Ranking the top 80 players in the 2021 NBA draft with the NCAA tournament in the rearview.
With three months until draft night and the NBA’s regular season winding down, the league at large has begun shifting full focus to the off-season. Players have until May 30 to declare as early entrants for the draft, after which point the predraft process will open up in full, leading up to the combine and lottery at the end of June. Our Big Board is long overdue for an update, and fully expanded out to 80 prospects as we all attempt to make sense of the big picture moving forward.
As usual, the Big Board is primarily based on my personal evaluations from both live viewings and on film, in many cases dating back several years. The rankings also incorporate feedback and opinions I glean from NBA executives, scouts, and others around the industry. This is not a mock draft, and team fit is not considered, but it is also intended to be somewhat representative of individual prospects’ ranges and the available player pool as a whole.
As far as the rankings are concerned, much has changed since February, with the NCAA tournament in the rearview. There’s been plenty of time to get a handle on who these players are. Underclassman who have announced their plans to return to college next season are not included on this list, but all other prospects were given consideration. This board will inevitably shift again as players gradually opt to return to college, and as the international second-round player pool comes into clearer focus.
You can find our most recent mock draft here.
1. Cade Cunningham, G/F, Oklahoma State | Freshman
Height: 6′ 7″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 1
Whether or not Cunningham lived up to the hype this season depends on your vantage point, but his body of work was substantial: he led Oklahoma State to a favorable tournament seed, engineered an impressive win over national champion Baylor, and lifted a relatively average supporting cast farther than anyone expected. Consider the bevy of blue-chip college stars that preceded him and didn’t get the job done, and Cunningham’s season speaks for itself—his individual numbers aren’t as flashy as expected, but opponents geared up to stop him every single game. Cunningham’s size, playmaking acumen and remarkable feel for decision-making at a young age are all strong selling points, and he’s turned himself from an average shooter into a legitimately good one. He’s not an elite NBA athlete and still struggles to finish more than you’d like, but a steady diet of spread pick and roll might maximize his gifts and minimize his weaknesses in the long run. Cunningham’s competitive makeup and leadership is the icing on the cake here, and he’s consistently shown a willingness to make plays and close out games. As a malleable, versatile guard without a truly glaring weakness and several special qualities, Cunningham has held the No. 1 spot on this board all season. There may be some debate, but there shouldn’t be much doubt, and it ultimately would be tough to be the team that passes on him.
2. Evan Mobley, F/C, USC | Freshman
Height: 7′ 0″ | Weight: 215 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 2
There’s a real argument that Mobley is the most intriguing true big to enter the draft since Karl-Anthony Towns in 2015, or if you’re feeling bold, Joel Embiid in 2014, and he’s built a sneaky, if not popular, case as an alternative option at No. 1. Mobley looks like the type of mobile shot-blocker and space-eraser you can build a defense around, with overwhelming length and exceptional instincts, rarely fouling and playing a mature, composed game most nights. The big variable here lies on offense, where Mobley has always been an excellent ball-handler and passer for his size, but falls something short of being a No. 1 option. Mobley can be too deferential sometimes, and while there’s much more substance to his game than volume offense—he’s blossomed as a playmaker and projects to shoot the three effectively—he’ll be more comfortable playing next to ball-dominant teammates than shouldering the load, at least in the early part of his career. His long reach makes it difficult to alter his shot in the paint, and he’s a steady finisher, but quality touches often have to be manufactured for him. But even if Mobley levels out as a second or third offensive option, noting his probable defensive impact, you’ve got a special prospect.
3. Jalen Suggs, G, Gonzaga | Freshman
Height: 6′ 4″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 4
Gonzaga’s disappointing end to the season doesn’t diminish the ways in which Suggs set himself apart this season, and his level of composure, focus and consistency throughout the tournament was impressive. And for the most part, NBA teams have become extremely comfortable with everything he brings to the table: Suggs is a fantastic athlete, will play either guard spot, competes at a high level all the time, and has a range of ways to positively impact games as a defender, playmaker, and scorer. As he continues to polish his skills, there’s far more upside than was readily evident coming into this season, and it’s hard to see a scenario where he’s not a viable long-term starter at worst. Gonzaga’s team context covered for his limitations as a halfcourt creator, but the NBA’s trend toward multiple-playmaker lineups helps mitigate those concerns, and he’s a blur in the open floor. With his quickness, strength and instincts, Suggs could end up as one of the better on-ball defenders in the league if he wants to be. While he may still be more hyper-athletic utility guard than high-usage playmaker in the long run, that version of Suggs could still be a star.
4. Jalen Green, SG, G League Ignite
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 180 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 5
By the end of the G League’s season, Green was Ignite’s best player, and already one of the better individual scorers in the competition, bolstering his candidacy as a top five pick and showcasing how far he’d come over the course of the past year. He’s a terrific athlete and has begun to translate his remarkable high school flashes into consistent production, showing off some latent playmaking ability when he’s willing to share the ball. The knock is that Green remains a bit one-dimensional, often struggling to impact the game without the ball in his hands and still playing conceptual catch-up on the defensive end. He needs to shore up his handle in order to maximize his physical gifts, and it’s worth noting he may be a bit smaller than his listed height. Green can be streaky shooting from distance, due in part to his proclivity for tough attempts, and will have to become a more efficient scorer to maximize his ability. But Green has shown the ability to pick things up quickly, and his trajectory at the moment is encouraging.
5. Jonathan Kuminga, F, G League Ignite
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 3
While Kuminga certainly helped himself with G League Ignite, his play tailed off a bit toward the end of the shortened season, and the window for him to play himself to the top of draft boards wound up being rather brief. He remains one of the draft’s most physically gifted prospects, and will be ready to play with NBA athletes immediately. Kuminga tends to play a bit harder on offense than defense, but has the ability to be a high-impact player on both ends, and has the tools to check big wings and switch screens. There’s a lot of room for improvement as a scorer, as well: Kuminga can get into the paint with ease and make plays for teammates, but has to get his three-point shooting to a passable level, improve his handle, and learn to do damage away from the ball. Kuminga’s potential is obvious, and he rounds out the top five comfortably.
6. Keon Johnson, SG, Tennessee | Freshman
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 10
Johnson came on strong at the end of the season and left a strong impression on scouts at the SEC tournament, many of whom were seeing him live for the first time. On whole, his freshman year was a mixed bag, but his flashes of brilliance are encouraging. He’s quick getting into the paint, an elite run-jump athlete, and a disruptive defender with a team-first mentality. Drafting Johnson in the Top 10 is a major bet on those traits coalescing into a high-level starter. There’s reason for concern here, too: he doesn’t have consistent range on his shot, has a rudimentary handle, and doesn’t have much pedigree as an on-ball creator, although Tennessee handed him more decision-making responsibility as the season went on. Johnson competes hard and should find a way to be a useful contributor in a team context, at worst. But his athletic ability and potential for rapid improvement make him a fascinating bet after the draft’s biggest names are off the board.
7. James Bouknight, SG, UConn | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 190 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 7
Placing Bouknight this high is based primarily on what he showed in the early part of the season, before having elbow surgery. He looked every bit of a dynamic NBA scorer in December, showcasing his scoring instincts, acrobatic slashing, and natural creativity getting his own shot. Bouknight has a deeper bag of tricks than most college scorers, and despite not being particularly big for his position, he’s a terrific athlete and unafraid of physicality. He missed more than a month of the season and was never quite the same player when he returned, racking up numbers, struggling with efficiency, and perhaps not entirely healthy. Bouknight is a better shooter than his percentages suggest, but will have to expand his depth as a playmaker to maximize his potential for high usage. Bouknight’s competitive makeup and consistency at least point to a degree of useful floor, and there’s starter-level upside here if things break correctly.
