Some teams are much further along than others in that endeavor, although a few squads near the bottom of the NBA standings got off to good starts on that front with the draft on Thursday evening.
On the flip side, other teams made questionable decisions on the surface. That being said, it's a wait-and-see game as far as how these picks eventually turn out.
Here's a look at the NBA draft results, a full list of team grades and closer looks at three teams: two in the former category and one in the latter.
NBA Draft Results
NBA Draft Grades
Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs.
Atlanta Hawks, Detroit Pistons, Houston Rockets, New Orleans Pelicans, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder and Utah Jazz.
Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, Portland Trail Blazers and Washington Wizards.
Miami Heat and Toronto Raptors.
Orlando Magic and Memphis Grizzlies
The story is the same for both squads: Orlando and Memphis are rebuilding teams who need to form strong identities moving forward. They took big steps toward that goal with their first- and second-round picks.
Orlando selected Texas center Mohamed Bamba and Tulane forward Melvin Frazier. The 6'11" Bamba has a 7'10" wingspan and blocked 3.7 shots per game in his one season in school, and he had 10.5 rebounds per contest. Frazier, who had two steals per game over his final two seasons, has drawn comparisons to San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard, who is one of the best defenders in the game.
The Grizzlies selected Michigan State forward Jaren Jackson Jr. with the fourth overall pick, and it wouldn't be surprising to see him emerge as the draft's best player years down the line. He's 6'11" with a 7'5" wingspan and blocked 3.0 shots per game despite playing just 21.8 minutes per night. Jackson can also stick the three-pointer, as evidenced by his 39.6 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
In the second round, the Grizz took a tough point guard in West Virginia's Jevon Carter, who was the subject of much praise during draft week, including this note from Adam Fromal of Bleacher Report:
Ultimately, it's clear what both teams are doing, and that's forming a solid defensive identity with potential perennial All-Stars as future centerpieces.
This grade is less of a commentary on the players the Philadelphia 76ers did obtain (in particular, Texas Tech guard Zhaire Smith has intriguing potential) and more on what could have been.
In summary, they picked two of the draft's best three-and-D prospects (Villanova wing Mikal Bridges and Creighton guard Khyri Thomas) and traded both of them away. Both would have been great fits for the 76ers, who need some more defensive help off the bench and on the wing.
Bridges is a two-time NCAA national champion who posted 17.7 points in his final season in school. He also shot no worse than 51.4 percent from the field in any of his three years at Villanova and hit 43.5 percent of his three-pointers last season. Bridges was also the co-Big East Defensive Player of the Year for the 2016-17 season.
Thomas shared that award with Bridges (and ex-Villanova guard Josh Hart) before winning it by himself this past season thanks in part to his 1.7 steals per game, which ranked third in the conference. On offense, Thomas made 53.8 percent of his shots and 41.1 percent from downtown. The former mark ranked first in the Big East.
Although Thomas is a shade under 6'4" in shoes, he has a wingspan of 6'10½, which should help on the defensive end in the pros.
With NBA teams more dependent on the three-pointer year after year, Bridges and Thomas will be excellent fits for today's league. But they'll be in Phoenix and Detroit, respectively.