BallnRoll’s 2020 NBA Mock Draft: All Eyes on Wiseman, Edwards, Ball
An already uncertain draft has gotten a little more weird in light of the COVID-19 outbreak.
With conference tournaments and March Madness cancelled, there is a high chance that there will be no pre-draft combines, thorough medical testings, or workouts this Summer. This year’s pre-draft process may very well be limited to over-the-phone interviews and video analysis.
For a draft that lacks the sort of surefire stardom as those of year’s past, teams are increasingly becoming more concerned about the plenty of landmines that may be hidden within this year’s class. Teams will undoubtedly enter the draft lacking the same amount of information, increasing the risk with every selection.
Nevertheless, this year’s class still holds a number of high-risk, high-reward athletes that may very well excel on the next level and find success in the NBA. The following is the BallnRoll official 2020 mock NBA Draft.
1. Anthony Edwards, Georgia
- Measurables: 6’5”, 215 lbs, 6’9” wingspan
- College Stats: 32 Games, 19.1 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 40.2 FG%, 29.4 3PT%
- Scouting Reports: Size as freshman immediately stands out, NBA-ready body, ability to play through contact and draw fouls at the rim, with good body control. Good lateral and vertical explosiveness. Plays with charisma and flare, shows glimpses of being a versatile scorer from inside the paint, the midrange and the perimeter. Elite athleticism, easy elevation, explosive combo-guard. Has the explosiveness to evolve into an above average weak-side shot-blocking guard. Good at creating his own offence despite lack of spacing in the college game, great slasher with good ball-handling ability to breakdown defenses. Often settles and gets jumper-happy, but shows the potential to become a good shooter on the NBA level. Shows a lot of James Harden/Bradley Beal in his game, but has had frustrating inconsistency throughout his freshman season. Poor passer, struggles with decision-making, and often looks uninterested on the defensive end. Too often Edwards allows far less athletic guards blow by him, sometimes looks lost on defense and lacks awareness on both ends of the floor. Poor offensive awareness evident when Edwards plays off ball or is tasked with running downhill while under-manned in transition. For a guard who will make a living at the free-throw line on the NBA level, Edwards has struggled with his consistency from the charity stripe throughout high school and college.
- NBA Comparison: James Harden lite
2. LaMelo Ball, Illawarra Hawks (NBL)
- Measurables: 6’8”, 180 lbs, 6’11” wingspan
- NBL stats: 12 Games, 17 PPG, 6.8 APG, 7.6 RPG, 37.5 FG%, 25 3pt%
- Scouting Report: Although he lacks the strength and judging by his frame, his lack of NBA strength will be a persistent issue for Ball, LaMelo is a 6’8” versatile point guard with incredible length for his position. Elite basketball instincts, IQ, and feel for the game reminiscent of older brother Lonzo (former 2nd overall pick by the Los Angeles Lakers). More of a score-first guard, Ball still shows a lot of flash in his game with good court vision, offensive awareness, and an above average passing ability. Good ball-handling ability, can finish well at the rim but may struggle against stronger NBA defenders. Elite handle of the ball allows him to breakdown defenses and get to the rim at will. Can either attack the basket or pull up for a very Mike Conley-like floater. Has been in the public eye for nearly five years now and has shown rapid growth and improvement with each passing year. Can both finish and pass with either hand, incredibly skilled and polished for his age, looks to have gained valuable experience playing against older players in international professional leagues. Shows incredible shooting range, knack for hitting tough shots, effortless and quick release on his shot, and the ability to evolve into an above average NBA shooter. Looks to be the type of player to excel in a pick-n-roll offense on the NBA level. Similar to Lonzo, has unorthodox shooting form, often lacks consistency from the field and takes poorly-advised shots. Think J.R. Smith when evaluating LaMelo’s shot selection. Defensively, Ball will struggle mightily on the NBA level. Consistently shows poor defensive effort and will need to rely heavily on his length to makeup for his lack of strength and athleticism. Despite his elite offensive tools, Lonzo has struggled to transition into a consistent above-average player on the NBA level and LaMelo, although more gifted as a scorer, may deal with the same issues in the NBA.
- NBA Comparison: Jamal Crawford/Lonzo Ball
3. Obi Toppin, Dayton
- Measurables: 6’9”, 220 lbs,
- College Stats: 31 Games, 20 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 63.3 FG%, 39.0 3PT%
- Scouting Report: A point guard in his junior year of high school, Toppin wasn’t a highly sought after recruit coming out of high school which saw him end up at a mid-major school in Dayton. Ruled academically ineligible for his freshman year, Toppin will be one of the older lottery picks in the Draft, entering following his redshirt-sophomore season. With his age (22) and overall polish, Toppin is one of the lower risk prospects in this entire NBA Draft. Moreover, he has now accumulated two standout collegiate seasons under his belt. An explosive athlete with elite finishing ability around the rim, Toppin has differentiated himself in a draft that is more guard-heavy by evolving into a legitimate shooting threat and a good decision-maker with the basketball. He has a good mix of strength, athleticism, and versatility, and although he does not have the ceiling of a Wiseman, Ball, or Edwards, Toppin has the potential to immediately transition into a capable role player on a playoff-calibre NBA roster. There are questions regarding his defensive ability and whether he can defend bigger centers in the NBA, but he has the athleticism to keep up with most of the game’s power forwards. If the Golden State Warriors earn the first overall pick, the stability and versatility that a healthy Warriors team can receive from Toppin may turn out to be a selling point for an organization with championship aspirations in 2021.
