Predicting the 2021 NBA Draft

We are only a few hours away from the 2021 NBA Draft, so let’s get to this quickly.

If you want to read more complex mock drafts, feel free to Google them. I am, merely, an amateur YouTube highlight scout.

This is more of a prediction draft. I may not always suggest a player for a team but, rather, the type of player they’ll go for.

Here we go.

1. Detroit Pistons: Cade Cunningham (PG)
Anyone else would be a shock, at this point.

2. Houston Rockets: Jalen Green (SG)
They seem to like athletic guards/wing players and don’t really care much about size in the frontcourt (see: inexplicably trading away Clint Capela).

3. Cleveland Cavaliers: Evan Mobley (PF/C)
They won’t take Jalen Suggs – already too many point guards (and they just acquired Ricky Rubio). Mobley fills a need.

4. Toronto Raptors: Jalen Suggs (PG)
He reminds me of a taller Kyle Lowry, with superstar potential. Say what you want about the Raptors, they’ve always been strong at the point guard position, dating back to their first draft.

5. Orlando Magic: Scottie Barnes (SF/PF)
He instantly becomes their starting Small Forward, does he not?

6. Oklahoma City: James Bouknight (PG)
I don’t always understand what OKC is trying to do. They’ve hoarded first round picks like toilet paper. They apparently offered Shai Gilgeous-Alexander to Cleveland for the 3rd pick? They take Bouknight and have a really tall backcourt.

7. Golden State Warriors: Franz Wagner (SF)
Initially, I said Jonathan Kuminga here, but I don’t know if he’d be able to help Curry, Thompson, and Green right away.

8. Orlando Magic: Jonathan Kuminga (SF)
If Kuminga falls to 8, the Magic have no choice but to take him, right? I should point out that they could even take Kuminga at 5.

9. Sacramento Kings: Moses Moody (SG) or Alperen Sengun (PF/C)
They always seem to do something strange. They’ll draft Moody and then trade away Buddy Hield. Or, they’ll take Sengun. I don’t think either pick would fall under “strange” though.

10. Memphis Grizzlies: Josh Giddey (PG)
I really like Giddey and he’s been linked to Memphis.

11. Charlotte Hornets: Kai Jones (C)
It has to be a centre, it just has to be.

12. San Antonio Spurs: Jalen Johnson (SF/PF)
The Spurs need some oomph in the frontcourt. Johnson left Duke halfway through the season to focus on preparing for the Draft. That might not sit well with some teams, but will that matter if he’s a really good player three years from now?

13. Indiana Pacers: Moses Moody (SG) or Corey Kispert (SG)
If Moody is still there, I can see him going to the Pacers. If not, Kispert.

14. Golden State Warriors: Davion Mitchell (PG)
The idea would be to have him as a reliable backup to Steph Curry. He is an elite-level defender and can shoot.

15. Washington Wizards: Chris Duarte (SG)
They, literally, just traded Russell Westbrook to the Lakers (not official yet), so I’m assuming Bradley Beal is next. Duarte fills a hole at guard.

16. Oklahoma City Thunder: Ziaire Williams (SG/SF)
Another long, lengthy player to go with SGA and James Bouknight.

17. New Orleans Pelicans: ??
If they like a Point Guard on the board, I can see that being their pick. It allows them to move on from Lonzo Ball. Perhaps Davion Mitchell is still available here.

18. Oklahoma City Thunder: ??
They’ll go for a frontcourt player who still has to grow into their body, but has a lot of potential.

19. New York Knicks: ??
It’s going to be a flashy player. Someone whose main highlights are dunks because they aren’t a good shooter yet.

20. Atlanta Hawks: ??
Athletic Power Forward, who is developing a three-point shot.

21. New York Knicks: ??
If there is a player who has dropped, they’ll get taken by the Knicks with this pick.

22. LA Lakers: ??
It looks like this pick is headed to Washington. Washington will take a wing player if there is one available in this range.

23. Houston Rockets: ??
The first of two picks in a row. They go with a big man here because someone besides Christian Wood has to rebound the basketball.

24. Houston Rockets: ??
Perhaps a Point Guard?

25. LA Clippers: ??
Should probably take a Point Guard and see if they can develop him into a player they can trust.

26. Denver Nuggets: ??
They could use some reinforcements at the Guard position.

27. Brooklyn Nets: ??
I wonder if they package this pick with #29 and try and make a deal to movie up. OKC likes picks.

28. Philadelphia 76ers: ??
They’re taking a shooter.

29. Brooklyn Nets: ??
What does a team that has Irving, Harden, and Durant need? Health. They need health.

30. Utah Jazz: ??
If there is an athletic wing player available, they should draft him. It’s one thing they’re lacking.

That’s it for the first round.

I’m sure there will be a bunch of trades tonight, that won’t be made official for a few days, so expect some teams to draft players on behalf of other teams.

Expect at least one team to “buy” a second round pick from a team.

Brooklyn has five picks in this draft – three in the second round. I don’t think they’re drafting five players. Look for them to trade some picks, either to move up, or for players.

Oklahoma City has six picks – three in the second round. They love acquiring picks, so don’t be surprised if they trade some away for future picks.

I don’t really have any other predictions, other than to say that the Sacramento Kings always do questionable things on draft night. So, the stage is waiting for them.

Thanks for reading!


About Paul

I think of my blog as an all-you-can-read buffet. There's something for everyone and complimentary mints at the door as you leave.
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