2016 NBA MOCK DRAFT (FIRST ROUND)

2016 NBA MOCK DRAFT (FIRST ROUND)

4TH EDITION

This is our 4th edition of our 2016 NBA Mock Draft. We will cover the entire first round. Each player has their own individual NBA Draft profile. Just click on their name (hyperlink) to access it. Also included is our opinion of why each pick is made. Here is our latest 2016 NBA Mock Draft.

 

#1. Philadelphia 76ers

Ben Simmons

6’10” 240 Pounds

PF LSU FreshmenPhiladelphia-76ers-Logo-Design

Why The Pick: Simmons is the best talent in this draft. While Brandon Ingram has been linked to the 76ers, we believe it is only speculation. Simmons is a wonderful talent. While he needs to improve his shooting he does everything else great. He should be an impact player from Day 1 and will be the face of the franchise. For a previous “Featured Article” on Ben Simmons click here.

 

#2. Los Angeles Lakers

Brandon Ingram

6’9″ 190 Pounds

SF DUKE  FreshmenLos-Angeles-Lakers-logo-design

Why the Pick: Ingram is the 2nd best player in this years draft. He is an elite scorer and will instantly make the Lakers better. His game is silky smooth. Once he adds weight and muscle to his frame, look out. Ingram will be competing for NBA scoring titles in a few years. He is an impact player.

 

#3. Boston Celtics

Dragan Bender

7’0″ 215 Pounds

PF  NO COLLEGE: Currently playing in Maccabi Tel Aviv (Israel) Boston-Celtics-logo-design

Why the Pick: We had Kris Dunn slotted in this spot in our previous mock draft. The more we see Bender play on film the more we like him. He is the 3rd most talented player, however he comes with risk. General Manager Danny Ainge will take the chance of finding the next Kristaps Porzingis. Boston isn’t far away from being an elite team in the Eastern Conference. Adding a talent like Bender will speed up that process.

 

#4. Phoenix Suns

Kris Dunn

6’4″ 220 Pounds

PG PROVIDENCE  JuniorPhoenix-Suns-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Dunn is the best point guard in the draft and a potential All-Star. Current Phoenix guards Eric Bledsoe and Brandin Knight are injury prone. Dunn’s overall talent is too good to pass up in this spot.

 

#5. Minnesota Timberwolves

Jamal Murray

6’4″ 210 Pounds

SG OKLAHOMA  SeniorMinnesota-Timberwolves-logo-design

Why the pick: Murray was sensational as a freshmen for Kentucky and is the best “combo” guard in the draft. He is the 2nd best shooter in the draft, right below Buddy Hield. Murray’s ability to handle the ball along with his ability to make plays for others gives him the nod over Hield in this spot. It is possible Murray goes as high as number 3 before all is said and done. 

 

#6. New Orleans Pelicans

Jaylen Brown

PELICANS

6’7″ 225 Pounds

SF CALIFORNIA  Freshman

Why the pick: Brown is one of the top athletes in the entire draft. He is raw, however he is oozing with potential. New Orleans needs to find help for All-Star Anthony Davis. While Brown will take time to adjust to the NBA, his upside is very high. He also has elite defensive potential.

 

#7. Denver Nuggets

Marquese Chriss

6’10”  235 Pounds

PF  Washington  FreshmenDenver-Nuggets-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Chriss is perhaps the fastest riser of any player in the draft. Once thought of as a late first rounder he is now considered a lock for the top 10. He is a “stretch 4” with excellent athletic ability. He can provide insurance for the potential loss of Kenneth Faried this off-season.

 

#8. Sacramento Kings

Buddy Hield

6’4″ 210 Pounds

SG OKLAHOMA  Senior

Sacramento-Kings-logo-design

Why the Pick: We have Hield dropping a little bit and the Kings will be ecstatic that he did. He fills a huge need for Sacramento. The Oklahoma star can score in bunches and is NBA ready. While he needs to work on creating his own shot, he is very competitive and will get immediate playing time.

#9. Toronto Raptors

Jacob Poeltl

7’1″ 250 Pounds

C  UTAH  SophomoreToronto-Raptors-Logo-design

Why the Pick: The Austrian born Poeltl had 2 very productive years at Utah and is one of the very few true Centers in this draft. He reminds us very much of former number 1 pick Andrew Bogut. Poeltl has a very nice low-post game and is a good passer for his height. He will provide front-court depth for Toronto and can slowly be acclimated into the NBA game due to the talent already on the Raptors roster. Poeltl will be a very steady, productive NBA player for a long time.

 

#10. Milwaukee Bucks

Henry Ellenson

6’10″ 240 Pounds

PF MARQUETTE  FreshmenMilwaukee-Bucks-logo-design

Why the pick: Ellenson is an excellent athlete for his size. He is a player who can rise up the draft boards before the June NBA Draft. He really impresses us with his overall skill-set. He can do a little bit of everything. The Kevin Love comparisons that he has been generating are not far-fetched. Playing at Marquette he stays in Milwaukee and can help the Bucks right away. The chance for a very good and long NBA career for Ellenson is there.

