2015 NBA Mock Draft: Predicting How 1st Round Shakes Out, Midseason Edition

Jonathan Wasserman@@NBADraftWassNBA Lead WriterJanuary 30, 2015

2015 NBA Mock Draft: Predicting How 1st Round Shakes Out, Midseason Edition

0 of 30

    Michael Hickey/Getty Images

    Our 2015 NBA mock draft board has seen a shake-up at the top.

    For the first time all season, we have a couple of new freshmen who've moved into the top three. 

    Of course, this is only good news for tanking teams and others projected in the lottery. This field is starting to look a whole lot more attractive than we initially anticipated.  

    We went with the current NBA standings to determine the mock draft order and accounted for any previous trades that involved 2015 picks.

1. Minnesota Timberwolves: Jahlil Okafor, Duke, 6'11", PF/C, Freshman

1 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    Jahlil Okafor's consistent individual dominance and routine NBA post moves continue to fuel his credibility as the no-brainer No. 1 pick. 

    He went for 22 points and 17 boards against Notre Dame Wednesday night and 17 and 10 on Sunday over St. John's and Chris Obekpa, the No. 4 shot-blocker in the nation. 

    Okafor is just too big, agile and skilled down low, where he cradles the ball, separates and finishes over either shoulder. Averaging 18.7 points on 66.2 percent shooting, he's been practically impossible to stop one-on-one.

    "The skill set he has for his age isn't unprecedented, but it's been a long time since we've seen it," one scout told Bleacher Report's Jason King. "Even the guys that get there in the pros, most of them don't have it at 18. I think he's ahead of where Pat Ewing was as a freshman, offensively for sure."

    Okafor's defense is the only question mark. He just doesn't challenge as many shots as he should, given his size and wingspan. But it's not a big enough reason to pass and go in a different, more uncertain direction. 

    A positional clash with Nikola Pekovic shouldn't cause the Wolves to overthink here. Okafor is clearly the most talented prospect in the class, as well as the safest. An Okafor-Andrew Wiggins one-two punch could look awfully good in Minnesota down the road.

2. New York Knicks: D'Angelo Russell, Ohio State, 6'5", PG/SG, Freshman

2 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    Outside of Jahlil Okafor, nobody has been more believable than D'Angelo Russell, who's put on a few mesmerizing offensive shows lately that just might have moved the draft-stock needle. 

    His 33-point, seven-rebound, six-assist, zero-turnover line against Northwestern Jan. 22 was just awesome. Russell flat-out took over down the stretch, nailing a go-ahead step-back three-pointer and then another bomb two possessions later after knocking his man to the floor off an ankle-breaking crossover.

    He followed on Sunday with another masterpiece—22 points, 10 assists and six rebounds in a win over Indiana. Thursday night, he went for 18 points, 14 boards, six assists and zero turnovers without breaking a sweat in a blowout over Maryland.

    From pull-up jumpers and fallaways in the post to sneaky finishes and brilliant passes, Russell's skills are as sharp as the competitive edge he plays with. 

    With Karl-Anthony Towns getting so few touches and Emmanuel Mudiay sitting out (ankle) after only playing 10 games in China, Russell has capitalized with his convincing consistency and winning intangibles. 

    He's loaded with star power. We now rank Russell as our No. 2 prospect. And given his shooting stroke (44 percent from downtown), exceptional vision and basketball IQ, he'd fit nicely into Phil Jackson's triangle. 

3. Philadelphia 76ers: Stanley Johnson, Arizona, 6'7", SF, Freshman

3 of 30

    Ben Margot/Associated Press

    Though the Philadelphia 76ers could just as easily draft Emmanuel Mudiay or Karl-Anthony Towns, Stanley Johnson is just too good of a fit. And after the team took a few risks in Joel Embiid and Nerlens Noel the past couple of years, it might be a good idea to play it safe by selecting Johnson. 

    He's averaging 14.9 points and 6.9 rebounds on 40.7 percent shooting from downtown. Meanwhile, Mudiay isn't playing, and Towns isn't producing much offensively. 

