James Wiseman Picked by 20 of 35 Polled NBA Execs to Go No. 1 in 2020 NBA Draft

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2020

Memphis' James Wiseman (32) is congratulated between plays in an NCAA college basketball game against University of Illinois-Chicago Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Karen Pulfer Focht)
Karen Pulfer Focht/Associated Press

The 2020 NBA draft has more uncertainty at the top than most years, but former Memphis center James Wiseman is apparently a favorite among executives around the league.

According to Jeff Goodman of Stadium, 20 of 35 NBA executives polled said Wiseman should be the No. 1 pick in the draft.

Stadium @Stadium

According to a poll of 35 NBA Execs, @GoodmanHoops found that over half believe James Wiseman will be this year's top #NBADraft pick. He asked @BigTicket_JW for his reaction... 🔊⬆️ https://t.co/ExSeHmMr7j

Ten executives said they would take Georgia guard Anthony Edwards, four picked Illawarra Hawks guard LaMelo Ball and one chose Dayton forward Obi Toppin.

Wiseman told Goodman he appreciates the praise but said it doesn't matter where he is picked.

"I really don't care about the No. 1 spot, to be honest. ... I just want to go to a team that I can fit the most and be successful," Wiseman said.

He is somewhat of an unknown commodity heading into the draft considering he played just three collegiate games. He was suspended by the NCAA for receiving impermissible benefits and then left school to focus on the NBA draft.

The 7'1" center was an exciting player when on the court, averaging 19.7 points, 10.7 rebounds and 3.0 blocks per game. He ranked No. 1 in 247Sports' composite rankings in the 2019 recruiting class.

Even with his upside, there's no consensus about which prospect should be the top pick this year.

Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman listed Ball as the No. 1 player in the class on his latest big board while ranking Wiseman at No. 12.

According to Jonathan Givony of ESPN, Edwards is the best prospect.

Unlike last season, when Zion Williamson was the clear top pick, followed by Ja Morant and RJ Barrett, this year's draft should feature a lot more drama right away.