- NBA Comparison: Amare Stoudemire/Marcus Morris
4. Cole Anthony, North Carolina
- Measurables: 6’3”, 190 lbs, 6’4” wingspan
- College Stats: 22 Games, 18.5 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 4.0 APG, 38.0 FG%, 34.8 3PT%
- Scouting Report: Outside of Anthony Edwards, Cole Anthony may be the most explosive shot-maker in the entire draft. Although struggling with consistency and a meniscus injury, it was very clear to see that when Anthony is on, he is an electric playmaker who can create his own offence and offence for his teammates. His shot is polished, Anthony is able to line the ball up, and has a very smooth and effortless release. Shot the ball at a 34.8% clip from the perimeter and there is some extra range in his game. The Tar Heels have endured a very tough season by coach Roy Williams standards, and with a lack of weapons as in years passed, Anthony was tasked to do more and has shown glimpses of stardom throughout the year. Despite the lack of size, he has shown great body control, an ability to play through contact, and draft fouls at a high rate. He is a good ball-handler, can breakdown defenses, is a shifty, fast-twitch athlete with good lateral quickness and the ability to stop-and-go. As the primary ball-handler, he is able to control the tempo of the game, and shows the ability to make accurate and timely decisions consistently. A confident point guard with the ability to change speeds, rebound the ball for his size, and is capable of defending his position. While his lack of size will remain a question on the next level, Anthony has plenty of tools to turn with which to turn into a star, and with additional scoring weapons, the UNC guard will not be required to remain a high-volume shooter.
- NBA Comparison: Damian Lillard/Austin Rivers
5. James Wiseman, USA
- Measurables: 7’1”, 245 lbs, 7’6” wingspan
- Colleges stats: 3 Games, 19.7 PPG, 10.7 RPG, 3 BPG, 76.9 FG%
- Scouting Report: High-energy, strong, long and lanky with room to get stronger. Elite rebounder on both ends of the floor and explosive lob threat. Runs the floor very well for a big man, great athlete with ability to finish on the break and around the rim. Nice touch around the basket with a clean lefty stroke. Has the length and athleticism to become an elite defensive big man with the potential to become an elite shot-blocker, but often lacks defensive awareness and discipline. Average free-throw shooter in small sample at Memphis, but shooting mechanics look smooth with no real need for much adjustments. Could eventually stretch out his offensive game if the shot continues to develop on an upward trajectory. Raw on both ends of the floor, lacks polish and playmaking ability on offense, but this is partially a byproduct of not playing against elite competition (only played in 3 games at Memphis). Not a good passer or decision maker at this point, struggles to put ball on the floor and create.
- NBA Comparison: Chris Bosh/Nerlens Noel
6. Isaac Okoro, Auburn
- Measurables: 6’6”, 225 lbs, 6’9” wingspan
- College Stats: 28 Games, 12.9 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 51.4 FG%
- Scouting Reports: Whether or not Okoro can sneak into the top-10 hinges on how team evaluators view his offensive upside. That being said, more often than not, it is best to bet on the explosive athlete who already has one crucial aspect of the game down to a science. Okoro might be the best perimeter defender in the entire draft. Capable of defending the opposing team’s best player, Okoro is a strong and physical defender with a high motor. Effortless vertical and lateral explosiveness, good slasher, who can finish with either hand. Understands how to get himself into good position defensively and shows high defensive awareness. Unselfish player who makes correct decisions with the basketball, plays within himself and understands his inefficiencies, which may often make him seem passive on the offensive end. Struggles with his perimeter shot and isn’t a strong ball-handler. Raw offensive talent who will need to refine his mid-range game. Finds most of his points in transition, but lacks offensive versatility. Nevertheless, his frame, explosive athleticism, and ability to defend every player on the collegiate basketball level as a freshman should immediately intrigue teams with the hope that his offensive game comes along in the coming years.
- NBA Comparison: De’Andre Hunter with less offensive polish
7. Onyeka Okongwu, USC
- Measurables: 6’9”, 220 lbs, 7’2” wingspan
- College Stats: 28 Games, 16.2 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 2.7 BPG, 61.6 FG%
- Scouting Report: A physical and athletic undersized center with elite rim-protecting ability. Strong finisher at the rim with a smooth touch around the basket. Great length and athleticism makes up for his lack of height, also displays better awareness on defense than another highly touted big man in this draft in James Wiseman. While by no means polished on offence, he shows some fluidity around the basket with a good back-to-the-basket game and the potential to eventually develop a more consistent jump shot. He is very limited offensively beyond the paint and will not be able to rely on his physical gifts as frequently on the next level. He struggles as a passer and decision-maker, and is a poor ball-handler. Very raw offensive game, but with athleticism and physical gifts, he could turn out to be worth the gamble. His IQ on the defensive end and his elite ability to defend inside and outside of the paint gives hope that at the very least, if Okongwu’s offensive game doesn’t develop, he can be an above average defensive piece coming off the bench. He is a great rebounder and one of the best off-ball moving players in the draft, with potential a lot of promise left untapped.