    At 6'7", 245 pounds, Johnson is diesel yet smooth. He has a good-looking shooting stroke and a gentle floater in the second level, where he's making 51.8 percent of two-point jumpers, per Hoop-Math.

    Defensively, he projects as a versatile lockdown defender capable of guarding up to three positions. 

    Mudiay or Towns might offer more potential reward, but the Sixers could use a sure thing. There's just nothing not to like about Johnson.

4. Los Angeles Lakers: Emmanuel Mudiay, China, 6'5", PG, 1996

4 of 30

    Sam Forencich/Getty Images

    Emmanuel Mudiay would be an ideal fit in Los Angeles, where the Lakers could use a point guard and a little extra star power. 

    With John Wall-type size and burst, Mudiay's ceiling is as high as anyone's in the field. At 6'5", he's a scoring point guard with the willingness and ability to set the table for teammates, whether he's facilitating out of pick-and-rolls or driving and dishing to teammates. 

    He's been sitting out in China after injuring his ankle 10 games into the year, and it might have allowed others who are actually playing to make a move. 

    But there's no denying Mudiay's talent, which had him ranked as a consensus top-five recruit out of high school and a target for schools like Kentucky and Kansas, per 247Sports. (He originally chose to stay home at SMU before passing on college and going to China.) 

    Mudiay will certainly entertain top-three, if not No. 1, overall consideration, but the field has strengthened since his last actual game. Either way, he'd be a home run for the Lakers four picks deep.

5. Orlando Magic: Karl-Anthony Towns, Kentucky, 7'0", C, Freshman

5 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    This platoon system at Kentucky hasn't quite worked out in Karl-Anthony Towns' favor. He's scored fewer than 10 points in four of his last five games, and though the touches haven't been there, he's shooting just 51 percent inside the arc, a below-average number for a big man. 

    John Calipari even benched him during Kentucky's game against South Carolina on Saturday, as he played only 12 minutes. 

    "Look at Karl like he's my son, but I killed him today. It was too physical for him," Calipari told reporters after the game, via 247Sports' Jon Hale

    "I'd get nervous in the top five with him [Towns]. But he's worth drafting eighth or ninth," one scout told Bleacher Report's Jason King. "He could be an All-Star—or he could turn into Ed Davis."

    Towns still has major upside—arguably the most in the class when you consider his two-way versatility as a scorer, shooter, passer, rebounder and shot-blocker. There really isn't much he can't do. 

    But Towns is just a little further away than some of the other top guys, while his toughness remains a question. "The knock on Karl Towns in high school was he's a little bit soft at times. Calipari hinting at that in explaining why he's not playing more," tweeted DraftExpress' Jonathan Givony. 

    No. 5 overall seems like his absolute basement floor, and quite frankly, there's still a chance he could go in the top two. But with D'Angelo Russell and Stanley Johnson coming on, Towns will have something to prove down the stretch of his freshman season.

6. Indiana Pacers: Kristaps Porzingis, Latvia, 7'0", PF, 1995

6 of 30

    If there was ever a time to try to catch a glimpse of Kristaps Porzingis, it's now. He's currently in the zone, having scored at least 14 points in four straight games and in six of his last seven. 

    While the Dirk Nowitzki comparisons are a little much, they at least give you an idea of Porzingis' style of play. 

    At 7'0", he operates mostly away from the rim on offense, where his size, athleticism and ball skills fuel some unusually dangerous versatility. 

    Porzingis knocks down nearly one three-pointer per game (he's made 30 in 32 games) at a sharp 39 percent clip, which plays to his stretch or pick-and-pop potential. But he's also a threat to score one-on-one, whether he's separating for a shot in the mid-range or putting the ball on the floor. 

    At 220 pounds, he has some work to do in the weight room, but if you're the Indiana Pacers at No. 6, you draft him based on his top-five upside. 

7. Utah Jazz: Kevon Looney, UCLA, 6'9", SF/PF, Freshman

7 of 30

    Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

    Kevon Looney's offensive game has started to come around, and in the process, we've seen flashes of versatility and upside that are bound to have scouting departments buzzing. 