8. Jalen Johnson, F, Duke | Freshman
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 7
Johnson’s brief stay at Duke and unceremonious exit from the program didn’t help his standing as a prospect, and where he lands on draft night will depend to an extent on how teams choose to weight the intel. At the same time, Johnson’s range of skills at his size demands a close look, particularly given the dearth of proven prospects slated for the the mid-to-late lottery range. In the 13 games he played before departing college, Johnson showcased his passing skills and versatility, but his limitations as a halfcourt scorer, iffy jump shot and intermittent competitive effort were also on display. He’s always had the potential to be a terrific two-way player, and his ability to handle and play in transition is better suited for an NBA floor. Johnson will have more to answer for than many of his peers over the course of interviews and workouts with teams—his range likely runs into the teens—but with the way this draft has shaped up, teams will need to think hard about him in the lottery.
9. Scottie Barnes, F, Florida State | Freshman
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 225 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 8
Barnes’ unique skill set may turn out to be a better fit for the NBA than college: he’s at his best when accessorizing more talented teammates, but struggles when asked to carry a heavy offensive load. He boasts a remarkably long wingspan and should be a versatile net positive as a team defender, and has enough ball skills to grab and go off the glass. Barnes is also an excellent passer for his size. On the flipside, he’s not extremely quick or explosive, struggles to make shots from distance, and isn’t yet a functional enough ballhandler to make a huge impact as a point forward. Barnes had a good freshman year overall, and the fact he’s extremely competitive helps matters. The matter of personnel fit will make him a tougher sell for some teams. It’s going to take Barnes some time to be passable on offense, but if his shot comes along, he’s likely a starting-caliber forward. If it doesn’t, his other skills could still make him a useful rotation piece.
10. Kai Jones, F/C, Texas | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 11″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 17
While there’s some general consensus that Jones is unlikely to help an NBA team much next season, it’s easy to see the upside tied to his unusual mobility, length, and growth trajectory. He came off the bench for most of the season at Texas, but was able to showcase his ability to block shots and sprint the floor, and also flashed the makings of a viable jumper. By the end of the season, Jones had a better grasp on how to consistently impact games with activity. His slender frame is less an issue in today’s NBA, where few teams bother posting up on a regular basis and big men with similar body types like Chris Boucher are having success. Jones needs to become a more consistent rebounder, and can still be foul prone, but he’s fairly skilled and moves like a wing on the perimeter. Ideally, he’s a viable stretch big a couple years down the line. If he can start to turn his flashes into consistent production and has an opportunity to build confidence next season, Jones could pay off in a big way down the line. Opinions vary among scouts as to how likely that outcome is, but the upside here is obvious.
11. Joshua Giddey, G/F, Adelaide 36ers (Australia)
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 39
Giddey has done wonders for his stock over the past couple months, to the point where his productivity in the NBL is impossible to ignore. He’s arguably the best passer in the draft, has great size, thinks the game to an advanced degree, and doesn’t turn 19 until October. Giddey is an average athlete and is still developing a reliable jumper (though he’s made definite strides in that area). Best-case scenario, you’d want him to play on the ball to maximize his passing skills, but he’ll need to get stronger and work on creating his own shot in order to get there. His shot is a bit mechanical and will likely take some time to develop. Defensively he has some basic feel for where to be, but needs to work on his technique and footwork to have a chance at containing the perimeter. Still, he’s tough, mature, and has held his own against much older competition this season, and that success is a strong indicator he’ll find a way to adjust in the NBA. There’s a lot of room for optimism here, and his innate versatility and feel are great selling points.
12. Corey Kispert, SF, Gonzaga | Senior
Height: 6′ 7″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: 9
As by far the most proven shooter in the draft, Kispert has left few questions surrounding his professional fit. He scored with otherworldly efficiency all season, particularly for a jump shooter, and projects neatly into a similar role in the NBA as a ball-moving, floor-spacing forward who can contribute immediately. Kispert primarily defended fours all season and has proven strong and tough enough to do that situationally, which adds some nice versatility to his profile as a role player. With the premium on high-level shooting, he’s a viable option in the late lottery in spite of his age. A team might be paying full price for a player who’s somewhat close to his ceiling, but Kispert is pretty hard to nitpick. Simply becoming a better version of what he already is shouldn’t be much to ask, and will be enough to carve out a long career.
13. Franz Wagner, F, Michigan | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 11
Wagner’s blend of size and basketball IQ makes him an appealing option, and while his progression this season didn’t show up in the scoring column, he was a driving force for a very good Michigan team. His season ended on a low note—the NCAA tournament was a missed opportunity to firmly lock himself in as a lottery pick—but he’s a well-rounded player who will fit well alongside better teammates in the pros. Wagner will need to improve his three-point shooting to maximize his potential, but there aren’t any glaring holes in his skill set other than average athleticism and bouts of inconsistency. He makes quick decisions with the ball and plays an unselfish style, but needs to be more assertive at times. Still, with all he does well, it’s not hard to see a fit in the NBA, and his floor is fairly solid.
14. Moses Moody, SG, Arkansas | Freshman
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 12
The NCAA tournament wasn’t overly kind to Moody, but his flashes over the course of the season and projectable shooting stroke profile nicely into an NBA wing role. The hope is that he’ll develop into a reliable, low-maintenance 3-and-D type piece, with upside if he can make strides with his ball skills and playmaking. Moody isn’t particularly explosive and struggles to convert around the rim in traffic, but he found ways to be effective this season by drawing fouls. He may never put much pressure on the basket, but if he can learn to attack closeouts and make plays in those situations, it’ll be a big help. His long frame profiles well defensively away from the ball. Moody isn’t an overly flashy player, but he has an easy pathway to value, and nice upside if he can fashion himself into a more dynamic player working off the catch.
15. Usman Garuba, F/C, Real Madrid (Spain)
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 230 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 14
Garuba’s athletic tools, defensive acumen, and wealth of high-level experience at his age all suggest he finds a way to help an NBA team next season. While not a rim protector in the truest sense, he projects as a switchable, physical defender who can center small lineups or play the four next to another big. He has all the qualities to be an exceptional player on that end early in his career. The downside here is that Garuba isn’t an exceptionally skilled scorer, with most of his looks created for him by others, and is a below-average jump shooter with poor numbers from the free throw line. His offensive role will likely be marginal at best in the early stages of his career, which places more stress on him being a high-end defender to compensate. Garuba’s advanced understanding of team basketball will help his adjustment, but the upside is primarily tied to how much better he shoots in the long run. Without that piece, he may be better suited for a rotation role than as a legit starter on a good team, but that’s a fine play in this part of the draft, particularly factoring in his age.
16. Davion Mitchell, G, Baylor | Junior
Height: 6′ 2″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: 32
Mitchell has benefitted more than any prospect from March Madness recency bias, riding the wave of Baylor’s title run to his current status as a potential lottery pick. Whether or not that’s justified is a fair argument. Factually, Mitchell is an excellent athlete, tenacious on-ball defender, and took his offensive game to another level this season. Yet there are still some questions about his jumper (he’s never been a great free throw shooter), and he plays a somewhat predictable style of offense, predicated mostly off of strong-hand drives. It’s clear that he’s more than a specialist, but even the best guard defenders in the NBA struggle to defend the best guards, and Mitchell’s average size will work against him in that department. There’s still a lot to like here, but he’s a much better bet if you’re not drafting him to be a future star. The Top 10 feels a bit rich, but it’s not out of the question based on how his stock is trending.
