By: Jeff Leong
Here are who I think teams should select based on skill set and how they will fit in with the team. Let's get right into some of the bold predictions I have for the 2018 NBA Draft.
1 Phoenix Suns DEANDRE AYTON 7'1" 260 19 C Arizona Fr.
Elite physical tools. Offensively skilled around the rim. Rebounding machine. Active shot blocker. Phoenix is in need of a dominant presences in the paint on both ends of the floor.
2 Sacramento Kings LUKA DONCIC 6'8" 230 19 SG/SF Slovenia Intl.
Supreme confidence. Proven clutch ability. At his best when able to play make as the point forward. Won MVP of EuroLeague at age 19. Will bring offensive versatility to Sacramento.
3 Atlanta Hawks MOHAMED BAMBA 7'1" 225 19 C Texas Fr.
7'10" wingspan will bring immediate defensive versatility. He has changed his shooting mechanics over the offseason as well as extending his shooting range to the 3 point line. Highest ceiling player in this draft.
4 Memphis Grizzlies MARVIN BAGLEY 6'11" 235 19 PF Duke Fr.
Prototype PF in today's NBA. Bouncy player. Polished offensive player with ability to score from all three levels. Moves well in transition for a big man. Will give Memphis an immediate starter and contributor on the offensive side.
5 Dallas Mavericks JAREN JACKSON JR. 6'11" 235 18 PF/C Michigan St. Fr.
Brings a lot of length on the defensive end. Ability to pick and pop at the big man position. Has a lot of athleticism to finish at the rim. Can improve on his touch around the rim. Best player available to this point.
6 Orlando Magic COLLIN SEXTON 6'2" 185 19 PG Alabama Fr.
Athletic and explosive playmaker. Ready to become the leader of a team. Orlando is desperate for a franchise PG. His energy will be contagious to his teammates. High motor. Plays with a fierceness. Ultra competitor. Focused individual. One of the hardest workers in the draft.
7 Chicago Bulls MIKAL BRIDGES 6'7" 210 21 SG/SF Villanova Jr.
Purest shooter in the draft. High IQ. Athletic wing. Team player. Experienced winner. Chicago placed in the bottom 10 of 3 point shooting % last season and will look to address that void in this year's draft.
8 Cleveland Cavaliers TRAE YOUNG 6'2" 180 19 PG Oklahoma Fr.
Limitless shooting range. Thrives in transition. Understands how to control the tempo throughout a game. Great court vision with ability to create for his teammates. His elite offensive skills will be effective with or without LeBron.
9 New York Knicks MICHAEL PORTER 6'11" 210 19 SF Missouri Fr.
The wildcard of this year's draft. Not enough high level game tape. Above average ball skills at his height. Capable shooter and ability to create his own shot. Not the fastest but moves well for his size. Knicks looking for a homerun with the 9th overall pick.
10 Philadelphia 76ers MILES BRIDGES 6'6" 220 20 SF/PF Michigan St. So.
Highlight reel above the rim. Athletic wing. Has improved on consistency of his jumper. Ability to score at all levels. Ability to guard multiple positions. Will give the 76ers more physicality on the defensive end.
11 Charlotte Hornets KEVIN KNOX 6'9" 215 18 SF/PF Kentucky Fr.
Lengthy athletic wing. All around game. 2 way player. Calm and even-keeled. Not afraid of the big moments. Only 18 years old and showed his development throughout a season.
12 Los Angeles Clippers SHAI GILGEOUS-ALEXANDER 6'6" 180 19 PG Kentucky Fr.
Long-armed point guard with great size. Will make an impact on the defensive end. Strongest when attacking the rim. Understands how to draw defenders and create opportunities for teammates. Clippers can get their future starting PG.
13 Los Angeles Clippers WENDELL CARTER 6'10" 250 19 PF/C Duke Fr.
Under utilized in college. Has offensive upside. Can finish strong at the rim. Ability to read defenses out of the post and kick out to open shooters. Active on the glass. Will provide Clippers with more scoring options in the paint.
14 Denver Nuggets LONNIE WALKER IV 6'5" 195 19 SG Miami Fr.
Untapped potential. Elite athleticism. Streaky shooter. Microwave scorer. Crafty finishing ability around the rim. High scoring upside as a starting shooting guard.
15 Washington Wizards ROBERT WILLIAMS 6'9" 240 20 PF/C Texas A&M So.
Above the rim player. Rim runner in transition. Athletic big. Not a natural shooter. John Wall can use an athletic running mate for lobs at the center position, an element they don't have.