    He's hit six three-pointers over his last six games, three of which he double-doubled in. 

    With terrific instincts under the boards and promising ball skills on the perimeter, Looney has an inside-out package that screams NBA mismatch potential. 

    He needs to bulk up and improve his footwork in the post, but at 6'9", his ability to face the rim and score—not to mention control the glass—drives his ceiling to a height worth reaching on. 

    The Jazz could be losing Enes Kanter in restricted free agency, making Looney an obvious option for them to target in the lottery. 

8. Detroit Pistons: Mario Hezonja, Croatia, 6'8", SG/SF, 1995

8 of 30

    Mario Hezonja's minutes have fluctuated all season for Barcelona, and at the moment, they're down. But scouts have likely seen enough, whether it's been this year or at a previous showcase tournament or event, to realize his upside. 

    A spectacular athlete with 6'8" mismatch size for a wing, Hezonja has three-point range (44.1 percent in 11 Euroleague games) and the ball skills to put it on the floor and attack, whether it's off a screen or through a lane.

    His physical tools also show up at the defensive end, while his impressive passing ability reflects Hezonja's strong feel for the game. 

    He just might be a better fit in the NBA's open floor. Something tells me he's more ready than his numbers or playing time suggest. 

    At this stage, Hezonja is our top prospect on the board, and the Pistons just happen to desperately need a small forward. 

9. Sacramento Kings: Myles Turner, Texas, 6'11", PF/C, Freshman

9 of 30

    James Crisp/Associated Press

    Myles Turner isn't quite ready, but that shouldn't stop teams from chasing the upside and waiting for results.

    At 6'11", he's unusually polished on the perimeter, from spot-up shooting to separating in the mid-range and firing right over his man. He's hit 13 of 37 three-pointers and 42.2 percent of his two-point jumpers. 

    His defensive instincts from high school have also carried over, as he's blocking 2.8 shots per game in only 22.7 minutes. 

    At this stage, Turner just isn't comfortable or strong enough offensively with the ball down low. Only 27.3 percent of his shots come at the rim, an incredibly low number for a center or power forward. 

    Scouts have also been quick to point out his suspect mobility. "I don't like the way he runs. It's very awkward and labored," one told Bleacher Report's Jason King. 

    Depending on how much stock you put in the red flags, Turner could either be a value pick at No. 9 or a reach. 

    For what it's worth, his ability to stretch the floor should fit nicely alongside DeMarcus Cousins in Sacramento.

10. Boston Celtics: Willie Cauley-Stein, Kentucky, 7'0", C, Junior

10 of 30

    Joe Robbins/Getty Images

    Willie Cauley-Stein's up-and-down numbers shouldn't matter too much. At this point, there's little mystery regarding his game or outlook. 

    You target the 7-footer for his defensive versatility and rim protection, as well as his ability to impact games without needing touches in the offense. 

    For a general manager, the fact that Cauley-Stein isn't much of a threat to score shouldn't matter so long as you can maximize his strengths as a defender and finisher. 

    The Boston Celtics could use a little more above-the-rim bounce at the center position. Cauley-Stein would provide strong value 10 picks deep, given the safety cushion his physical tools and athleticism will provide. 

11. Atlanta Hawks (via Nets): Kelly Oubre, Kansas, 6'7", SF, Freshman

11 of 30

    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    We've seen mixed results from Kelly Oubre, but the good should ultimately outweigh the bad when it comes to long-term projections. Besides, with him playing on a veteran squad that shares the ball, we haven't seen much stability with regard to his minutes, touches and confidence. 

    At 6'7", he's a terrific athlete with a good-looking outside stroke (38 percent on three-pointers) and promising scoring instincts off the dribble. Prior to struggling against TCU and Texas the final week of January, he had averaged 14.2 points over his previous four games.

    An offensive weapon with defensive potential, Oubre just needs to build up his reps and overall basketball IQ. 

