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NBA Draft 2014: Date, Selection Order, Lottery Predictions and Top Prospects

Kansas' Joel Embiid, right, talks with head coach Bill Self during practice for the NCAA college basketball tournament Thursday, March 20, 2014, in St. Louis. Kansas is scheduled to play Eastern Kentucky in a second-round game on Friday. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Jeff Roberson
Tim KeeneyContributor IApril 17, 2014

Several teams have had their eyes on the 2014 NBA draft for quite some time, but now they can actually admit it. 

With the conclusion of the season on Wednesday night, "Tank Fest 2014" has officially come to a close and 14 teams will now begin the offseason. 

The Milwaukee Bucks are the big "winners," "earning" the best odds for the top pick from what has the look of a historically loaded class, but there will be plenty of other intrigue as we approach draft day in June. 

Let's take a look at everything you need to know. 

 

Date: Thursday, June 26, 2014

Time: 7 p.m. ET

Location: New York City

TV: ESPN

Live Stream: WatchESPN

 

Current Selection Order

The end of the season clears things up a little bit, but the draft lottery (Tuesday, May 20) still has the potential to shake up the first 14 picks. Here's a look at how things currently stand: 

2014 NBA Draft Order (Pre-Lottery)
Pick No.TeamAcquired From
1Milwaukee Bucks
2Philadelphia 76ers
3Orlando Magic
4Utah Jazz
5Boston Celtics
6Los Angeles Lakers
7Sacramento Kings
8Detroit Pistons
9Cleveland Cavaliers
10Philadelphia 76ersNew Orleans Pelicans
11Denver Nuggets
12Orlando MagicDenver Nuggets, via New York Knicks
13Minnesota Timberwolves
14Phoenix Suns
15Atlanta Hawks
16Chicago BullsCharlotte Bobcats
17Boston CelticsBrooklyn Nets
18Phoenix SunsWashington Wizards
19Chicago Bulls
20Toronto Raptors
21Oklahoma City ThunderDallas Mavericks
22Memphis Grizzlies
23Utah JazzGolden State Warriors
24Charlotte BobcatsPortland Trail Blazers
25Houston Rockets
26Miami Heat
27Phoenix SunsIndiana Pacers
28Los Angeles Clippers
29Oklahoma City Thunder
30San Antonio Spurs

 

Lottery Notes

  • Philadelphia 76ers receive New Orleans Pelicans' first-round pick unless it is in the top five. 
  • Charlotte Bobcats receive Detroit Pistons' first-round pick unless it is in the top eight. 
  • Denver Nuggets receive New York Knicks' first-round pick
  • Orlando Magic receive one of Denver Nuggets' two first-round picks (whichever of Denver's or New York's is lowest)
  • Phoenix Suns receive Minnesota Timberwolves' first-round pick unless it is in the top 13

 

Lottery Predictions

Lottery Predictions
Pick No.TeamPlayerSchool/Country
1Milwaukee BucksAndrew WigginsKansas
2Philadelphia 76ersJabari ParkerDuke
3Orlando MagicJoel EmbiidKansas
4Utah JazzJulius RandleKentucky
5Boston CelticsDante ExumAustralia
6Los Angeles LakersMarcus SmartOklahoma State
7Sacramento KingsAaron GordonArizona
8Detroit PistonsGary HarrisMichigan State
9Cleveland CavaliersNoah VonlehIndiana
10Philadelphia 76ersJames YoungKentucky
11Denver NuggetsNik StauskasMichigan
12Orlando MagicTyler EnnisSyracuse
13Minnesota TimberwolvesRodney HoodDuke
14Phoenix SunsDoug McDermottCreighton
Based on pre-lottery order

 


Top Prospects

Andrew Wiggins, Kansas

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 13:  Andrew Wiggins #22 of the Kansas Jayhawks reacts after making a three-pointer during the Big 12 Basketball Tournament quarterfinal game against the Oklahoma State Cowboys at Sprint Center on March 13, 2014 in Kansas City, Miss
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Carrying comparisons to LeBron James out of high school isn't easy, and Andrew Wiggins found that out the hard way. Despite putting up averages of 17.1 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.0 blocks and 1.2 steals per game as a freshman with the Jayhawks, Wiggins was often the subject of mass—and typically unjustified—scrutiny. 

Don't let the lingering criticism—which only increased after a massively disappointing NCAA tournament—fool you, though. The 19-year-old Canadian has the highest ceiling in the draft.

SMU head coach and former NBA champion Larry Brown put it simply, via USA Today's Eric Prisbell and Scott Gleeson:

I feel for Wiggins every day. You hear one game, 'Oh, he's the first pick.' Then the next game, 'Oh, I'm so disappointed.' That stuff drives me crazy. He's a 19-year-old freshman. He is a special kid."

Blessed with size (6'8", 197 pounds and a wingspan of 7'0", per DraftExpress.com) and freakish athleticism, Wiggins has the "look" of an NBA wing. He is unstoppable in transition or whenever he gets a step toward the hoop, he has a dangerous-albeit-still-inconsistent jump shot, and he has potential to be a shut-down defender. 

You can nitpick about his aggressiveness or killer instinct, but the physical tools and talent are there to create a future MVP. 

 

Jabari Parker, Duke

RALEIGH, NC - MARCH 21:  Jabari Parker #1 of the Duke Blue Devils reacts in the second half against the Mercer Bears in the second round of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at PNC Arena on March 21, 2014 in Raleigh, North Carolina.  (Photo by Str
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

We'll put Jabari Parker here for now, but he has yet to officially declare for the draft. A decision is undoubtedly coming soon, and pundits seem split on what his ultimate decision will be. 

Still, if we're talking "top prospects," it would be blasphemous not to include the only freshman on this year's AP All-America team

Of this year's incredible crop of underclassmen, the Chicago native—who has also received comparisons to James—is widely considered as the safest bet. 

Capable of scoring from all three levels on the court, Parker is a versatile weapon who can handle the ball in transition, score with his back to the basket, face up out of the post, crash the offensive glass or shoot from the outside. 

Although he also suffered an early NCAA tourney exit, he led an offensively stout Duke squad in scoring (19.3 points per game) and rebounding (8.7), also adding 1.1 steals and 1.2 blocks per contest. 

Parker's defense leaves a little bit to be desired, and his potential may not be as sky-high as Wiggins', but he can make a significant impact right away. 

 

Joel Embiid, Kansas

LAWRENCE, KS - FEBRUARY 24:  Joel Embiid #21 of the Kansas Jayhawks looks to pass the ball against D.J. Bennett #31 of the Oklahoma Sooners in the second half at Allen Fieldhouse on February 24, 2014 in Lawrence, Kansas.  Kansas won 83-75. (Photo by Ed Zu
Ed Zurga/Getty Images

The pre-draft process can't get any more crucial for Joel Embiid

In terms of pure talent, the 7-footer is a rare prospect who would likely be the frontrunner for the No. 1 pick. But after missing the end of the season and NCAA tournament with a back injury, there are concerns about Embiid's health. 

Despite starting basketball at 16 years of age, the Cameroon native, at times, looked like the most dominant player in the country, averaging 11.2 points, 8.1 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 2.6 blocks and 0.9 steals per game. 

The physical package (7'0", 250 pounds, impressive mobility) is obviously nice, but Embiid's offensive repertoire and polish despite so little experience is what makes him such a tantalizingly attractive prospect. 

Embiid already has an array of moves out of the post, he passes well out of double-teams, and he knows how to protect the rim without fouling. 

There is certainly risk here—as is always true with players of Embiid's size—but there is also once-in-a-decade potential. 

 

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