NBA Mock Draft

We are one week away from the 2021 NBA Draft, and with rumors swirling at an all-time high, there is no better time for a new mock draft.

With no picks being certain (although some seem that way), everything is up for grabs on what will happen on July 29th. Read below for an updated 2021 NBA Mock Draft of the top 20 picks, as well as stats, team position needs, and analysis for each pick.

1) Detroit Pistons: Cade Cunningham- PG (Oklahoma State)

Stats: 20.1 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 3.5 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.8 BPG, 43.8 FG%, 40 3P%, 84.6 FT%

Team Position Needs: Point guard/Shooting Guard, Center, Backup point guard-power forward

No matter how much Pistons GM Troy Weaver refuses to reveal the 1st pick, there is little doubt around the NBA that Cade Cunningham will be the first pick in the draft. His combination of shooting, size, and leadership gives him superstar potential and leaves Pistons fans excited for what he could bring to the team. Saddiq Bey and Isaiah Stewart proved their value last year, and while Killian Hayes was a disappointment, there is still hope he can live up to his potential. If all the pieces click for the Pistons, they might find themselves in the play in next year, with Cade as the leader.

2) Houston Rockets: Jalen Green- SG (G-League Ignite)

Stats: 17.9 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.5 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 46.1 FG%, 36.5 3P%, 82.9 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Point guard, Power forward, Backup Point Guard-Center

Jalen Green is a stud athlete with the potential to be an elite two-way player. The offense is there, as he showed in his time in the G-League, driving to the basket and using his athleticism to his advantage. The Rockets will give him free rein on the court, which will allow Green to develop and potentially become a 25 PPG scorer in no time. The thought of a Kevin Porter-Jalen Green backcourt is drool-worthy for Rockets fans. If both live up to their standard, then Houston might have the top young backcourt in the league.

3) Cleveland Cavaliers: Evan Mobley- C (USC)

Stats: 16.4 PPG, 8.7 RPG, 2.4 APG, 0.8 SPG, 2.9 BPG, 57.8 FG%, 30 3P%, 69.4 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Small Forward, Power Forward, Backup Point Guard-Center

Mobley makes very few mistakes on the court and is a player that every team dreams they have. He makes the right decision more times than not and will help his team win games. He might not have the flashy dunk or the big shot at the end of games but does all the little things on the court. The Cavaliers roster for the future is extremely uncertain. Collin Sexton is reportedly on the trade block, Kevin Love’s future is unsure, and Jarrett Allen is technically a free agent even though all signs point towards him returning to the Cavaliers. If Allen resigns, Mobley will play the 4 and can be a big piece into bringing back winning culture to Cleveland.

4) Toronto Raptors: Jalen Suggs- PG (Gonzaga)

Stats: 14.4 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 4.5 APG, 1.9 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 50.3 FG%, 33.7 3P%, 75.4 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Point Guard, Center, Backup Small Forward, Backup Power Forward, Backup Center

The Raptors get a perfect guy for their team at number 4. Suggs has an extremely high basketball IQ and is extremely poised on the court. He has great acceleration and is a sniper from around half-court (sorry UCLA fans). The greatest Raptor of all time Kyle Lowry is a free agent, so if he decides to leave then Suggs is a perfect replacement, and if not will be a great mentor to Suggs. The talent is there in Toronto, but playing 72 road games is never easy, and Suggs will help get them back to contenders in the east.

5) Orlando Magic: Scottie Barnes- PF (Florida State)

Stats: 10.3 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 4.1 APG, 1.5 SPG, 0.5 BPG, 50.3 FG%, 27.5 3P%, 62.1 FT%

Team Position Needs: Everything (but specifically a forward)

Scottie Barnes has become a draft darling for the experts with his insane wingspan and ability to do everything besides shoot. If he had a jump shot, we might have been hearing him in the top pick conversation. He’ll be a great defender in the league, and his passing at his size is impressive. Magic have a ton of young guys, but no one who really stands out as the future. At this point, it’s just a tryout to see who will be the future of the team, and Barnes might fit that profile. They do have some other good young players in Cole Anthony, Markelle Fultz, RJ Hampton, Jonathan Isaac, Chuma Okeke, Wendell Carter, and Mo Bamba to all split minutes, so that might be an issue.

6) Oklahoma City Thunder: Jonathan Kuminga- SF (G-League Ignite)

Stats: 15.8 PPG, 7.2 RPG, 2.7 APG, 1 SPG, 0.8 BPG, 38.7 FG%, 24.6 3P%, 62.5 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Power Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

If there was an award for biggest boom or bust guy in the draft, Kuminga is your guy. If he bans out, he can be the best player in this draft and an elite player in this league. However, the latter can see him getting limited minutes 5 seasons from now. He was an incredible player in high school, but really looked out of place in the G-League, so which Kuminga we’re going to see in the pros will determine whether the Thunder made the right pick or not. Besides Shai Gilgeous Alexander, the Thunder don’t have any notable guys with star potential, even though Lu Dort and Aleksej Pokusevski had solid seasons. Kuminga could be a great pick and get big minutes on the Thunder to speed up his development.