    The Atlanta Hawks could use a little more athleticism and firepower on the wing. Oubre might need to spend time in the NBA D-League his rookie year, but at 19 years old, his upside is worth chasing.

12. Denver Nuggets: Justise Winslow, Duke, 6'6", SF, Freshman

12 of 30

    Ellen Ozier/Associated Press

    Justise Winslow finally broke out of what was an ugly offensive slump, hitting three of four triples against Notre Dame Wednesday night.

    He needed it. Winslow went scoreless in 10 minutes against St. John's Sunday and combined for just 12 points over his previous three games. 

    It's just a reminder that his ball skills are behind his defense and athleticism, both of which are top-shelf. 

    The good news is that his shooting stroke actually looks smooth. He's making 1.3 threes per game at a respectable 37.3 percent clip. Winslow just doesn't have an in-between game off the dribble, as he's converted only five two-point jumpers all season, per Hoop-Math.

    Regardless, Winslow's energy and motor should hold NBA value. He excels in areas of the game you just can't teach. If he can improve in the areas you can, the Denver Nuggets would get a steal here at No. 12.

13. Oklahoma City Thunder: Jerian Grant, Notre Dame, 6'5", PG, Senior

13 of 30

    Grant Halverson/Getty Images

    Jerian Grant's eruption against Duke Wednesday night just might have moved the needle. He was sensational, finishing with 23 points and 12 assists while leading the Irish to a win down the stretch. 

    More than anything else, it's Grant's vision and facilitating instincts that stand out, whether he's driving and dishing or finding his teammates off ball screens and pick-and-rolls. He's also currently tied for No. 10 in the country in assist-to-turnover ratio, per DraftExpress, and No. 8 in pure point rating, per RealGM.com.

    At 6'5", Grant's athleticism and shot-making ability also translate to 17.4 points per game and a ridiculous 62.4 percent from two-point range. 

    It's rare that a senior earns lottery consideration, but it's impossible to write off Grant's breakout. 

    The Oklahoma City Thunder might be losing Reggie Jackson to restricted free agency. Grant, whose passing ability might hold more value to the lineup, could be viewed as a cheap replacement in the backcourt. And at 22 years old (23 in October), there's a chance he could be ready to roll right away.

14. Houston Rockets (via Pelicans): Frank Kaminsky, Wisconsin, 7'0", C, Senior

14 of 30

    Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

    Whether or not you're buying into the upside, Frank Kaminsky has a skill set that translates to the NBA level. 

    At 7'0", he's knocking down 1.1 three-pointers per game at a 40.4 percent clip, playing the same stretch and pick-and-pop role he'll likely fill as an NBA pro. 

    Kaminsky's post game has also come a long way. He has the footwork to face up and attack or separate back to the basket, along with the touch to convert from a number of different angles. 

    He currently leads the country in player efficiency rating, averaging 17.2 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.7 blocks on 53.8 percent shooting, per RealGM.com.

    The Houston Rockets lack depth at the 5, as well as a big man who can consistently knock down three-point shots. At the very least, Kaminsky should thrive as a backup center for years to come.

15. Charlotte Hornets: Devin Booker, Kentucky, 6'6", SG, Freshman

15 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    Devin Booker has been arguably Kentucky's steadiest player all year. And though the obvious draw is his elite outside stroke—Booker shoots 50 percent from downtown on two three-point makes per game—he brings more to the table than just a jumper. 

    Currently Kentucky's second-leading scorer despite rarely hunting for shots, Booker can put the ball in the hole without needing to dribble or create. He does an excellent job of finishing the plays that find him in the offense, whether it's off a spot-up, a cut, curl or fast break. 

    "I love Booker. You could make an argument that he's the third-best shooting guard in the draft," one scout told Bleacher Report's Jason King. 

    Booker's game doesn't scream upside, but his J.J. Redick-type ceiling should justify late-lottery to mid-first-round looks. 

    The Charlotte Hornets could use a sniper and overall high-IQ presence like Booker on the wing.