17. Alperen Sengun, F/C, Besiktas (Turkey)
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 240 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 23
After entering the season somewhat off the radar, Sengun has put together a historically prolific season for a true 18-year-old at any level, let alone Europe, and has built a pretty urgent first-round case. He remains an exceptionally tricky eval, as his game is unorthodox and fairly simple, relying primarily on deep post catches, soft hands and strong finishing skills to rack up points in the paint. Sengun doesn’t have great size or length and may not be able to succeed at center full-time due to defensive concerns, but there’s optimism he’ll eventually space the floor, which would add a key layer of offensive utility. While the narrative surrounding what the NBA values in its centers is a tad fraught at this point, the success of Nikola Jokić and Joel Embiid has pushed teams teams to think harder about skilled bigs with a chance at being successful outliers. Sengun isn’t either of those players, but he’s been so good at such a young age, and it’s difficult to ignore.
18. Jared Butler, PG, Baylor | Junior
Height: 6′ 3″ | Weight: 190 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 20
Leading Baylor to a title should have more or less cemented Butler’s case as a first-rounder. He was already one of the more bankable guard prospects in the draft, having proven himself on both ends as a quality player with a good understanding of his own capabilities. He’s dangerous with or without the ball, can facilitate with a ball screen and score inside and out. Butler’s change of pace off the dribble is solid, and while not a spectacular athlete, he’s a multiple-effort defender and crafty ballhandler who’s been highly consistent. You aren’t drafting Butler to be a superstar, but there’s a lot to like with him as a supporting piece, and it helps matters that he’s yet to turn 21. His intangibles off the court only bolster his case.
19. Tre Mann, PG, Florida | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 190 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 37
Although Mann is a bit of an acquired taste for some scouts, he came on pretty strong over the final month of the season and has started translating his ability into production. He has great size for a ballhandler and took a big step forward shooting the ball, with a major leap up to 40% from three and 83% from the foul line. Mann is crafty off the dribble and capable of creating space for his jumper, with his upside tied to that progression as well as his nascent ability to consistently make plays for teammates. However, he’s not a particularly physical player, can be stagnant without the ball in his hands, and too often takes a casual approach to his role, which sporadically damages his impact on gameflow. If Mann can fine-tune his game to add value away from the ball, he could be a nice fit in a dual-handler offense and offer helpful lineup versatility. If his complementary skills don’t improve, there’s a lot hinging on his ability to stay efficient. He’s a worthy first-round option.
20. Joel Ayayi, SG, Gonzaga | Junior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 180 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 28
Ayayi never quite got full credit for his role in Gonzaga’s success this season, but he’s matured into a smart, versatile contributor with a skill set that translates neatly into an NBA role. He’s an exceptional off-ball guard, canny cutter and mover, and has made some nice strides as a three-point shooter that bode well for his long-term fate. Ayayi isn’t a creative playmaker, but he makes quick decisions with the ball and is an above-average passer. He should be able to step in alongside ball-dominant stars and make life easier for his teammates on both ends of the floor. He’s an opportunistic, smart team defender and should be able to add more weight to his frame. Scouts love Ayayi’s basketball IQ and all-around game, and while this is the very high end of his range, he’s a worthy first-rounder.
21. Chris Duarte, SG, Oregon | Senior
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 190 | Age: 23 | Previous rank: 38
All Duarte conversations come with the caveat that he’ll turn 24 before he makes his NBA debut. But he was exceptionally good this season and plays with a maturity befitting his age, and it’s easy to see him succeeding as a plug-and-play pick in the late first round. He may be good enough to walk into bench minutes immediately, as a reliable catch-and-shoot player and smart defender who should fit neatly into a supporting role. Duarte was superbly efficient for Oregon, and his strengths are translatable, making this a fairly uncomplicated eval. Noting his age, Duarte will be more appealing to playoff teams looking for immediate help, but landing a reliable shooter on a bargain contract is a pretty good deal no matter what.
22. Ziaire Williams, SF, Stanford | Freshman
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 13
A forgettable year of college exposed Williams’ shortcomings as a player. While there’s still an outside chance he can sneak back into the late lottery during the predraft process, his range runs into the 20s, where the risk becomes easier to accept. His blend of size, feel, and shooting ability has always held strong theoretical appeal dating back to high school, but the truth of the matter is that the actual results have often been inconsistent. Williams’ lack of physical strength continues to be a major impediment to his ability to play downhill and create for himself, and he too often settles for jumpers as a result. His slight build makes it difficult to see him making much of an impact on defense. Due to the strange nature of this season, he should be afforded a bit of slack, but Williams has a steep adjustment ahead of him, and is a bit behind the ball on the learning curve right now. The league-wide premium on tall wings should ensure he’s picked in the first round.
23. Jaden Springer, G, Tennessee | Freshman
Height: 6′ 4″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 21
Although Springer cooled off quite a bit in the final weeks of the season, he put together a pretty solid year on whole for a true 18-year-old. There’s still a broad level of concern surrounding the translatability of his playstyle, as he’s long been reliant on his size and strength to create offense. Springer shot the ball well this year on limited volume and was an excellent defender, both of which should be viewed with an optimistic lens given his age. But he’s undersized for a two-guard, more wired to score than to set up teammates, and was oftentimes too easily influenced away from the rim and into more difficult shots. Springer plays a two-footed attacking style that inhibits some of his ability to separate from defenders downhill because he’s not that explosive. But he does have a good understanding of where his spots are and has shown some ability to improvise off broken plays, find teammates on the interior off drives, and finish creatively. There are a few different pathways for Springer to ultimately succeed within a role, and at his age, he’s a nice play in this range of the draft.
24. Day’Ron Sharpe, C, North Carolina | Freshman
Height: 6′ 11″ | Weight: 265 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 18
Sharpe is more of a throwback center, which can come with a bit of a stigma, but he’s well-equipped to be a long-term NBA contributor and warrants consideration in the mid-to-late first round. His minutes were limited at North Carolina for a few reasons: the Tar Heels had to find minutes for four different bigs, Sharpe was slightly foul-prone, and his conditioning at times left something to be desired. He plays extremely hard and sometimes tires himself out, but that should be viewed as a positive. He was one of the best rebounders in college basketball, with soft hands and good instincts in pursuit of the ball. Sharpe is also an exceptional passer and makes quick decisions with the ball, adding upside and the potential to be deployed creatively as a screener. He’s unlikely to become a good jump shooter, which caps some of the upside. But Sharpe has enough mobility to survive on defense, and it’s difficult to find bigs with his type of motor, skill, size, and intangibles rolled into one.
25. Roko Prkacin, F, Cibona (Croatia)
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 31
Prkacin is one of the most skilled nominal bigs in this draft and won’t turn 19 until November, making him the youngest player currently projected to be drafted. Penciling him into a role requires a little bit of imagination, but with the way he can handle, pass, screen and make decisions at his size, Prkacin has a pretty interesting offensive profile and has benefitted from facing primarily older competition in the past few years. There are some key concerns here: his jump shooting has improved, but he’s a ways away from being a reliable floor spacer. Prkacin doesn’t bring a ton to the table defensively and won’t protect the rim much, although his feel for positioning is fairly sound and should give him a chance to make it work. Even without an elite skill, he may be a player with a wide enough array of strengths to make a difference in the long run. He’s an intriguing investment in this part of the draft.
