The guesswork about the draft order is over. Every fan, general manager and other interested parties know where each team with a first-round selection will pick in the 2014 NBA draft.
The final piece of the puzzle was determined on Tuesday night with the NBA draft lottery.
Here's a look at the lottery results:
With the picks in place, here's a look at the projected first-round selections for all 30 slots.
|1||Cleveland Cavaliers||Jabari Parker||Duke|
|2||Milwaukee Bucks||Joel Embiid||Kansas|
|3||Philadelphia 76ers||Andrew Wiggins||Kansas|
|4||Orlando Magic||Dante Exum||Australia|
|5||Utah Jazz||Noah Vonleh||Indiana|
|6||Boston Celtics||Julius Randle||Kentucky|
|7||Los Angeles Lakers||Marcus Smart||Oklahoma State|
|8||Sacramento Kings||Aaron Gordon||Arizona|
|9||Charlotte Hornets||Doug McDermott||Creighton|
|10||Philadelphia 76ers||Dario Saric||Croatia|
|11||Denver Nuggets||James Young||Kentucky|
|12||Orlando Magic||Tyler Ennis||Syracuse|
|13||Minnesota Timberwolves||Nik Stauskas||Michigan|
|14||Phoenix Suns||Jusuf Nurkic||Bosnia|
|15||Atlanta Hawks||Rodney Hood||Duke|
|16||Chicago Bulls||Shabazz Napier||UConn|
|17||Boston Celtics||Zach LaVine||UCLA|
|18||Phoenix Suns||T.J. Warren||NC State|
|19||Chicago Bulls||Clint Capela||Switzerland|
|20||Toronto Raptors||Kristaps Porzingis||Latvia|
|21||Oklahoma City Thunder||Adreian Payne||Michigan State|
|22||Memphis Grizzlies||Gary Harris||Michigan State|
|23||Utah Jazz||Kyle Anderson||UCLA|
|24||Charlotte Hornets||P.J. Hairston||North Carolina|
|25||Houston Rockets||K.J. McDaniels||Clemson|
|26||Miami Heat||Glenn Robinson III||Michigan|
|27||Phoenix Suns||Jordan Adams||UCLA|
|28||Los Angeles Clippers||Mitch McGary||Michigan|
|29||Oklahoma City Thunder||Elfird Payton||Louisiana-Lafayette|
|30||San Antonio Spurs||Patric Young||Florida|
What the Top Three Should Do
For the second year in a row, the Cleveland Cavaliers have the No. 1 overall pick. It's the third time in four years the Cavs will have the top selection. In 2011, the team took Kyrie Irving No. 1. Last year, Cleveland tabbed Anthony Bennett with the top pick.
Irving has blossomed into a star, although injuries have caused him to miss 65 games in three seasons.
Most of Bennett's rookie season was dreadful, but he did show some flashes of the form that convinced the team to call his name first in the draft.
Many people are already calling Bennett a bust. Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group seems to be in that number.
Cleveland should be banned from the top pick until Anthony Bennett becomes a starter— Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) May 21, 2014
His sophomore season will go a long way toward determining who he is in the NBA for the long haul. As bad as things looked, no kid who just turned 21 in March can be called a bust just yet. However, there's no doubt he needs to show something quickly.
With a core of Irving, Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson and a hopefully improved Bennett, the Cavs need a player who can shoot from the outside and score in the post. They can't afford to miss on this pick.
When a team has had the No. 1 selection so frequently in a short period of time, it should have better results than what the Cavs have generated. There's a lot of pressure on the team to win now, and subsequently on the player picked to produce.
With that said, the Cavs need to target the surest thing amongst the top-three players—if they keep the pick. There's some early reports that suggest the Cavs favor Kansas' Joel Embiid.
Have a feeling Joel Embiid if he checks out medically is the guy the Cavs would take today.— Probasketballdraft (@Probballdraft) May 21, 2014
But potential back problems could and should scare the Cavs away.
The safest bet would be Duke's Jabari Parker. He may have the lowest upside between he, Andrew Wiggins and Embiid, but he also has the lowest bust potential.
Parker proved he could score in bunches with Duke, despite playing out of position all year. The 19-year-old averaged 19.1 points, 8.7 rebounds and shot 36 percent from three-point range as a freshman.
Get him in his more natural position of small forward, and he'll shine on the next level.
Drafting him might make Bennett expendable, but getting last year's No. 1 pick some success could drive his trade value up.
The Bucks are in a similar situation as the Cavs. They too can't afford to miss with this pick. Because of that, there has to be some hesitation in taking Embiid at No. 2.
Teams usually lean toward size, but that doesn't always work out. Just look at the 2007 NBA draft. The Portland Trail Blazers took Greg Oden over Kevin Durant. We all know how that turned out.
With Embiid having suffered a recent back injury, the red flags are up.
Even if he checks out with medical staffs around the NBA, there still have to be some concerns. That's precisely why the Cavs should pass on him. Assuming Embiid is giving a clean bill of health, the Bucks might still favor Wiggins, as well.
However, it's almost impossible to imagine two bad teams passing on a player with Embiid's upside.
His footwork reminds many of Hakeem Olajuwon. Despite being relatively raw, the 7-footer has already demonstrated the ability to impact a game defensively.
To go along with the 11.1 points he averaged as a freshman, Embiid pulled down 8.1 rebounds and blocked 2.6 shots per contest.
Everything about him says his rebounding and offensive tools should continue to grow as he gets more established. The big question mark is health.
Embidd posted this on the night of the draft lottery on his Instagram account.
Don't read too much into the fact that a Cavs hat is missing from the picture. Cleveland is still a possibility. However, when all the research is done, it feels like he'd be more apt to land in Milwaukee.
On the fear of failure scale, Cleveland has to be a little higher than Milwaukee.
The Bucks will be willing to gamble if the Cavs are not.
When this is all said and done, the 76ers could possibly come out the best of the teams with the top-three selections.
Out of the trio of Wiggins, Embiid and Parker, the only player the 76ers probably wouldn't take is Embiid. If the latter were to somehow slip here, it would be ludicrous to take him one year after drafting Nerlens Noel—another talented big coming off a major injury.
Instead, taking Wiggins, as we have it in this scenario is an awesome scenario for Philly.
With Noel, Rookie of the Year Michael Carter-Williams, Thaddeus Young, Tony Wroten, whomever the team drafts with its 10th selection and up to $29 million in cap room, per Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders, the Sixers could be ready to make a big jump in the Eastern Conference standings.
Wiggins would give the Sixers another dynamic and athletic wing player. His versatility would be a great fit with MCW and Noel. Not many teams would be able to run with this athletic group.
If the team signed a veteran star, it could be dangerous.
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