16. Philadelphia 76ers (via Heat): Bobby Portis, Arkansas, 6'10", PF, Sophomore

16 of 30

    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Bobby Portis showed promise last year, and he's followed through as a sophomore, improving in a couple of different areas. 

    He's averaging 17.5 points and 8.5 boards on 56.1 percent shooting, up from the 12.3 points and 6.8 boards on 50.9 percent shooting from last season. 

    So far, Portis has double-doubled in five of Arkansas' first seven conference games.

    He makes up for a lack of explosiveness with skill and finesse, whether he's separating in the post or knocking down mid-to-long-range jump shots (38.7 percent on two-point jumpers, 9-of-16 from downtown).

    At 6'10" with long arms and refined ball skills, Portis ultimately aces the NBA power forward eye test. 

    At No. 16, the Sixers are just looking for the best player available. It would be hard to argue against Portis anywhere outside the lottery.

17. Milwaukee Bucks: Montrezl Harrell, Louisville, 6'8", PF, Junior

17 of 30

    H. Rumph Jr./Associated Press

    With defenses more focused on stopping him, Montrezl Harrell's numbers have been down in conference play (13.0 points, 8.2 rebounds).

    He's still pretty much limited to interior scoring and putbacks for offense, without a reliable outside shot or much polish in the post. 

    But nothing can take away from his blend of power, athleticism and intensity, which translates to easy buckets, physical defense and activity on the glass. 

    Now in his third year, it's a little disappointing to see Harrell continue to struggle so badly with touch (60.7 percent from the line, 33.8 percent on two-point jumpers). And that's why teams aren't likely to reach on Harrell in the top 10. 

    But outside the lottery, his motor and explosiveness should hold NBA value in an energizer role up front.

18. Phoenix Suns: Christian Wood, UNLV, 6'11", PF, Sophomore

18 of 30

    Ethan Miller/Getty Images

    Christian Wood should be one of the greater risk-reward options in the field. 

    At 6'11", he's a big-time athlete who gets up high above the rim. And he's actually at his best facing up in space, where he has the foot speed and agility to attack and separate from slower big men.

    Wood also pulls in 9.5 boards and blocks 2.6 shots per game. He's even flashed the occasional three-ball, hitting 16 so far on the year. 

    However, Wood is still raw offensively, and at 220 pounds, he struggles to finish through or after contact down low. 

    He has lottery-type upside if he can make it work, given the mismatch his inside-out versatility could create for a forward who is nearly 7 feet tall. Don't be surprised if someone gambles in Round 1.

    Wood would make plenty of sense for a team that likes to run, and the Suns could even use a backup 4 behind Markieff Morris.

19. Chicago Bulls (via Cavs): Delon Wright, Utah, 6'5", PG, Senior

19 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    Delon Wright has found a groove as of late, particularly in the passing game, where he's been carving up defenses as a facilitator.

    He's averaging 7.2 assists through seven Pac-12 contests. His ability to control the pace and set the table for teammates is on point. 

    Wright's scoring numbers haven't been overwhelming, but he's already matched his three-point total (12) from last season, while his field-goal percentage remains strong for a guard at 53.9 percent. 

    He's also racking up at least 2.3 steals per game for the second straight year. 

    Wright doesn't project as anything more than a defensive-minded backup, but as a mid-to-late first-round pick, that's just what a team like the Chicago Bulls could be targeting.

20. Dallas Mavericks: Trey Lyles, Kentucky, 6'10", PF, Freshman

20 of 30

    James Crisp/Associated Press

    The Dallas Mavericks frontcourt lacks serious depth. And though his ceiling might be limited, Trey Lyles' smooth offensive game appears built for the pros. 

    At 6'10", he has power forward size and a money mid-range jumper. Lyles has a natural stroke and quick release, whether he's catching and shooting or pulling up off a dribble. 

    He'll need to bulk up, but Lyles is a tough face-up cover for most forwards his size. And he's a high-IQ guy, which plays to his promising role-player potential. 

    "The kid is really, really good. Out of the Kentucky group, you could make the argument for taking Trey Lyles over [Willie] Cauley-Stein," one scout told Bleacher Report's Jason King.