26. Isaiah Jackson, F/C, Kentucky | Freshman
Height: 6′ 10″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 34
Jackson is a little bit polarizing for scouts: he’s an incredible athlete who has real potential as a rebounder and shot-blocker, but his limited offensive game and relatively low basketball IQ are concerning. In a lot of ways, he’s comparable to Mitchell Robinson, but he’s not as tall or as long, and won’t be as physically dominant in the short-term until he adds strength. Jackson’s prodigious block rate and work on the offensive glass make him a worthwhile investment on a guaranteed contract, but he’s also extremely foul-prone, his impact is inconsistent, and the G League may be his best path to playing time next season. Still, it’s hard to deny how productive Jackson was per-minute this season, and he’s a viable first-rounder. His range starts in the late lottery, but is somewhat wide right now.
27. Cameron Thomas, SG, LSU | Freshman
Height: 6′ 4″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 33
Dating back to high school, the book on Thomas has been that he’s a gifted scorer who struggles to impact games in any other way. That was pretty much the case at LSU—but he also proved to be quite good at it. Some players are just able to get buckets, and Thomas does that, but he also commands a certain amount of volume to be effective, and at some point, his shot selection and efficiency are bound to be a tad erratic. If you could project him comfortably into a supporting role, it would be one thing, but he’s used to being a featured scorer and doesn’t have much of a complementary skill set yet. He’s a below-the-rim finisher and streaky three-point shooter. Thomas handled his workload well, and is talented enough to take the plunge in the first round, but his game is fundamentally one-dimensional, which gives some scouts pause. If he’s willing to adjust, he’ll broaden his opportunities for success in the NBA.
28. Greg Brown III, F, Texas | Freshman
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 16
Brown’s ridiculous athletic tools make him worth a shot in the late first round, but a disappointing year at Texas laid bare the fact that his feel is lagging behind many of his peers. He may be the best athlete in the draft, and the success of players in his mold like Jerami Grant and Derrick Jones—both of whom were late bloomers—leaves room for optimism. Brown plays hard, has shown the capacity to make outside shots, and was not helped whatsoever by the role he played at Texas, which often left him stranded in uncomfortable spots on the perimeter. But the hope that he might transition into a wing looks like a long shot. Teaming with better playmakers in the NBA should help unlock Brown as a lob threat and cutter, and if he shoots, there’s a chance he’ll eventually help a team. But at this rate, it may not be until his second contract, and whoever drafts him will need to be extremely patient.
29. Marcus Bagley, F, Arizona State | Freshman
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 215 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 19
Bagley has first-round type ability, but missed a large chunk of time with injury this season. He still projects as a Top 40 pick, with an opportunity to help himself during workouts and secure a spot in the first round. Arizona State’s team full of ball-needy scorers proved to be a fairly disastrous context for all involved, and Bagley has always been something of a gunner himself, but he brings NBA-caliber tools and a buyable jumper with range to the table. He’s not flashy, but has a chance to be a solid rotation player if all goes well, with enough scoring ability and defensive capability to hold his own. Bagley will have to get more comfortable sharing the ball, as passing has never been his forte and he’s unlikely to be leaned on as a volume scorer moving forward. But as a solid shooter and willing rebounder who can guard both forward spots, there’s a clear pathway for him to add value.
30. Sharife Cooper, PG, Auburn | Freshman
Height: 6′ 1″ | Weight: 180 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 22
Cooper’s 12-game college career has been polarizing for NBA scouts to parse. He has some distinct strengths: he’s extremely quick, puts pressure on the rim, and has terrific passing vision and can deliver the ball with either hand. But he’s listed quite generously at 6′ 1”, doesn’t add anything defensively, and struggles to shoot the ball from distance, providing little value without the ball in his hands. Realistically speaking, he profiles much more safely in a backup role than as a long-term NBA starter. Drafting Cooper early requires the belief that his playmaking contributions will cover adequately for the other things he’s likely to keep giving up. There’s enough upside in his playmaking skills for a team to roll the dice at a point in the draft—he got into the paint and drew fouls almost at will this season, but skeptics question whether that will translate against NBA length. His draft range is fairly wide right now, beginning around No. 20 and likely ending in the 30s.
31. Ayo Dosunmu, G, Illinois | Junior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 200 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: 40
As far as the NBA is concerned, Dosunmu is being judged on his body of work, not just Illinois’ unceremonious NCAA tournament exit. And he’s done enough that it’s likely he hears his name called in the first round, with his range likely beginning in the 20s and ending in the 30s. While Dosunmu is still somewhat stuck between guard spots—he’s probably not creative enough to play point guard in the NBA, and his jumper isn’t so dangerous that he’ll be a huge threat on the wing—his consistent effort and notable work ethic should help him inch toward reliability in spite of the things he doesn’t do as well. Physically, he fits the bill, and he’s become a strong finisher and much more consistent performer. Dosunmu lacks an elite skill and will have to keep improving his skill level to find a niche in the NBA long-term, but teams view him as someone who can give them minutes in the short-term, and as a good bet to keep improving.
32. Terrence Shannon Jr., G/F, Texas Tech | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 27
An athletic, slashing wing who plays hard on both ends and is unafraid to do the dirty work, Shannon profiles as the type of glue guy with upside a team should be eager to take a chance on. On the offensive end, Shannon hasn’t been quite as consistent as you’d hope, but he’s shown flashes of improved shooting and has consistently been good from the free throw line. He’s an admirably tough defender who’s willing to sacrifice his body, an underrated passer, and does a lot of things well that don’t manifest in the box score. Wings with Shannon’s type of physical profile tend to be appealing projects, and he brings a lot to the table in terms of intangibles. If he becomes a consistent shooter, there’s added upside here.
33. Brandon Boston Jr., SG, Kentucky | Freshman
Height: 6′ 7″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 25
Without rehashing the tumultuous nature of Kentucky’s season in full, Boston’s stock has cratered to the point where he’s now a potentially intriguing value play in the middle of the draft. His lack of physical strength made it difficult for him to impact games positively, hampering his ability to get to the rim and exacerbating his bad habits of settling for tough shots. Boston has always had the ability to make those shots and create space for himself off the dribble, but will have to work significantly on his body for that style of play to hold water in the NBA. The fact Boston never been much of a defender or playmaker casts added doubt on his chances of adjusting to a smaller role. And for a player whose ceiling was tied almost entirely to his ability to make tough shots, his inability to consistently make easy ones was pretty concerning. There’s still a chance Boston sneaks into the first round, but a lot of the shine has worn off here.
34. Daishen Nix, PG, G League Ignite
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 225 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 15
After starting the season projected as a first rounder, Nix was a mixed bag in the G League and has become a somewhat polarizing prospect. He’s a high-level NBA passer with terrific instincts and an unselfish, tough approach. But he also didn’t show up for the G League season in great shape, and some scouts are concerned with his ability to keep weight off his naturally broad frame. There’s an obvious throughline with his conditioning and his defensive performance. Nix also struggled to create his own shot and finish, and wasn’t much of a threat shooting threes, but in that case, it’s worth keeping in mind that the G League is replete with talented, experienced guards, and that Nix skipped the college level entirely. Better days are likely ahead, and based on what he showed in high school, there’s still reason for optimism. Nix may profile better as a quality backup than as a legit starter based on his athletic limitations but will be an interesting value play for a patient team.
