2021 NBA Mock Draft
By: Zach Blaine
The NBA Draft is one the most exciting times of the year and also the most unpredictable. Year after year, young men see their dreams come true as they finally have a chance to compete at the highest level. Drafting these 18 year-old guys is a shot in the dark for most teams as you never truly know how a prospect will pan out. This year’s draft features a handful of blue chip prospects that have the opportunity to transcend a franchise. Headlined by Cade Cunningham and Evan Mobley, the class of 2021 has an unusual amount of depth throughout the entire lottery.
The Draft is set for Thursday, June 29th while the NBA Summer League will begin August 8th, which gives everyone their first glance at the rookie class. This figures to be a fun night for NBA fans and players alike.
Let’s take a look at where some of these prospects could end up…
- Cade goes first
Cade Cunningham is the favorite to be the first overall pick. His pace is unique for his age and he has incredible scoring and playmaking ability. A 6’9 point guard doesn’t come around too often.
- The Rockets get their franchise scorer
Jalen Green going to the Rockets makes sense as Houston is looking for their next go-to scorer. Insane athletic ability, solid decision making and maybe the most upside in the draft, Green to the Rockets would be a great selection at number 2 overall.
- The Cavs pair Garland with a pick-and-roll buddy
Evan Mobley as the big man of the future should be a dream come true for Cavs fans. Could be considered as a steal at 3rd overall, Mobley has the ability to impact the games on both sides of the floor. Being able to put the ball on the floor and shoot a little bit, the skillset of Mobley is extremely advanced for a 7-footer.
- Toronto replaces Lowry
Jalen Suggs has the potential to be the point guard of the Raptors for the next decade. With the recent hiring of Earl Watson, Suggs could thrive under his coaching and excel some of his skills that aren’t as refined. The playmaking and constant bursts of athleticism are a few of the things that make Suggs so highly regarded.
5. The Magic nab Kuminga
The draft will begin at this pick as everything after this is a little up in the air. The Magic selecting Jonathan Kuminga here makes sense as they add a new school big to their young core. The Magic could use a little bit of everything and Kuminga could be a nice replacement for Aaron Gordon.
- Presti does it again, selects Bouknight
The Thunder are in a nice spot here as they could go a couple different ways. Sam Presti has been known in the past to reach a little bit whether that be with Russell Westbrook, James Harden or even Steven Adams. The Thunder selecting James Bouknight here makes sense as they need a scoring guard to play alongside Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Bouknight has some of the highest upside in the draft.
- Warriors add guard depth with Mitchell
This mock draft is assuming all teams keep their pick as the Warriors selections have a high chance of being moved to another team. If they keep it, selecting Davion Mitchell would be a great pick as he could find his niche behind the Splash Brothers, Steph Curry and Klay THompson, as he will defend at a high level and also score and make plays.
- Magic get best available in Barnes
Scottie Barnes might be gone by the time this pick comes around but if he is available the Magic will be thrilled. Barnes can do it all and his stock has been rising as of late. A little bit of a tweener, Barnes plays hard enough to cover some of his flaws.
- Kings replace Buddy? Create nice guard trio with Moses Moody addition
The Kings are in an interesting spot here as they need a big man but at the 9th spot, big men are a little bit of a reach. Selecting the 6’6 combo guard, Moses Moody, would give them a multitude of guard lineups that could keep the defense of their heels. De’Aaron Fox, Tyrese Haliburton and Moses Moody could be fun to watch in Sacramento.
- Pelicans add a sniper in Kispert
The perfect fit for the Pelicans at 10 would be Gonzaga’s, Corey Kispert. The Pelicans need help spacing the floor for Zion Williamson and Kispert is the best shooter in the draft. If he develops a wider offensive arsenal, look out.
- Hornets rely on talent of Jalen Johnson
The Hornets are in a tricky spot here as Corey Kispert would also fit well for them. If he is gone, Jalen Johnson could be the name that gets called. His Duke season ended early as a result of Covid-19, but his offensive arsenal is advanced and he can also defend at the next level. Johnson might have been taken higher had he finished his season with the Blue Devils.
- Spurs get one of the best athletes in Keon Johnson
The Spurs have had a lot of recent success in the past few drafts and look for that to continue with this selection. Tennessee’s Keon Johnson is one of the best athletes in the draft and is a raw prospect. The point guard showed flashes throughout the season and with the right coaching, Johnson could take-off.
13. Pacers like versatility of Franz Wagner
Franz Wagner led his Michigan squad to a Number 1 overall seed in the tournament and did so by dominating both ends of the floor. With great size for his position, Wagner could be a prolific 3-and-D guy if all goes well. Although he was seen to get pushed off his path to the hoop rather easily, Wagner could build muscle and outplay his ADP.
- Warriors look for a gem – select hybrid player Ziaire Williams
Finishing out the lottery is the Warriors once again. The Warriors will look for the highest ranked on their board and that could be Williams from Stanford. A Brandon Ingram-type player, Ziaire has many aspects to his game. A great passer, strong finisher and capable shooter, Williams could excel in the Bay Area.