to bring their talent to Phoenix. Robinson’s ability to play above the rim makes him an attractive final first round pick for the Suns. Robinson is defensively sound and offensively motivated in his gameplay. The Suns need an energy guy, and Robinson can be that defensive explosion.
28. Los Angeles Clippers (57-25) – Kristaps Porzingis, C, International
Underneath all the media attention on the Clippers, lies an organization that has tremendous potential to make a championship run next season. The only weakness on the team — besides the senile former owner – is the lack of depth at center. The duo of Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan are phenomenal as big men, but backup center Ryan Hollins is becoming a free agent. Leaving the Clippers to look for another backup, this is where Porzingis comes in. This sturdy 7 footer from Latvia will provide blocks and boards for the Clippers. Also, he will be a solid backup.
29. Oklahoma City Thunder(59-23) – Vasilije Micic, PG, International
The Thunder are essentially sound at all aspects of the game. With Derek Fisher probably retiring this offseason, Russell Westbrook will be the only true PG. Although Reggie Jackson runs PG from time to time, Westbrook — who has gone down to injury before– will be left alone. Therefore, the Thunder must look to snag a PG in the draft, and I believe Micic will be a reliable backup to Westbrook. Much like Westbrook, Micic is a tall PG that is not afraid to get physical. This unbounded mentality will be much appreciated on the mighty Thunder squad.
30. San Antonio Spurs (62-20) – Mitch McGary, C, Michigan
The Spurs are the classic fundamental team of the NBA. Coach Popovich instills fundamental in his players, and looks for guys with great attitudes to learn from the hall of fame coach. McGary from Michigan will be a perfect fit for San Antonio. Matt Bonner and Boris Diaw are becoming free agents, leaving the Spurs in search of frontcourt depth. McGary is a proven player who has the potential for greatness in the future. In Popovich’s system, McGary seems as though he could blossom into a firm backup, and eventually a role player.