2014 NBA Mock Draft: Current Projections for Each 1st-Round Team

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2014 NBA Mock Draft: Current Projections for Each 1st-Round Team
Jesse D. Garrabrant/Getty Images

The 2014 NBA draft is now just one week away, and it won't be long until we know where basketball's most promising prospects will call home.

In one of the deepest and most talented draft classes in years, there's no shortage of franchise-changing athletes available in the first round of this year's draft.

NBA franchises have been doing their due diligence, bringing in prospects for workouts and interviews, as they finalize their big boards.

There's still much that can change before June 26 rolls around—draft-altering trades are a big part of this process—but based on what we currently know, let's take a look at how the first round of the 2014 NBA draft could potentially shake out.

 

Draft Viewing Information

Date: Thursday, June 26

Time: 7 p.m. ET

Channel: ESPN

Live Stream: WatchESPN

 

Mock Draft 

1. Cleveland Cavaliers: Joel Embiid, Kansas

It all comes down to how good—or badEmbiid's medial exam goes with the Cavaliers. However, things keep looking better in those regards, according to a tweet from Chad Ford of ESPN:

The team's center situation is rather unsettled going forward, and Embiid's high ceiling could give the team a dominating frontcourt presence for years to come. However, the Cavaliers will have to remain patient through his early learning curve.

 

2. Milwaukee Bucks: Jabari Parker, Duke

The Bucks may be undergoing a rebuilding process, but they would love to grab a player who can contribute immediately. Parker is an NBA-ready prospect who could help this team become far more dynamic on offense alongside Larry Sanders and Giannis Antetokounmpo.

 

3. Philadelphia 76ers: Andrew Wiggins, Kansas

Wiggins falling to the 76ers is perfect for this organization. The team already has some nice developing talent in place, and Wiggins not only fits a major need, but he will also be in a perfect situation to develop and create chemistry with Michael Carter-Williams and Nerlens Noel.

 

4. Orlando Magic: Dante Exum, Australia

At 6'6", Exum has great length for an NBA guard. Given his aggressive, get-to-the-rim style of play, his size will serve him well offensively and on the defensive end of the court. Factoring in his stroke from downtown, Exum should be capable of playing multiple positions for Orlando, should the team decide to tinker with its lineup.

 

5. Utah Jazz: Noah Vonleh, Indiana

Vonleh didn't put up monster numbers while at Indiana, but the power forward's size, length and offseason workouts have garnered the attention of NBA franchises. He brings the ability to stretch the floor and will be an instant presence on the defensive end of the court.

 

6. Boston Celtics: Aaron Gordon, Arizona

With the Celtics needing help across the board, the team may look more toward upside rather than NBA readiness here. Sure, Gordon's high energy level will find him time on the court right away—he's a great rebounder already—but once he develops a jumper, he could end up having one of the biggest impacts of any prospect in this year's class.

 

7. Los Angeles Lakers: Julius Randle, Kentucky

Los Angeles could go with a guard here; however, this team wants to immediately right the ship and get back into contention. With the bulk of the Lakers frontcourt entering free agency, adding the NBA-ready Randle here makes plenty of sense.

 

8. Sacramento Kings: Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State

Sacramento could use a defensively sound guard with a skill set that allows him to become an instant contributor. That's Smart in a nutshell. Already a good defender and reliable ball-handler, once Smart develops a consistent shot from downtown, he'll become a tremendous threat.

 

9. Charlotte Hornets: Doug McDermott, Creighton

The Hornets could use a shooting small forward capable of logging some serious minutes right away. McDermott proved he could carry a team in college with his ability to drain buckets from all over the court. With a better supporting cast in Charlotte, he could put up monster numbers.

 

10. Philadelphia 76ers: Dario Saric, Croatia

After selecting Wiggins earlier in the draft, Philadelphia will look to bolster its frontcourt here. This team needs a stable power forward, and Saric's ability to facilitate and defend will go a long way as this team continues to develop.

 

11. Denver Nuggets: Gary Harris, Michigan State

Harris' ability to shoot, facilitate and defend should make this decision a no-brainer for the Nuggets. His scoring ability will allow this team to continue to put up some serious numbers, and his ability to defend the perimeter will help improve the team's 28th-ranked defense from a season ago.

After all, ESPN's Dave McMenamin tweeted what Harris thinks is his biggest strength:

 

12. Orlando Magic: James Young, Kentucky

Young brings a great developmental addition to the Magic's wing. One of the draft's youngest players, he still averaged 14.3 points per game on a very talented Kentucky team last season. Once he improves his shot selection and ball-handling skills, he can emerge as a great scoring threat down the road.

 

13. Minnesota Timberwolves: Nik Stauskas, Michigan

The Timberwolves will be looking for a shooter here, and they don't have to look any further than Stauskas. With tremendous range and a great stroke from downtown, Stauskas put up 17.5 points per game last season while connecting on 47.0 percent of his shots from the field and an impressive 44.2 percent from behind the arc.

