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2021 NBA Draft Rumors: Rockets, Cavs Trending Toward Picking Jalen Green, Evan Mobley

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJuly 29, 2021

ORLANDO, FL - MARCH 8: Jalen Green #4 of Team Ignite handles the ball during the game against the Raptors 905 during the NBA G League Playoffs on March 8, 2021 at AdventHealth Arena in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by Juan Ocampo/NBAE via Getty Images)
Juan Ocampo/NBAE via Getty Images

The first few picks of the 2021 NBA draft are becoming clearer as we head into Thursday's event.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Houston Rockets "continue to trend toward" taking Jalen Green at No. 2 overall, followed by the Cleveland Cavaliers selecting Evan Mobley at No. 3.

It comes after the Detroit Pistons reportedly finalized their choice for the No. 1 pick and will select Cade Cunningham, per Wojnarowski.

While nothing is official with the draft until the names are called, this opening to the first round has been a common projection throughout the past few months. Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman also listed Cunningham, Green and Mobley in order in his final mock draft.

Cunningham might be the biggest name in the class after an impressive season at Oklahoma State, but the Rockets would likely be happy with Green thanks to his upside as a pure scorer.

The 6'5" guard skipped college and spent last season with the G League Ignite, averaging 17.9 points per game against fellow professionals. He has elite athleticism that helps create his own opportunities, especially when attacking the net. If he improves his 36.5 three-point percentage, Green can be a deadly offensive weapon.

The addition would give the Rockets a valuable building block alongside Christian Wood.

Cleveland, meanwhile, would add one of the draft's most versatile players in Mobley. The 7'0" center is already an elite defender, averaging 2.9 blocks per game at USC last season, while his mobility, handle and shooting touch could make him an offensive star.

Even if the Cavaliers want to re-sign restricted free-agent center Jarrett Allen, Mobley likely has too much upside to pass up at No. 3.

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