    Lyles would be racking up double-doubles for any school other than Kentucky. He's worthy of first-round looks anywhere outside the top 10.

21. San Antonio Spurs: Caris LeVert, Michigan, 6'7", SG, Junior

21 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    If Caris LeVert's recovery from a season-ending foot injury goes well, the San Antonio Spurs could be getting some value here late in Round 1. 

    He was averaging 14.9 points per game while leading Michigan in assists (3.7) before going down. At 6'7", LeVert offers loads of playmaking versatility along with a reliable jumper he's used to connect on at least 40 percent of his threes over his past two seasons. 

    Had he not gotten hurt, he'd be a top-20 option. Stealing LeVert here would be a very Spurs-like move.

22. Cleveland Cavaliers (via Bulls): Sam Dekker, Wisconsin, 6'9", SF, Junior

22 of 30

    Andy Manis/Associated Press

    Sam Dekker would seem like an ideal option for a team that already has established scorers and playmakers like the Cleveland Cavaliers. 

    His strengths revolve around his basketball IQ more than anything else. Though not particularly great in any one area of the game, he's capable in many, and he picks his spots wisely. 

    A decent shooter, good passer and physical mismatch for most small forwards, Dekker projects as a classic, do-it-all role player.

    A lottery team that couldn't surround him with talent wouldn't be smart to take him. But he makes sense as a target for Cleveland, especially with Shawn Marion on the way out.

23. Washington Wizards: Tyus Jones, Duke, 6'1", PG, Freshman

23 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    The Washington Wizards should be on the lookout for John Wall's next backup, a label that has Tyus Jones' name written all over it. 

    A lack of strength and athleticism limits his upside, but Jones is tough as nails. He's an excellent decision-maker, creative setup man (five assists per game sharing the ball with Quinn Cook) and capable outside shooter (36.7 percent from downtown). 

    Though it's not a requirement in today's NBA, he's what you'd call a true, natural point guard. 

    Jones has been terrific over Duke's past few games—at least offensively. He went for 22 points against Pittsburgh on January 19, 22 against St. John's on Sunday and 14 against Notre Dame Wednesday night. 

    Jones would be better draft option for a team that already has a 30-minute-per-game floor general. 

24. Toronto Raptors: Cliff Alexander, Kansas, 6'8", PF, Freshman

24 of 30

    Ed Zurga/Associated Press

    Cliff Alexander has had a couple of big-time performances for Kansas late in January. He went for 13 points and 13 boards in a win over Oklahoma January 19, and 15 points and nine boards in a win over Texas last Saturday. 

    Though fairly limited offensively—84.6 percent of his two-point jumpers are assisted—Alexander's athleticism, motor and intensity translate to offensive rebounds and easy buckets. 

    At this stage in his development, he's an energizer—a physical presence inside who cleans up messes and keeps plays alive. 

    Teams might be hesitant to reach on Alexander, who's 6'8" without much skill. But there's still plenty of value in what he brings to the table if you can take him for what he is. 

25. Los Angeles Lakers (via Houston): Robert Upshaw, 7'0", C, 1994

25 of 30

    Rick Bowmer/Associated Press

    With their second first-round pick, the Los Angeles Lakers might want to take a chance on Robert Upshaw, who was the nation's leading shot-blocker before getting dismissed from Washington this week. The fact that he'd already been dismissed from Fresno State back in 2013 raises the caution alert even higher. 

    According to ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman, he'd failed multiple drug tests at both schools.

    If only Upshaw hadn't been so talented, he'd likely have already been off the radar. But at 7'0" with a strong frame and phenomenal rim-protection instincts, he offers something that's valued heavily in the pros. 

    According to Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski, Upshaw could test his luck in the D-League, just as P.J. Hairston did last season after getting booted from North Carolina. And as we now know, Hairston still went in the first round in 2014. 

    The Lakers will be desperate for talent by June. They could be one of the few teams who are willing to risk bringing in Upshaw.