 

#11. Orlando Magic

Dejounte Murray

6’5″ 175 Pounds

PG/SG WASHINGTON  FreshmenOrlando-Magic-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Murray teamed with Marquese Chriss to form a fantastic 1-2 freshmen duo for the University of Washington. We see a lot of a young Jamal Crawford in the 6’5″ guards game. Murray is capable of playing both guard spots and will form a young and athletic back-court with current Magic point guard Elfrid Payton. 

 

#12. Utah Jazz

Domantas Sabonis

6’10″ 240 Pounds

PF GONZAGA  SophomoreUtah-Jazz-Logo-Design

Why the Pick: Sabonis might go higher than pick #12 come draft night. We really like his game. He is the son of former NBA player Arvydas Sabonis. Like his father, he is a tremendous passer for his size and has a nice array of low-post moves. He fills a need for Utah and will provide help for Derrick Favors.


#13. Phoenix Suns

Deyonta Davis

6’9″  240 Pounds

PF  MICHIGAN STATE  FreshmenPhoenix-Suns-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Deyonta Davis came off the bench for the Spartans as a freshmen, however he is the highest ranked prospect among Michigan State’s front-court players. Davis is one of the better shot-blockers available in this years draft. He needs a lot of seasoning, however he can be a real good player in 2-3 years.

 

#14. Chicago Bulls

Denzel Valentine

6’6″ 220 Pounds

SG  MICHIGAN STATE  SeniorChicago-Bulls-logo-design

Why the Pick: Valentine was a first team All-American this past season for the Spartans. He is a tough, physical guard that can come right into the NBA and play significant minutes. Staying for his senior year at Michigan State has made him a much better player. Look for him to have a solid, lengthy NBA career. We really like Valentine’s game and we look for him to be in the running for the 2017 NBA Rookie of the Year. He is ready to play and contribute right away.

 

#15. Denver Nuggets

Furkan Korkmaz

 SG/SF 6’7″ 210 Pounds

NO COLLEGE: Currently playing in Turkish LeagueDenver-Nuggets-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Currently playing in Turkey the 18-year old has one of the sweetest shooting strokes in the draft. He is a very good athlete with solid ball-handling skills. He will need to put on weight to handle the rigors of an 82-game season. Denver needs scoring and Korkmaz can provide that.

 

#16. Boston Celtics

Thon Maker

7’1″  220 Pounds

PF/C  Athlete Institute (High School)Boston-Celtics-logo-design

Why the Pick: Maker is currently in prep school but was just declared eligible for the NBA Draft. Click here for that story. Maker is a unique and mysterious talent since he has attended high school out of the U.S. He plays more like a guard than a big-man and shows a nice shooting stroke. He has a ton of upside. Boston has 3 first round picks and are looking at high upside players. With Dragan Bender at pick #3, and Maker at #16, they have found that upside.

 

#17. Memphis Grizzlies

Malachi Richardson

6’6″  200 Pounds

SG  SYRACUSE  FreshmenMemphis-Grizzlies-logo-design

Why the Pick: Richardson really helped his stock with an excellent showing in the NCAA tournament. His stock is rapidly rising as he is one of the most pure shooters in the draft. He has very good size for the shooting guard position and can handle the ball. The New Jersey native might sneak his way into the lottery come draft night. In this scenario, his scoring ability will help a Memphis team mightily as they often struggle to score points. 

 

#18. Detroit Pistons

Skal Labissiere

6’11″ 220 Pounds

PF/C KENTUCKY  FreshmenPISTONS

Why the Pick: Labissiere is one of this year’s drafts biggest wildcards. Rated as a top 3 high school prospect coming into the year he disappointed for the majority of his one year at Kentucky. However, he improved his play towards the end of the season. He shows a nice mid-range shooting stroke. It is imperative that the gets into an NBA strength training regimen. He will need a few years before he will see significant minutes for an NBA team, however he has some attributes you just can’t teach.

 

#19. Denver Nuggets

Malik Beasley

6’5″ 195 Pounds

SG FLORIDA STATE  FreshmenDenver-Nuggets-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Beasley was part of a dynamic freshmen duo along with Dwayne Bacon for the Seminoles. While Bacon has decided to return to Florida State, Beasley has entered the draft and has seen his stock rise. Beasley is an elite athlete with a very smooth shooting stroke. If he can improve his ball-handling he will be a very nice NBA player who has a lot of upside. Beasley might sneak his way into the back end of the lottery by draft night.

 

#20. Indiana Pacers

Brice Johnson

6’9″ 220 Pounds

PF NORTH CAROLINA  SeniorIndiana-Pacers-logo-design

Why the Pick: Johnson had a fantastic senior season for national runner-up North Carolina. He is a very good athlete who is at his best in an open court setting. Indiana did a great job developing rookie Myles Turner this past NBA season. They hope to do the same with Johnson.

 

#21. Atlanta Hawks

DeAndre Bembry

6’6″  205 Pounds

SG/SF  St. Joseph’s  JuniorHAWKS

Why the Pick: Bembry was the best player at the NBA Combine and is now a first round lock. He does everything well except shooting, which can be improved through repetitions. He has a chance to be a rookie of the year candidate and a very good NBA player. He is a steal here at pick number 21 and will help Atlanta out right away. Bembry is very good.