35. Miles McBride, PG, West Virginia | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 2″ | Weight: 200 | Age 20 | Previous Rank: 51
McBride gradually won teams over this season with his consistency and moxie as a two-way catalyst for the Mountaineers. Although his size and limited halfcourt playmaking skills will likely pencil him into a somewhat narrow role in the NBA, he’s a tough, athletic defender with a reliable jumper, and can lean on a translatable midrange pull-up that should help cover for his struggles attacking the rim. Although his future is most likely as a bench piece, McBride is still young enough that there’s some room to grow offensively. He has some work to do to earn a spot in the late first round, but he’s a likely Top 40 selection who might be able to give a team passable spot minutes as a rookie.
36. David Johnson, G, Louisville | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 26
Louisville missing the NCAA tournament by a hair did no favors for Johnson’s standing as a prospect, which was already a tad unsteady. He didn’t have the breakout year some hoped for and struggled at times to adjust to more of a combo role alongside Carlik Jones. Johnson did take a significant step forward as a perimeter shooter, and he’s a good passer with NBA-caliber size and vision. The fit wasn’t ideal this season, but his struggles creating his own offense in the halfcourt and scoring in the paint have persisted. Johnson remains a potential Top 40 selection, but his range of the draft has become a bit guard-heavy, and he’ll have some work to do during the predraft process.
37. Justin Champagnie, F, Pittsburgh | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 200 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 24
Champagnie struggled a bit to end the season as defenses began keying on him heavily in conference play, but he was exceptionally productive at Pitt and has yet to turn 20. He’s an excellent rebounder on both ends, gets off the floor quickly, plays hard, and finds ways to produce without needing to be fed touches. There’s reason for optimism that he’ll be a viable floor spacer and potentially transition into more of a wing role in the NBA, which makes more sense at his size. Defensively, there’s some debate about how he fits, with some scouts viewing him as a switchable piece and others concerned about his lack of size. It may take a little creativity to maximize his output, but Champagnie could work as a versatile piece in smaller lineups.
38. Isaiah Todd, F, G League Ignite
Height: 6′ 10″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: NR
Todd joined G League Ignite with minimal expectations and put together a successful season as a legitimate contributor with the capacity to space the floor. Right now there’s not a whole lot else to his game, but Todd has size, he’s a solid jump shooter, and had some impressive moments. He’s always fancied himself as more of a perimeter player, which tends to come at the expense of extra rebounds. He still has a long way to go before helping an NBA team, and his limitations as a passer and ballhandler likely limit him to catch-and-shoot duty without a major step forward. But Todd does deserve some credit for making an impact with Ignite, and his tools and skill set give him a chance to fit in the NBA long-term.
39. Josh Christopher, SG, Arizona State | Freshman
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 215 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 30
Christopher more or less played to his reputation in his lone college season, piling up a few big games and showcasing a flashy skill set, but struggling heavily with shot selection and efficiency. He missed the final month of Arizona State’s season with a back injury. Dating back to high school, educated observers have always wondered how much his game accessorizes winning. That question still hangs over Christopher’s case as an NBA prospect—he’s always been able to score, but loves to take tough shots, and his teams sometimes pay the price. If he’s willing and able to adjust his habits, he has no shortage of ability. He’s a good athlete with a strong frame and creative handle, can be dangerous from all over the floor, and plays with an unyielding confidence, for better or worse. But Christopher is a long way from helping an NBA team win, and would likely benefit from G League minutes as part of his adjustment process.
40. Jose Alvarado, PG, Georgia Tech | Senior
Height: 6′ 0″ | Weight: 180 | Age: 23 | Previous rank: NR
Although he’s undersized and on the older side for an NBA prospect, Alvarado may be the best defensive guard in the draft, and is coming off an excellent senior year in which he led an overachieving Georgia Tech team to the NCAA tournament. He’s built an excellent case to be drafted, as an experienced, tough, savvy playmaker who may be able to give a team minutes immediately. Alvarado has exceptionally quick hands and is a complete pest guarding the ball. He’s also a quality leader with a real chance to help run a second unit. There’s a place in the NBA for smaller guards with a diverse array of strengths, and Alvarado is good enough to be the next one to break convention.
41. Ariel Hukporti, C, Nevezis (Germany)
Height: 7′ 0″ | Weight: 250 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 29
Statistically, Hukporti has had a bit of a messy season, with bouts of occasional wildness contributing to subpar shooting splits while adjusting to playing senior competition full time. Scouts have been frustrated by his inconsistencies but remain intrigued by his athleticism and tools, as Hukporti is massive, runs the floor well and is an excellent rebounder already. He looked like the best prospect at the 2020 Basketball Without Borders Global Camp, where he won MVP and left a strong impression playing front of numerous NBA decision-makers, but hasn’t quite built on that momentum in the way many hoped. He’ll be a long-term investment for whoever drafts him, and there is real upside here as a defender, screen-setter and rim-runner, but he’s still piecing a lot of things together.
42. Aaron Henry, G/F, Michigan State | Junior
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 50
Henry finished the year out on a hot streak and has broadened his appeal as a prospect, capably showcasing his improved playmaking skills and defensive chops on the perimeter. He’s starting to expand his game off the bounce, and has gradually developed into a solid all-around player, with streaky three-point shooting the primary hole in his skill set. Henry has shown enough capacity to hit jumpers that he’s not a lost cause, which makes him firmly draftable as an athletic, versatile wing. But teams view him primarily as a second-rounder, and he’ll likely need a strong predraft process to have a shot at the late first.
43. Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky | Junior
Height: 6′ 10″ | Weight: 235 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 44
Bassey made an impressive return from a serious knee injury this season and put himself squarely back on the draft map, but remains a bit polarizing depending on what you value in a center. Bassey’s huge frame, rebounding and shot-blocking skills figure to earn him a shot at a bench role, and while not exceptionally skilled, he’s good around the rim and has some shooting ability. For the most part, he dominated lesser competition in Conference USA, but has shown a strong motor and a clear level of competitive engagement. It wouldn’t be shocking to see Bassey emerge as as viable backup big, but he may not be special enough to justify a first-round investment, considering the replaceability of rim-running centers. If he can become a consistent floor spacer, which isn’t out of the question, it greatly helps his chances.
44. Filip Petrusev, C, Mega Bemax (Serbia)
Height: 6′ 11″ | Weight: 235 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: NR
Leaving Gonzaga to play professionally in his native Serbia paid off for Petrusev, who’s played his way into draftability, and crucially added a reliable three-point shot. He’s still pretty slender and somewhat limited offensively, but he’s been extremely productive and efficient scoring the ball and has the basic stretch-five skill set that NBA teams are often willing to gamble on. Petrusev isn’t a prolific rebounder or shot-blocker, and some of the questions that followed him in college remain, but he’s had a stellar season and will get a hard look, whether or not he comes over next season.
45. RaiQuan Gray, F, Florida State | Junior
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 260 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: NR
Gray’s unusual blend of guard skills and body type make him an intriguing second-round play, and he managed to help himself a bit in the second half of the season with more consistent production. He handles the ball well and was tasked with some occasional playmaking duties at Florida State, with the strength and size to beat smaller defenders into the paint and create mismatches. Defensively, he can hold his own. Gray isn’t a good three-point shooter, but the addition of a reliable jumper could be a game-changer for his long-term future. He’s an intriguing option later in the draft and has some role player potential.
46. Johnny Juzang, SG, UCLA | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 200 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
Juzang shot the lights out in the NCAA tournament and helped lift UCLA to a stunning Final Four run, nearly taking down Gonzaga in the process. It was enough to get him firmly on the NBA radar, but he has more work to do to solidify himself as a Top 40 selection. Juzang has obvious ability as a scorer, capable of hitting tough shots and comfortable scoring in the midrange or launching threes. If that develops into an elite skill, he could have a long-term NBA future, but he’s a bit of a one-note player right now: he doesn’t put pressure on the rim consistently, isn’t a great defender or playmaker, and profiles strictly as a specialist for the time being. Juzang is an intriguing second-round bet with upside, but will need strong workouts to rise from here.