26. Boston Celtics (via Clippers): Jake Layman, Maryland, 6'9", SF/PF, Junior

26 of 30

    Patrick Semansky/Associated Press

    Jake Layman has emerged as a legitimate first-round prospect after tightening up his offensive game. He's shooting 58.3 percent on two-pointers, up from 44.1 percent last year, and 40.3 percent on threes, a career best. 

    His rebounding numbers have also improved dramatically, as he's bringing in 1.9 more per game while playing nearly three minutes fewer. 

    Layman appears to have bulked up during the summer to go with his 6'9" height and now looks the part of a stretch NBA forward. 

    Outside of James Young, the Celtics don't have any appealing wings. Layman might project more as role player on paper, but so did Chandler Parsons. 

27. Portland Trail Blazers: R.J. Hunter, Georgia State, 6'5", SG, Junior

27 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    I'm not sure the Trail Blazers would view R.J. Hunter as a replacement for Wesley Matthews, but if the veteran leaves in free agency, it couldn't hurt to target another good shooter. 

    Hunter actually hasn't shot the ball particularly well, but after sinking 100 three-pointers as a sophomore and averaging 19.9 points this season, there's no doubting his ability to put the ball in the hole. 

    He even expanded his game this year—with defenses constantly locked in on him, he's become much more effective as a passer, having already dished out 13 more assists than he did all of last season. 

    Chances are he'll be a lot more efficient as a No. 4 or No. 5 option in the pros, as opposed to being the top gun he is now. 

28. Memphis Grizzlies: Terry Rozier, Louisville, 6'1", PG/SG, Sophomore

28 of 30

    Keith Srakocic/Associated Press

    A physical defender and strong rebounder (5.3 per game) for a guard, Terry Rozier could be a nice fit in Memphis for a team that lacks athleticism and youth in the backcourt. 

    Rozier is playing some of the best ball of his career, averaging 21.4 points over his last five games. 

    And we're starting to see some of the playmaking lately we didn't see early on in the year. Despite sharing the rock with Chris Jones, he's gone for at least five assists in three of his last five games. And he's been on fire from behind the arc, having made 11 of his last 19 three-point attempts. 

    Though he's still more of an undersized scorer than a point guard, at this stage in the draft, you take Rozier for his obvious talent and hope he figures out the rest. Eric Bledsoe did—a combo guard who entered the league with similar questions about his role and position. 

29. Brooklyn Nets (via Hawks): Damian Jones, Vanderbilt, 6'10", PF, Sophomore

29 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    Damian Jones is more of a "potential" pick, but if he hits, the Brooklyn Nets will have gotten a steal a few years down the road. 

    It's still up in the air whether Jones will test his draft luck this June, but he's having a breakout season statistically, and as ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman points out, NBA folks are intrigued.

    He's averaging 15.6 points, 7.0 boards and 1.8 blocks for Vanderbilt. And he's been fairly consistent, having scored in double figures in every game but one. 

    An explosive athlete who can finish from high above the rim, Jones has flashed post moves and touch that fuel some enticing long-term upside. 

    But the key phrase is long term. Jones is a project—just one that could be worth investing in as a fall-back option this late.

30. Golden State Warriors: Jordan Mickey, LSU, 6'8", PF, Sophomore

30 of 30

    USA TODAY Sports

    There are questions about how Jordan Mickey's game might translate. He's just 6'8" and isn't a particularly reliable shooter. But as the nation's leading shot-blocker (now that Washington's Robert Upshaw has been dismissed), someone is bound to gamble on his instincts.

    Mickey averages 15.9 points, 10.4 rebounds and 3.7 blocks per game. It's arguably the best stat line in college hoops that nobody talks about.

    He's a terrific athlete with great hands and an even better feel for the game.

    Just as they did with Draymond Green, who at 6'7" didn't make sense to most teams on paper, the Warriors could take a chance on Mickey—an undersized big man with an unusually strong nose for the ball. 

    Developing the jumper would be huge, but Mickey should still thrive in a role that allows him to play to his strengths as an energizer. 

    Stats courtesy of Hoop-Math and RealGM.com.