- NBA Comparison: Montrezl Harrell/Ed Davis
8. Deni Avdija, Macabbi Tel Aviv (INTL)
- Measurables: 6’8”, 210 lbs, 6’9” wingspan
- Euro-League Stats: 26 Games, 4 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 43.6 FG%, 27.7 3PT%
- Scouting Report: With a very limited track record of NBA success for players to come out of Israel, there is a strong belief that Avdija could break that mold. There are reports that the Cleveland Cavaliers are very high on the 19-year old big man and it is increasingly likely that Avdija finds himself inside the top-10 come the NBA Draft. The MVP of the FIBA U18 Championship, Avdija could benefit from the Luka Doncic’s similar and quick path to superstardom in the NBA. That being said, at the same age, Doncic has been able to put up far more dominant numbers in the Euro League against older and far more experienced competition. Nevertheless, Avdija has a very intriguing overall game in the sense that he has guard like tendencies, is able to lead a fast-break, handle the basketball, create his own offense, and find space to get a shot off. At 6’8”, he also has good height and length, and matches it with some athleticism to compensate for his lack of strength. He is by no means a primary ball-handler at this point in his development and doesn’t project to evolve into one by any means, but he is still a very good passer and can use that skill to break down defenses. Dissecting his video, it’s clear that there are aspects of his game that are reminiscent of Doncic’ international style, but the mystery surrounding his transition into the NBA will remain a talking point up until the Draft.
- NBA Comparison: Luka Doncic/Mario Hezonja
9. RJ Hampton, New Zealand Breakers,
- Measurables: 6’5”, 175 lbs, 6’7” wingspan
- College Stats: 8.8 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 40.7 FG%, 29.5 3PT%
- Scouting Report: A long and lanky shooting guard with a fluid offensive skillset, and a smooth and effortless feel for the game. Score-first guard, but a willing and capable passer. Developing perimeter shot, but already shows a capable mid-range game. Very fluid and picture-perfect shooting mechanics with a quick release suggests Hampton can develop into an above average and reliable three-point shooter on the NBA level. Lacks much projectability in terms of his frame and his strength, but makes up for it with good ball-handling ability, decision-making, and fluidity. Makes the game look easy. A very exciting offensive talent, who’s lack of strength could limit him against stronger, more aggressive defenders and could hamper him when defending NBA guards. Good first step quickness, but struggles to finish through contact. Not a good rebounder, struggles in the interior. Hampton’s ability to create his own offense off the dribble and off the catch as well as distribute the basketball should still make him a very appealing prospect inside the top-10.
- NBA Comparison: Dejounte Murray
10. Killian Hayes, France (INTL)
- Measurables: 6’5”, 215 lbs, 6’7” wingspan
- Euro-League Stats: 10 Games, 12.8 PPG, 6.2 APG, 45.5 FG%, 39.0 3PT%
- Scouting Report: An immediate fear for teams could be the not-so-fond memories of Frank Ntilikina, who just three years ago, was a highly touted lottery pick out of France, but has failed to make any sort of strides offensively. Ntilikina is still a very capable defensive guard, but a future star label was slapped on him at an early age and Ntilikina has not lived up to the expectations. Killian Hayes by all accounts appears to be different – a wiry and athletic combo guard that has a more polished offensive game, and although much like Ntilikina, the shot is largely a question mark, Hayes has shot 90.9% from the free-throw line in 10 games during the EuroCup this year, and 82.0% from the charity stripe through 33 games last year as a 17-year old. He also hit 16-of-41 three-pointers (39%) during the EuroCup, showing a much greater willingness to shoot this season. He is a willing passer who remains controlled in the open-court while heading downhill. He has explosive, blow-by speed with the ability to stop on a dime. While many guards can be quick, Hayes takes it a step further by showing great agility, shiftiness, and lateral explosiveness. Hayes is not the defender that Ntilikina is, but his offensive game shows far greater potential. The true test fo Hayes will be not only if he can translate his shot into the NBA, but if he can develop into a capable shooter.
- NBA Comparison: Dante Exum
11. Tyrese Maxey, Kentucky
12. Patrick Williams, Florida State
13. Precious Achiuwa, Memphis
14. Tyrese Haliburton, Iowa State
15. Jaden McDaniels, Washington
16. Devin Vassell, Florida State
17. Isaiah Stewart, Washington
18. Saddiq Bey, Villanova
19. Nico Mannion, Arizona
20. Kira Lewis, Alabama
21. Josh Green Arizona
22. Jahmi’us Ramsey, Texas Tech
23. Tre Jones, Duke
24. Aaron Nesmith, Vanderbilt
25. Aleksej Pokusevski, Olympiacos
26. Theo Maledon, ASVEL
27. Jalen Smith, Maryland
28. Cassius Stanley, Duke
29. Jordan Nwora, Louisville
30. Devon Dotson, Kansas