 

14. Phoenix Suns: Elfrid Payton, Louisiana-Lafayette

Phoenix could use some depth and athleticism in its backcourt to keep up its high-octane offensive scheme. Payton certainly fits the mold. Highly athletic with great length, he can drain buckets from outside, get to the rim and contribute on defense.

 

15. Atlanta Hawks: Zach LaVine, UCLA

LaVine may be a point guard, but for now, his biggest strengths are his athleticism and shooting ability. LaVine's shown promise with his ability to attack the basket and knock down buckets from outside. Those traits, along with his freakish athletic ability, make him a very intriguing prospect with plenty of upside.

 

16. Chicago Bulls: Tyler Ennis, Syracuse

While Ennis may not be the most dynamic point guard in this year's draft, the Bulls desperately need a reliable player who can contribute off the bench and act as an insurance policy for the oft-injured Derrick Rose. Ennis is a good facilitator and is more athletic than he's given credit for, according to a tweet from Ford:

 

17. Boston Celtics: Clint Capela, Switzerland

Boston continues to add to its frontcourt here by selecting the big, athletic Capela. He has the size to play center in the NBA, but has also shown some great leaping ability and a prowess on defense. Capela worked out for the Celtics and summed himself up, according to the team's official Twitter account:

 

18. Phoenix Suns: T.J. Warren, North Carolina State

Warren doesn't necessarily have great range—he shot just 26.7 percent from behind the arc last season—but he has the knack for getting to the basket. With so much speed and athleticism on the Phoenix roster, he'll have plenty of chances to find open lanes.

 

19. Chicago Bulls: Rodney Hood, Duke

The Bulls drafted Ennis earlier as an insurance policy for Derrick Rose. Now the team will grab Hood to increase its offensive effectiveness. Hood can drain buckets from anywhere and should be able to step in from day one. His presence will go a long way for a team that ranked last in scoring last season.

 

20. Toronto Raptors: Adreian Payne, Michigan State

Toronto needs some immediate frontcourt help. Luckily, Payne is on the board here, and he is an NBA-ready prospect. Payne has the ability to stretch the floor and is a great defender coming from Tom Izzo's system in Michigan State. He'll log some major minutes right away in Toronto.

 

21. Oklahoma City Thunder: Jusuf Nurkic, Bosnia

Nurkic has plenty of traits NBA teams are highly coveting. There isn't a bevy of available big men in this year's draft, and the 6'11" center has the soft hands capable of flourishing at the position. Although, he'll need some development given his lack of athleticism and may be a couple years away from contributing.

 

22. Memphis Grizzlies: Cleanthony Early, Wichita State

Memphis has a need at small forward and could also use a competent shooter. Early may be the best option on the board at this point in the draft. He led a fast-paced Shockers team to an undefeated record last season, scoring 16.4 points per game in the process. His offensive skill set will translate to positional versatility in the NBA.

 

23. Utah Jazz: K.J. McDaniels, Clemson

McDaniels has a nice, well-rounded skill set on the offensive end of the court, averaging 17.1 points per game last season at Clemson. But what's even more impressive is his defensive ability. McDaniels plays much bigger than his size indicates, as he recorded an average of 7.1 rebounds and 2.8 blocks per game last season.

 

24. Charlotte Hornets: P.J. Hairston, Texas Legends

Charlotte continues to add NBA-ready shooters with the selection of Hairston here. This team is on the brink of doing big things in the playoffs, and the additions of McDermott earlier and Hairston here will help make that happen.

 

25. Houston Rockets: Glenn Robinson III, Michigan

Robinson was able to produce an average of 13.1 points per game last season at Michigan despite a great amount of offensive talent around him. Even though his outside shooting percentage dropped last year, he's still a strong all-around scorer.

 

26. Miami Heat: Shabazz Napier, Connecticut

Napier absolutely captivated the nation during the 2014 NCAA tournament. He showed a great deal of shooting, ball-handling and facilitating ability and appears NBA-ready. With the Heat in win-now mode, he'll be a great addition to the team's backcourt rotation.

 

27. Phoenix Suns: Jordan Adams, UCLA

Adams showed a nice improvement on the offensive end of the court last season despite a very talented roster. He tallied 17.4 points per game while shooting 48.5 percent from the field and 35.6 percent from downtown. He adds another element of offensive explosiveness to the Suns' athletic offensive scheme.

 

28. Los Angeles Clippers: Jerami Grant, Syracuse

Grant won't light up scoreboards, but he is a very capable rebounder and shot-blocker. His tweener size could allow him to play multiple positions. The Clippers have a great amount of offensive firepower, and Grant could be molded into a great defensive option in this system.

 

29. Oklahoma City Thunder: Jordan Clarkson, Missouri

The 6'5" Clarkson has great size for his position and has been impressive during offseason workouts. The Thunder could use some depth in their backcourt, and Clarkson could serve as a nice rotational piece while he develops his long ball.

 

30. San Antonio Spurs: Thanasis Antetokounmpo, Delaware 87ers

The Spurs have an incredibly deep roster and could go a number of ways here. Selecting Antetokounmpo gives this team a great option for the future. He plays incredibly fast and may even be more athletic than his brother, Giannis.

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