7) Golden State Warriors: Moses Moody- SG (Arkansas)

Stats: 16.8 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.7 BPG, 42.7 FG%, 35.8 3P%, 81.2 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Power Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard Point Guard-Center

The Warriors get this pick from the Timberwolves in the Deangelo Russell trade. This is where the draft starts to get interesting. The first six players drafted are more or less locked at this point, but seven and on can go any way. There are a ton of really talented shooting guards the Warriors have to choose from, and they go with Moody here. Moody plays with a lot of poise and has shown signs of high-level basketball at Arkansas, and has received a lot of comparison to NBA champions Kris Middleton. Klay Thompson is coming off two major injuries and at 31 years old, he might not be the same Klay we know and love. Moody is a guy who will really strengthen the bench and provide a scoring boost for the Warriors. There are also rumors of the Warriors trading this pick, so keep an eye on that come draft night.

8) Orlando Magic: James Bouknight- SG (Connecticut)

Stats: 18.7 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 1.8 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 44.7 FG%, 29.3 3P%, 77.8 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Everything

The Magic get this pick from the Bulls in the Nikola Vucevic trade. Bouknight is a really talented scorer, and a strong combine calmed the nerves of the scouts that questioned his jump shot. Bouknight was a little inconsistent last season, but if he can stay healthy he can be a big problem for defenses. As mentioned earlier, the Magic are essentially holding tryouts for a bunch of young players to see who they like, and Bouknight can easily make the cut if he can translate his scoring skillset to the NBA.

9) Sacramento Kings: Franz Wagner- SF (Michigan)

Stats: 12.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 3 APG, 1.3 SPG, 1 BPG, 47.7 FG%, 34.3 3P%, 83.5 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Power Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

Wagner can be a great defender in this league, and he also has a little bit of an offense toolkit as well. He can guard the 2-4 with ease, and at 6’8, can slide to the power forward. The Kings need frontcourt help, and Wagner can be that guy. Marvin Bagley, unfortunately, didn’t work out for them, but a young backcourt of De’Aaron Fox and Tyrese Haliburton shows promise for a bright future for the Kings. With Wagner in the lineup, the Kings can finally be back on track for a playoff appearance in the near future.

10) New Orleans Pelicans: Josh Giddey- PG (Australia)

Stats: 10.8 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 7.4 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.5 BPG, 42.5 FG%, 29.3 3P%, 69.1 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

Giddey’s elite vision and passing make him a very intriguing prospect. At 6’8, he is a very tall guard but uses it to his advantage. His biggest issue is shooting, but he seems to be working on adding a jumper so that he can fit in the modern NBA. Lonzo Ball is out, so adding Giddey will give guys like Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson a bunch of good looks with his passing skills. This doesn’t solve the shooting problem, but fairs as a solid replacement for Ball and someone who can be really solid in the NBA.

11) Charlotte Hornets: Kai Jones- PF/C (Texas)

Stats: 8.8 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 0.6 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.9 BPG, 58 FG%, 38.2 3P%, 68.9 FT%

Team Position Needs: Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

The stats might not be impressive, but Kai Jones’ athleticism gets him picked at 11 in this NBA Mock Draft. He can be a solid rim protector and a beast on the boards if he pans out, but a lot of question marks surround him. Still, giving Lamelo another athletic big is always a good thing and he is a solid fit for this Hornets team.

12) San Antonio Spurs: Alperen Sengun- C (Turkey)

Stats: 19 PPG, 8.7 RPG, 2.7 APG, 1.3 SPG, 1.6 BPG, 63.2 FG%, 20 3P%, 79.4 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Small Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

Sengun is one of the most underappreciated players in this draft. He put up incredible stats in one of the top leagues in the world, and he was just 18 years old. His post-game is unbelievable, and he’s a really great passer for his size. The biggest negatives for him is he’s undersized for a center and not a great shooter, but those certainly have been made up for with his other skills. The Spurs are in a weird position right now between tanking and staying competitive, and Sengun can be a guy that can keep them competitive. He’ll have to compete with Jakob Poeltl for minutes but should have no problem showing his worth and developing a really solid frontcourt with Olympian Keldon Johnson.

13) Indiana Pacers: Davion Mitchell- PG (Baylor)

Stats: 14 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 5.5 APG, 1.9 SPG, 0.4 BPG, 51.1 FG%, 44.7 3P%, 64.1 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Small Forward, Backup Shooting Guard-Center

With the 13th pick in this NBA Mock Draft, the Indiana Pacers select Davion Mitchell. Davion Mitchell is a tremendous player both on the offensive and defensive end and a great pick for the Pacers. He took a huge leap on the offensive end this season with his three-point shot and driving ability, and was the best defender in college basketball. The biggest thing holding him back is his age, but Mitchell has proven that he has gotten better with age and will continue to do so. The Pacers are in a position where they should just take the best player available, and if this season doesn’t pan out they will probably blow it up. If Mitchell is still available at 13, don’t be surprised if a playoff team trades up to take a guy like Mitchell who can help right away and be a rotational player.