47. Jaime Jaquez, G/F, UCLA | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
The other catalyst behind UCLA’s tourney run was Jaquez, who’s begun to showcase his full range of skills. He’s exhibited terrific basketball IQ and competitive mettle on both ends, but relies more on craftiness as a scorer to cover for what he lacks athletically. Jaquez is sneakily pretty good playing off the bounce, and has nice size and deceptive quickness getting into the paint. Scouts still have questions about what caliber jump shooter he’ll be long-term, and he lacks a truly elite skill. But the entire package here could be enough to turn him into a viable bench player.
48. Max Abmas, G, Oral Roberts | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 1” | Weight: 165 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
On the heels of a prolific season in the Summit League, Abmas was a breakout star of March, helping 15 seed Oral Roberts take down Ohio State, Florida, and nearly Arkansas. His statistical profile stood out entering the tourney, and while he’s still something of a curiosity, his deep shooting range, confidence, and scoring chops shone through on a meaningful stage. He lacks size, which will hurt him defensively, and needs to prove himself more as a passer. NBA teams feel like they need to see more, but he has a decent chance at the second round as things stand. Abmas has a fascinating decision to make: ride the hype into a guaranteed deal, or return to college and make a stronger case for a first round selection. His predraft process should be intriguing to follow.
49. Ochai Agbaji, SG, Kansas | Junior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: 45
There’s nothing flashy about Agbaji’s game, but he’s been a steady performer and has the tools to be a viable extra bench wing long-term. He’s tough and physical, can defend bigger wings and smaller guards with his length, and has improved as a three-point shooter each year. Agbaji isn’t a creative player, but has a good understanding of his own strengths and was an indispensable piece of the Jayhawks’ lineup the last two years. Players in his mold are often useful to have around, and while he’s not likely to be more than a fourth or fifth option on offense, Agbaji has an underrated skill set that should fit well on most rosters as a bench option.
50. Joshua Primo, G, Alabama | Freshman
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 190 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: NR
Primo was a person of interest for the NBA all season and showed fairly well for a true 18 year old after moving into Alabama’s starting five in late December. An injury kept him out of the majority of the Tide’s SEC tournament games and limited his impact to end the year, and as things stand he’ll have a better chance at a prime draft slot in 2022. That being said, he’s a quality shooter and decision-maker with more creative capacity than he was able to show this season, and he’d be an interesting project for an NBA team to take on right now. At this stage, it feels more likely he’ll return to college and try next year, but a strong predraft process might force the issue.
51. Juhann Begarin, SG, Paris Basket (France)
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 18 | Previous rank: 36
From an athletic standpoint, Begarin has pretty much everything you look for, but he’s an extremely raw talent who continues to have ups and downs at a relatively low level in France’s Pro B. His physical tools and improving skill level make him a fascinating long-term prospect: he can play above the rim, has great open-floor speed and has major defensive potential with his length and lateral agility. But his handle and jump shot are works in progress, and he hasn’t figured out how to be efficient at this point in time. He’s still extremely young, but his feel for the game isn’t well-developed. For now, Begarin is a viable second-round flier who should have added appeal if he’s willing to remain overseas another year or two.
52. Kessler Edwards, F, Pepperdine | Junior
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 200 | Age: 21 | Previous Rank: NR
Edwards brings NBA intrigue as a big, versatile forward with a good feel for his role away from the ball. He’s a capable shooter, relocates well, and rarely forces bad shots. Also a solid team defender with length and decent footwork, Edwards profiles as a potential rotation piece with a skill set that fits neatly alongside ball-dominant teammates. He’s not incredibly physical or explosive, and most of his looks have to be created for him, meaning he’s a likely fourth or fifth offensive option who can space the floor from the wings and corners. If he defends well enough to stay on the floor, it should be enough for him to add value. While Edwards isn’t a lock to be drafted, he’ll have a legitimate shot to make a roster either this year or next.
53. E. J. Liddell, F, Ohio State | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 7″ | Weight: 240 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
While Liddell didn’t do quite enough to put himself squarely on the minds of NBA teams this season, he played a huge role in Ohio State’s success while playing mostly out of position as an undersized center. He proved to be a tough, versatile centerpiece for the Buckeyes, capable of stepping out to hit jumpers, blocking shots, and bodying up bigger players. Liddell is a good athlete for a bigger-bodied forward and projects as a viable small-ball four long-term. Right now, he lacks an elite skill, and it may behoove him to return to college and play his way closer to next year’s first round. But optimistically, Liddell fits a mold in which players like Eric Paschall have had success recently.
54. Isaiah Livers, F, Michigan | Senior
Height: 6′ 7″ | Weight: 230 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: 43
It was unfortunate to see Livers’ Michigan career cut short by a foot injury in the Big Ten Tournament, but he remains an intriguing potential role player on the strength of his jumper. Livers strung together three straight years of 40-plus percent three-point shooting at Michigan, and profiles as a high-level floor spacer with decent size. He won’t create much offense for himself or others, but he’s going to make shots and limit mistakes with the ball, and is a solid rebounder for his position. Livers is not a great athlete, but continuing to sharpen his current skill set could be enough for him to stick as a bench piece.
55. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, F/C, Villanova | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 230 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 45
Robinson-Earl has always leaned on a diverse array of skills to be effective, and proved to be a gifted rebounder and passer for his position during his time in college. But the question is to what extent everything translates, as he’s not a great athlete or consistent jump shooter, has average tools and doesn’t offer much in the way of rim protection. He certainly deserves to be drafted, and has found ways to make an impact in spite of his shortcomings to this point. But he’s the type of complementary piece who’s only going to be as effective as the players around him, and will benefit from going to a team that can maximize him in a halfcourt system, and alongside other quality passers. He’ll get a look in the NBA, and could be an exceptional player overseas in the long run if things don’t pan out.
56. Luka Garza, C, Iowa | Senior
Height: 6′ 11″ | Weight: 265 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: 46
Garza was the most dominant offensive player in college basketball the past two seasons, but his limited mobility and athleticism will make his pathway to the pros a narrow, tricky one. He’s certainly worth a draft pick as a potential backup big, given how effectively he scores in the paint, rebounds and knocks down threes. But Garza is heavy-footed and likely to struggle defending in space. Whether he succeeds in the NBA hinges strongly on team fit, but he should be an attractive pick for teams who value skilled bigs and can cover for him schematically. There’s a chance Garza turns himself into an effective specialist. He’ll be a sought-after player in Europe if it doesn’t work out.
57. Herbert Jones, F, Alabama | Senior
Height: 6′ 8″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 22 | Previous Rank: 60
Jones’ progression at Alabama was admirable, and he’s fashioned himself into a versatile, tough player who supplies energy on both ends of the floor. He’s a switchable defender who can make plays on the ball with his length, and has the size to potentially cover four positions. While Jones is unlikely to be more than a fifth option on offense, he’s a capable ballhandler and passer with decent feel. As an improved, but still below-average jump shooter, his upside is a bit limited, and scoring has never been his calling card. But he’ll get a chance to prove himself and find a niche, and does enough things at a high level to pan out as a back-end rotation piece if he starts to make shots.