 

#22. Charlotte Hornets

Wade Baldwin

6’3″  195 POUNDS

PG  VANDERBILT  SophomoreHORNETS

Why the pick: The Vanderbilt sophomore possesses excellent size and strength for the position and is just scratching the surface of his abilities. A former high school teammate of 2015 number 1 overall pick Karl Anthony Towns, Baldwin is already a very good shooter. He has the opportunity to turn into a very good starting point guard in time.

 

#23. Boston Celtics

Timothe Luwawu

6’7″  200 Pounds

SG  NO COLLEGE: Currently playing in FranceBoston-Celtics-logo-design

Why the pick: The 20-year old Luwawu is currently playing in France. This is Boston’s 3rd pick in the first round. General Manager Danny Ainge is going for high risk/high reward in this draft. With this selection they can either bring Luwawu to Boston or let him play in France for another year or two. The Celtics can only have so many young players on their roster before free agency starts. Keeping Luwawu in France for a little while longer makes sense.

 

#24. Philadelphia 76ers

Tyler Ulis

5’9″  160 Pounds

PG  KENTUCKY  SophomorePhiladelphia-76ers-Logo-Design

Why the Pick: Tyler Ulis was perhaps the most exciting player in college basketball this past season. He teamed with Jamal Murray to form an excellent back-court for Kentucky. The knock on Ulis is his height. At only 5’9″ he will have trouble guarding opposing players. However, Ulis is an exceptional basketball player who is tough as nails. He is an excellent shooter, passer, and ball-handler who is phenomenal at running an offense. While his height might prevent him from becoming a full time NBA starter, he can carve out a role as an outstanding back-up point guard. The 76ers need guard help and get it with Ulis.

 

#25. LA Clippers

Demetrius Jackson

6’1″ 195 Pounds

PG  NOTRE DAME  JuniorLos-Angeles-clippers-logo-design

Why the Pick: We have compared Jackson to the Charlotte Hornet’s Kemba Walker. There are a lot of similarities in their respective games. Jackson has the ability to eventually be a solid starter in the NBA. The Notre Dame product has thrived playing in the ACC Conference and shows excellent leadership qualities. Jackson will spell All-Star point guard Chris Paul.

 

#26. Philadelphia 76ers

Patrick McCaw

6’6″  180 Pounds

SG  UNLV  SophomorePhiladelphia-76ers-Logo-Design

Why the Pick: McCaw is gaining a lot of attention from teams drafting in the back of the first round. The 76ers need outside shooting and the 6’6″ shooting guard fits the bill. In a few years McCaw has a chance to turn into a nice “3 and D” player.

 

#27. Toronto Raptors

Taurean Prince

6’7″ 220 Pounds

SF BAYLOR  SeniorToronto-Raptors-Logo-design

Why the Pick: We had Prince going to Toronto in our previous mock draft. He is a player who has grown on us the more we have watched him while he was at Baylor. The heart and soul of the Bears, Prince has a place in the NBA as a “3 and D” glue guy. He is an excellent on ball defender and can be a nice piece to Toronto’s second unit. He reminds us very much of current NBA players Tony Snell and DeMarre Carroll. A player who can consistently make the 3-point shot as well as playing good defense will find a spot in the NBA.

 

#28. Phoenix Suns

Cheick Diallo

6’9″  220 Pounds

PF/C  KANSAS  FreshmenPhoenix-Suns-Logo-design

Why the Pick: Diallo is your prototypical boom or bust type of player. We believe he should have stayed at Kansas for at least 1 more season. Diallo came off the bench for the Jayhawks and averaged 3pts and 2.5reb while only playing 7.5 minutes per game. These stats don’t exactly scream “first round NBA Draft pick”. However, for a lot of potential draft picks it is more about projection and potential than a players’ current ability. Diallo is a very raw but athletic player.

In time he can be a very good defensive player, especially rebounding and shot-blocking. He has virtually no offensive game besides put-back dunks. We aren’t as high on Diallo as others but in a little more than average NBA Draft his “potential” might be too hard for Phoenix to pass up. Diallo is a high risk/high reward type of player.

 

#29. San Antonio Spurs

Ante Zizic

6’11”  230 Pounds

PF/C  NO COLLEGE: Currently playing in CroatiaSPURS 222

Why the Pick: The Spurs are well-known to scout international players extensively. Zizic is no exception. At 6’11” and only 19-years old, he is a perfect candidate to stay overseas for another couple of years before he is ready to contribute in the NBA. 

 

#30. Golden State Warriors

Ben Bentil

6’8″  230 Pounds

PF  PROVIDENCE  SophomoreWARRIORS 2222

Why the Pick: Bentil was a warrior this season, tag-teaming with Kris Dunn to carry Providence on their backs and into the NCAA tournament. Bentil progressed as much as almost any player in the college game this year. We feel he still has room to grow with the chance to be a very good NBA player. He has a very good inside/outside game. Scouts have concerns about his attitude and maturity level. If he can erase these concerns, Bentil can be a good NBA player and would be a perfect fit in the Warriors’ system.

 

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