14) Golden State Warriors: Corey Kispert- SF (Gonzaga)

Stats: 18.6 PPG, 5 RPG, 1.8 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.4 BPG, 52.9 FG%, 44 3P%, 87.8 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Power Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard Point Guard-Center

A third splash brother? Kispert certainly fits that criteria, being a near 50-40-90 guy last season and the best shooter in this draft. Once again, age plays a big concern, but Kispert can make the big shot and provide a scoring boost when needed. Kispert is a perfect fit for this Warriors team and can provide scoring off the bench when Curry, Thompson, or Wiggins is out.

15) Washington Wizards: Keon Johnson- SG (Tennessee)

Stats: 11.3 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 2.5 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.4 BPG, 44.9 FG%, 27.1 3P%, 70.3 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Center, Backup Point Guard-Small Forward, Backup Center

Keon Johnson is another boom or bust guy, but scouts do appreciate a prospect with a 48 inch vertical, a combine record. Johnson struggled at Tennessee in his only season but has the tools to be a solid NBA player. With a good leader and team, he can really hone these skills and become a steal in the draft. With Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal trades circulating the internet, there is a clear need for a guard on the Wizards, and even if neither gets traded, they will serve as good leaders for Johnson. Johnson might take a few years to get to where he wants but can do so.

16) Oklahoma City Thunder: Jalen Johnson- PF (Duke)

Stats: 11.2 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 2.2 APG, 1.2 SPG, 1.2 BPG, 52.3 FG%, 44.4 3P%, 63.2 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Power Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

The Thunder get this pick from the Celtics in the Kemba Walker trade. Jalen Johnson is a project, and can really be a talented player in this league. His shooting numbers were there, but if he was so unhappy with his minutes at Duke that he left, then it is a serious concern what will happen if the same applies in the NBA. The Thunder should just stack up on wings and forwards, and by taking Kuminga and Johnson, they are doing just that.

17) Memphis Grizzlies: Chris Duarte- SG (Oregon)

Stats: 17.1 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 2.7 APG, 1.9 SPG, 0.9 BPG, 53.2 FG%, 42.4 3P%, 81 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Backup Guard

Duarte brings so many positives on both the offensive and defensive ends, and Memphis just feels like a perfect fit for him. He can shoot, takes smart shots, and is a great on and off-ball defender. A huge minus for him is that he is already 24 years old, but the Grizzlies are looking for another piece that can take them from a fringe playoff team to a contender in the West, and Duarte can help the cause. He is a lot like Dillon Brooks, the current starting shooting guard for the Grizzlies, so having the two of them on the same team is a big win for them.

18) Oklahoma City Thunder: Usman Garuba- PF/C (Spain)

Stats: 4.7 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 0.8 APG, 0.5 BPG, 47.1 FG%, 31.6 3P%, 65.9 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Power Forward, Center, Backup Point Guard-Center

Ignore the stats, like many prospects overseas, Garuba didn’t get too many minutes for his professional team. Still, he has the toolkit, and in the scrimmage against team USA, he held his own against some of the top guys which is a promising sign. OKC doesn’t really have a center, so adding Garuba is a nice touch for a team that should probably trade one of their three top 18 picks.

19) New York Knicks: Trey Murphy III- SG/SF (Virginia)

Stats: 11.3 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.2 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.4 BPG, 50.3 FG%, 43.3 3P%, 92.7 FT%

Team Position Needs: Shooting Guard, Backup Shooting Guard, Backup Small Forward, Backup Center

Going 50-40-90 on any level is extremely impressive, and Murphy did it at ease. He is an absolute sniper from beyond the arc, and someone who got hot frequently and carried Virginia at times during conference play. The Knicks really struggled to score down the stretch in the playoffs last season, and with Derrick Rose possibly leaving, Murphy can be that guy to take a big shot or make a key bucket for the Knicks.

20) Atlanta Hawks: Ziaire Williams- SF (Stanford)

Stats: 10.7 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 2.2 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.6 BPG, 37.4 FG%, 29.1 3P%, 79.6 FT%

 

Team Position Needs: Nothing (Best Available)

Williams didn’t have the freshman year he hoped for, but the raw talent is definitely there. If he can add muscle to his frame and develop a more consistent jumper, he can definitely be a steal for Atlanta. The Hawks don’t need to fill a need, with really solid starters and bench players at each position, so this will give time for Williams to develop and be part of the Hawks long-term plan.

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