58. Sandro Mamukelashvili, F/C, Seton Hall | Senior
Height: 6’11” | Weight | 240 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: 58
An unusual but effective college player, Mamulekashvili brings a degree of versatility as a big who can pass, handle and shoot threes, and has built an interesting, if not wholly convincing case in the second round. He’s not a great athlete, but combines enough physicality and skill to have an outside shot at an NBA bench spot. He’ll be better suited for the four than the five due to his defensive shortcomings, and is skilled enough to float to the perimeter and add some value. Mamulekashvili should warrant a hard look from teams as an extra bench big.
59. Austin Reaves, G, Oklahoma | Senior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: NR
Reaves helped himself in a major way this season, emerging as the best player on a solid Oklahoma team, and giving Gonzaga 27 points in the NCAA tournament to end on a strong personal note. He’s turned himself into a viable combo guard, having showcased playmaking chops in ball screens and strong basketball IQ. Reaves’ frame is a bit slight and he’s not a terrific athlete, but he plays with toughness and has good size for his position. While his three-point shooting fell off a cliff at Oklahoma, he was a standout spot-up shooter in his first two college seasons at Wichita State, and his free throw percentages have remained strong. In a smaller role, Reaves should be able to efficiently space the floor and occasionally playmake, giving him a pathway to an eventual bench spot if things break correctly.
60. Matthew Mayer, F, Baylor | Junior
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 225 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: NR
The sell with Mayer is predicated on his sporadic flashes of high-level scoring ability off the bench at Baylor. Consistency hasn’t been his forte, but he’s got great size, can create his own shot and knock down jumpers on the wing, and does have long-term NBA intrigue. Mayer isn’t an innately physical or defensive-minded player, and doesn’t do much in the way of playmaking either at this point, and he’s a little too one-dimensional to be firmly draftable right now. He has the type of ability to ultimately make the predraft process work for him and play his way into the draft, but he’d also likely benefit from going back to school and expanding his skills with a larger diet of offensive touches.
61. Joe Wieskamp, SG, Iowa | Junior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: NR
After making 46% of his threes on solid volume, Wieskamp has made a good case for himself as a potential specialist, with a proven jumper and viable off-ball skill set. He’s limited as a creator and won’t be much of a threat to attack off the dribble, but he’s an experienced decision-maker and picks his spots effectively. Wieskamp will be pressed a bit defensively, where he was never exceptionally impactful at Iowa and struggles to contain quicker guards off the dribble. But there’s a potentially elite skill here and enough complementary stuff that he’ll wind up on a roster next season, whether or not he’s drafted.
62. Mojave King, G/F, Cairns Taipans (Australia)
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 195 | Age: 18 | Previous Rank: NR
King has underwhelmed relative to preseason expectations but remains an intriguing long-term prospect even with his struggles adjusting to the NBL. He boasts a strong athletic profile, but the game is still slowing down for him and his ball skills and jumper are still developing. A product of the NBA’s Global Academy program, where he teamed with countryman Josh Giddey, King was viewed by some scouts as the more intriguing long-term prospect of the two entering the season, pointing to the quality of his tools. That perception has shifted, but King should have a chance at the first round next year with continued growth. If he opts to stay in this draft, he’s looking at a second-round selection at best, but he remains an interesting long-term play on the wing.
63. Neemias Queta, C, Utah State | Junior
Height: 7’ 0” | Weight: 245 | Age: 21 | Previous Rank: NR
Queta made the most of a fully healthy season and emerged as one of the best rim protectors in college basketball, leading Utah State back to the NCAA tournament as the backbone of a quality defense. While the relative mystery that accompanied him as a prospect two years ago is gone, his sheer size and length, coupled with shot-blocking chops and underrated passing skills, give him a chance to eventually be a backup center if he continues to improve. Queta is a bit stiff physically, and his history of knee issues is a data point as far as his long-term mobility is concerned. He remains set to become the NBA’s first Portuguese player, and has a legit shot at being drafted at this stage.
64. Nah’shon Hyland, SG, VCU | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 3″ | Weight: 175 | Age: 20 | Previous Rank: NR
An unfortunate end to the season for VCU, which forfeited its first-round matchup in the NCAA tournament due to positive COVID-19 cases, meant a missed opportunity for Hyland to prove himself on a big platform. He was on the NBA’s radar all season, with deep shooting range, impressive confidence, and ability to make tough shots off the bounce. He managed to be pretty efficient this season despite those tendencies, but apart from that skill, his overall game leaves something to be desired. Hyland doesn’t make many plays for teammates, nor does he project as a good defender, making him more of a G League project and developmental investment than someone who will help an NBA team in the near future.
65. Jason Preston, PG, Ohio | Junior
Height: 6′ 4″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 21 | Previous Rank: NR
Preston enters the draft with consecutive high-quality college seasons under his belt, and became more of a name brand this year in leading Ohio to a win in the NCAA tournament. He’s an excellent passer and good athlete with NBA-caliber vision, but will likely need a strong year in the G League as a stepping stone to a potential career in the league. Preston struggles to create offense for himself at times — it’s no small feat that he can pass teammates open in the halfcourt, but he’s not the type of scorer who will take over games as a professional. With his size, pace, and legit playmaking chops, Preston is an intriguing sleeper who deserves a long look.
66. D.J. Steward, G, Duke | Freshman
Height: 6′ 3″ | Weight: 165 | Age: 19 | Previous Rank: NR
Steward surprised some teams with his decision to enter the draft and turn pro immediately, following a decent freshman season on an underwhelming Duke team. He did enough to have a shot at being drafted, but will most likely end up on two-way contract whether or not he hears his name called. Steward is a scoring guard with innate creativity playing off the dribble and has made strides with his three-point shooting over the years, but remains a bit undersized to play as an NBA two-guard and lacks the playmaking chops to run the point. A hard worker with strong intangibles, Steward will be a worthwhile development player who will benefit from G League experience. He’ll need to showcase his skills effectively in the predraft process to secure a spot in the second round.
67. David Duke Jr., G, Providence | Junior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 200 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: 53
Duke passes the eye test as a tall, pass-first point guard, but struggled to score efficiently this season and is in the second round mix based on his size and playmaking skills. Duke is a capable passer and at his best in transition, but struggles to score and make plays in the halfcourt. He converted less than half his rim attempts on the season, per Barttorvik.com data, and shot just 38% on twos overall. Sporadic turnover issues were partially a byproduct of usage, but he’s something short of a full-time point guard and not quite refined enough to play off the ball. He profiles best as a two-way contract candidate, but will have a chance to hear his name called on draft night.
68. Ron Harper Jr., F, Rutgers | Junior
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 245 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 48
Though Harper generated some NBA buzz early in the season, his production dovetailed toward the end of the season and ultimately didn’t help his chances of being drafted. But his NBA genetics, strong feel for the game, and major role in the turnaround of Rutgers’ program put him on the map. Harper may benefit from staying in school and working on his frame and jump shot, but if he turns pro will likely have interest as a two-way contract candidate. Optimistic scouts are eager to see what Harper can do if he’s able to work himself into better shape. He’s an intelligent passer, streaky but capable shooter, and a potential bench piece if things break correctly.
69. Oscar da Silva, F, Stanford | Senior
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 230 | Age: 22 | Previous rank: NR
While da Silva never really got national credit as one of the better players in college basketball, he was terrific for Stanford for the better part of this season as a uniquely effective, unflashy offensive anchor. The German-born forward is a terrific passer and versatile player who was deployed all over the floor in college, and developed into a productive finisher and the centerpiece of his team. The primary issue has long been da Silva’s reticence (and average results) to become a three-point shooter, but he’s a decent foul shooter, and developing a jumper will be an essential skill for him in the pros. He struggles to play against length at times, but da Silva is a smart interior player who adds value on both ends of the floor. He’s an interesting undrafted flier.