16 Phoenix Suns AARON HOLIDAY 6'1" 185 21 PG UCLA Jr.
Polished offensive game. Seasoned player. High volume, streaky shooter. NBA ready scorer. Will be able to run the second unit for Phoenix and give them immediate scoring off the bench.
17 Milwaukee Bucks DONTE DIVINCENZO 6'5" 200 21 SG Villanova So.
Plays with a swagger. Efficient 3 point shooter. Ability to create own shot or catch and shoot. Sneaky athleticism. High IQ player. Makes winning plays. The Bucks are ready to surround Giannis with complementary talents.
18 San Antonio Spurs OMARI SPELLMAN 6'9" 255 20 PF/C Villanova Fr.
Draymond Green-esque build and style of play. The new breed of play-making power forwards. Defensive versatility. Can space the floor as well as bang in the paint. Quick decision maker. Would fit in well with the Spurs system.
19 Atlanta Hawks KEITA BATES-DIOP 6'8" 225 22 SF/PF Ohio State Jr.
Tough shot maker. 3 and D player. Big Ten Player of the Year. Will be able to contribute as a role player right away. Will add much needed depth and versatility for the Hawks.
20 Minnesota Timberwolves JEVON CARTER 6'1" 195 22 PG West Virginia Sr.
Hands down the toughest player in the draft. High motor, high energy, max effort player. Rugged style of play. Type of player Tom Thibodeau embraces. Won't back down from any challenge. Defensive intensity is his calling card.
21 Utah Jazz KEVIN HUERTER 6'7" 195 19 SG Maryland So.
3 point sharp shooter. Fundamentally sound. Understands off the ball spacing. Runs off screens well. Enough athleticism to compete on the defensive end. Will add length at the guard position for the Jazz.
22 Chicago Bulls SVIATOSLAV MYKHAILIUK 6'8" 210 20 SG Kansas Sr.
More of a 3 point shooter than mid range. Ability to pull up or catch and shoot. Can handle the ball well enough. Chicago will look to continue adding 3 point shooting to the roster.
23 Indiana Pacers TROY BROWN 6'7" 210 18 SG Oregon Fr.
Capable of being a point forward. Understands how to play make for teammates. 3 and D type player. Position-less basketball type player will fit right in with Indiana.
24 Portland Trail Blazers BRANDON MCCOY 7'1" 250 19 C UNLV Fr.
The 7 footer being slept on in this draft. Finishes strong as well as having a soft touch around the rim. Ability to take mid range jumpers. Active shot blocker. Lateral mobility needs improvement. Portland has been lacking a consistent scorer in the paint.
25 Los Angeles Lakers GARY TRENT JR. 6'5" 205 19 SG Duke Fr.
3 point specialist. Quick release. Great shooting form. Understands how to create separation. Has an NBA ready body. Will help the Lakers space the floor for Lonzo Ball to play make.
26 Philadelphia 76ers GRAYSON ALLEN 6'4" 200 22 SG Duke Sr.
Athletic play maker. High IQ. Plays with passion. Combo guard. Big shot maker. Crafty around the rim. Handles the ball well. Will add to the grittiness of Philadelphia.
27 Boston Celtics MORITZ WAGNER 6'11" 240 20 PF/C Michigan Jr.
Ideal stretch four in today's NBA. Plays with joy and intensity. High motor. Very agile and quick for his size. Above average dribble skills for a big man. Pick and Pop game. Fits the style of play Brad Stevens has implemented in Boston.
28 Golden State Warriors LANDRY SHAMET 6'5" 190 21 PG/SG Wichita State So.
Efficient shooter as a combo guard. Tough shot maker. Creates for teammates. Solid handles. Able to control tempo of the game. Wiry build. Brings length on the defensive end at the guard position. Will be groomed to eventually take on the Shaun Livingston role.
29 Brooklyn Nets JALEN BRUNSON 6'2" 200 21 PG Villanova Jr.
Poised and always under control. Floor general. Knows how to slow down the game. Cerebral player. Rarely forces bad shots. Consistently makes winning plays. Scrappy defensive player. Ultimate team player.
30 Atlanta Hawks JACOB EVANS 6'5" 200 21 SG/SF Cincinnati Jr.
Defensive hound. Aggressive on ball defender. High motor. Strong frame. Two way player. Athletic wing. Streaky shooter. Ability to create his own shot. Tough shot maker.