70. Trey Murphy, F, Virginia | Junior
Height: 6′ 9″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
Although the volume was notably low, Murphy’s remarkable shooting splits after transferring to Virginia have put him on the radar as an NBA prospect. He’s proven to be a consistent set shooter and floor-spacing threat, and has nice positional size for that role. The issue here is that his offensive game is otherwise quite limited, as he lacks creative instincts and struggles to play off the dribble. He’s a decent athlete, but not an especially agile defender, and defensively may wind up a bit stuck between forward spots. If Murphy stays in the draft, he’ll warrant a flier based on his jump shot, but he’ll need to refine that into an elite skill to stick as a specialist. His upside beyond that is somewhat limited.
71. Rokas Jokubaitis, PG, Zalgiris (Lithuania)
Height: 6′ 4″ | Weight: 195 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: 55
Jokubaitis’ long-term future may lie in Europe, but he’s a solid, well-tested young playmaker who will have some appeal as a draft-and-stash pick. He profiles as an NBA backup at best due to his athletic limitations, but he’s got good size and craftiness and has benefitted from regular playing time in Euroleague this season. His individual scoring is a work in progress, but he’s a decent shooter and has been a fixture for Lithuania at junior levels. He’ll be an option for teams in the second round.
72. Darius Days, F, LSU | Junior
Height: 6′ 7″ | Weight: 245 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: NR
Days is an intriguing sleeper for the small ball era, with a near 7-foot wingpan, relentless motor, and quickness getting off the floor. He’s a terrific rebounder at his size, but his offensive impact is predicated on winning those opportunities off the glass and teammates feeding him. Days took a big step forward as a shooter this season, making 40% of attempts on decent volume, and if that proves to be real, there’s an outside chance he can fill a P.J. Tucker type role in the NBA. Due to size and skill constraints, his offensive role may be a bit limited, but there’s a place for undersized, athletic bigs in the NBA right now, and Days falls in line with that trend.
73. Quentin Grimes, SG, Houston | Junior
Height: 6′ 5″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
Grimes successfully reinvented himself at Houston the past two seasons after a disappointing year at Kansas, and looks primed for an opportunity on a two-way deal. While he doesn’t jump off the page athletically, Grimes has a strong frame, has proven he can knock down shots, and puts in solid effort defensively. He struggles to attack the paint and put pressure on the rim, and isn’t likely to be much of a creator off the dribble, profiling as more of a 3-and-D bench player in the long run, but he was immensely valuable this season and brings strong intangibles to the table, as well. He’ll have a chance to keep proving himself, and should work his way onto a roster next season one way or another.
74. Julian Champagnie, F, St. John’s | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 8” | Weight: 220 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: 56
While Champagnie isn’t quite as accomplished a prospect as twin brother Justin, he had a strong sophomore season and should get real looks on a two-way deal. Champagnie is a versatile forward and capable floor-spacer with solid feel, and has proven himself a useful defender, as well. His lack of creative acumen narrows the potential for a perimeter role somewhat, but he’s trending in a good direction and may ultimately benefit from returning to college. But as a potential wing defender and extra shooter, there’s a path for him to succeed.
75. Santiago Aldama, F, Loyola (MD) | Sophomore
Height: 6′ 11″ | Weight: 215 | Age: 20 | Previous rank: NR
There’s been some moderate buzz surrounding Aldama, who was a solid but relatively unheralded international prospect, wound up playing in the Patriot League, and showcased a strong skill level as a passer and scorer at his size. However, the NBA remains pretty lukewarm on his long-term prospects, as he’s not a great athlete or a consistent jump shooter, and as things stand will likely struggle heavily with physicality in the pros. He does some interesting things and thinks the game at a high level, but the context here deserves some skepticism. The level of competition Aldama faced was pretty poor this season, and it may take some creative work for him to get drafted — but if he can be stashed overseas, it’ll help his chances.
76. J.T. Thor, F, Auburn | Freshman
Height: 6′ 10″ | Weight: 205 | Age: 19 | Previous rank: NR
Thor is an impressive athlete with some theoretical versatility as a long, agile defender with basic jump shooting skills. Right now, that only really manifests itself in brief flashes, but players with his type of tools are rare, and he’d be a worthy end-of-roster project at the moment. Thor is pretty far off from helping an NBA team and lagging behind in terms of feel—his shot selection leaves something to be desired, and he can fall a bit too in love with his jump shot—but there’s enough to work with here that a team might take a chance. Returning to Auburn might be prudent, however.
77. Yves Pons, F, Tennessee | Senior
Height: 6′ 6″ | Weight: 215 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: 56
After four seasons, everyone knows what to expect from Pons: he’s an incredibly strong and explosive athlete who has never developed NBA-caliber ball skills. His tools are so high-caliber that there’s a pathway for him to make the league purely as a defensive specialist, with the length and foot speed to defend powerful opposing wings and hound them around the floor. Pons legitimately plays above the rim, and could be an asset on that end in small lineups. But the upside here is limited, and mostly tied to how many jumpers he makes—Pons made progress as a shooter at Tennessee, but opposing teams will be comfortable letting him launch for the foreseeable future. His offense will have to be created for him, and he’s strictly a play finisher. Pons should be worth a look as an end-of-roster project, where a team can try and fashion his unique strengths into a viable role.
78. Kofi Cockburn, C, Illinois | Sophomore
Height: 7′ 0″ | Weight: 290 | Age: 21 | Previous rank: NR
Cockburn became a dominant force in the Big Ten this season, using his massive frame to punish defenders in the paint and playing a major role in Illinois’ success. His style of play is dated by NBA standards, and further hampered by the fact he doesn’t shoot threes or pass the ball well. But guys with his sheer size tend to get longer looks as situational players, and while he may not get drafted, Cockburn will likely find his way onto a roster. If he can trim down a bit and improve his mobility, his ability as a rebounder and finisher could play up off someone’s bench.
79. MaCio Teague, SG, Baylor | Senior
Height: 6′ 4″ | Weight: 195 | Age: 23 | Previous rank: NR
Teague played a huge role in Baylor’s success this season and is universally lauded for his maniacal work ethic. He’ll turn 24 prior to draft night and has funky shooting mechanics, but he remains an intriguing sleeper based on his feel and intangibles and a potential two-way contract candidate. Teague’s extremely long wingspan will help him defensively, and while he’s not especially creative, he has a good sense of shot selection and what his own limits are. He’ll be comfortable fitting in, and will probably do whatever it takes to make a roster. There’s enough ability here for Teague to punch above his weight, in theory.
80. Carlik Jones, G, Louisville | Senior
Height: 6′ 1″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 23 | Previous rank: 57
Tough, crafty and experienced, Jones is one of the better fringe point guard options, despite his occasional struggles on a Louisville team that underachieved. He’s a capable scorer and playmaker with a slightly unorthodox style, relying more on his craftiness, length and ability to draw fouls in the paint, and using his jumper to keep people honest. He’s also a stellar rebounder for his size and strong decision-maker with the ball who rarely turns it over. Jones’ inconsistent three-point shooting and struggles to score in the paint will be holdups for teams, and his efficiency dipped moving up to the ACC from the Big South, where he had a great career at Radford. He has an outside shot at eventually cracking the back end of an NBA roster, and should be a quality G League player next season to start.
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