2020 NBA Mock Draft: Latest Predictions for 1st-Round Prospects

Jake RillSenior Analyst IIIMay 26, 2020

Villanova forward Saddiq Bey (41) in action during an NCAA college basketball game against Providence, Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020, in Philadelphia, Pa. (AP Photo/Laurence Kesterson)
Laurence Kesterson/Associated Press

The beginning of the 2020 NBA draft has the potential to be more unpredictable than last year's, as well as many others that have come before it.

While it's often clear which player is going to be selected with the No. 1 overall pick (such as Zion Williamson in 2019), this year's draft has numerous players who could be the first off the board, including Anthony Edwards, James Wiseman and LaMelo Ball.

However, fans may have to wait beyond June to see the excitement unfold. With the 2019-20 season still suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic, it remains unclear if the draft will still be held next month until a decision is made on whether to resume the season.

Here's a mock for the first round of this year's draft, followed by a closer look at several intriguing prospects from the class.


NBA Mock Draft, 1st Round

1. Golden State Warriors: Anthony Edwards, SG, Georgia

2. Cleveland Cavaliers: James Wiseman, C, Memphis

3. Minnesota Timberwolves: LaMelo Ball, PG, Illawarra Hawks

4. Atlanta Hawks: Onyeka Okongwu, PF/C, USC

5. Detroit Pistons: Obi Toppin, PF, Dayton

6. New York Knicks: Killian Hayes, PG, Ratiopharm Ulm

7. Chicago Bulls: Cole Anthony, PG, North Carolina

8. Charlotte Hornets: Deni Avdija, F, Maccabi Tel Aviv

9. Washington Wizards: Isaac Okoro, SF, Auburn

10. Phoenix Suns: Tyrese Haliburton, PG, Iowa State

11. San Antonio Spurs: RJ Hampton, SG, New Zealand Breakers

12. Sacramento Kings: Tyrese Maxey, SG, Kentucky

13. New Orleans Pelicans: Nico Mannion, PG, Arizona

14. Portland Trail Blazers: Devin Vassell, SF, Florida State

15. Orlando Magic: Saddiq Bey, SF, Villanova

16. Minnesota Timberwolves (via Brooklyn Nets): Precious Achiuwa, PF/C, Memphis

17. Boston Celtics (via Memphis Grizzlies): Patrick Williams, PF, Florida State

18. Dallas Mavericks: Isaiah Stewart, C, Washington

19. Milwaukee Bucks (via Indiana Pacers): Theo Maledon, PG, ASVEL

20. Brooklyn Nets (via Philadelphia 76ers): Jaden McDaniels, SF/PF, Washington

21. Denver Nuggets (via Houston Rockets): Josh Green, SG, Arizona

22. Philadelphia 76ers (via Oklahoma City Thunder): Jalen Smith, PF, Maryland

23. Miami Heat: Vernon Carey Jr., PF/C, Duke

24. Utah Jazz: Aaron Nesmith, SF, Vanderbilt

25. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Denver Nuggets): Aleksej Pokusevski, PF, Olympiacos

26. Boston Celtics: Leandro Bolmaro, SF, FC Barcelona

27. New York Knicks (via Los Angeles Clippers): Tre Jones, PG, Duke

28. Toronto Raptors: Xavier Tillman, PF, Michigan State

29. Los Angeles Lakers: Kira Lewis Jr., PG, Alabama

30. Boston Celtics (via Milwaukee Bucks): Jahmi'us Ramsey, SG, Texas Tech


Saddiq Bey, SF, Villanova

During his freshman season at Villanova in 2018-19, Saddiq Bey showed flashes of being a great shooter. This past season, he broke out in impressive fashion, helping him move up NBA draft big boards and become a more intriguing prospect for teams to consider in the first round.

The 21-year-old averaged 16.1 points over 31 games while shooting 47.7 percent from the field, 45.1 percent from 3-point range and 76.9 percent from the free-throw line. All those stats were improved from his freshman season, and he showed growth that The Athletic's Sam Vecenie called "markedly impressive."

"He's basically automatic if you give him a clean look off the catch," Vecenie wrote. "His stroke is pure, his release is clean and the ball gets terrific rotation. He's an NBA-level shooter right now off the catch."

A 6'8" forward who also plays solid defense, the Villanova product should be selected with a late lottery pick or shortly after. One potential fit could be the Magic, who should be one of the first teams on the clock after the lottery portion of the opening round.

Orlando already has a talented young core, and adding Bey on the wing could help it take another step forward as soon as next season.


Precious Achiuwa, PF/C, Memphis

Karen Pulfer Focht/Associated Press

There are some areas of Precious Achiuwa's game that are going to need to improve for him to be a standout NBA player. But the 20-year-old forward has a ton of potential and should be a defensive standout as he continues to improve offensively in the years to come.

In his lone season at Memphis, he averaged 15.8 points and 10.8 rebounds in 31 games while shooting 49.3 percent from the field. He also averaged 1.9 blocks and 1.1 steals per game, showcasing the strong defensive skills that should help him have some early success in the NBA.

"Elite physical profile and ideal defensive versatility," ESPN's Mike Schmitz wrote in his scouting report of Achiuwa. "Has the strength (234 pounds) and standing reach (9-1.5) to slide all the way up to the center spot in small lineups. Explosive above the rim in space. Light on his feet. Long arms (7-2 wingspan), big hands."

The Timberwolves have a pair of first-round picks, and while they could take a top scoring guard with their first selection (perhaps Ball), they could look to add a post player near the middle of the round.

If Minnesota comes away with Ball and Achiuwa, it would be a successful draft for a team that has an exciting core to build around for the future.


Vernon Carey Jr., PF/C, Duke

Gerry Broome/Associated Press

Coming from one of the most illustrious programs in college basketball, Vernon Carey Jr. should help Duke continue its streak of having at least one player selected in the first round of the NBA draft. The last time the Blue Devils didn't have a player go in the opening round was 2008.

Carey averaged 17.8 points and 8.8 rebounds in 31 games in his lone season at Duke, shooting 57.7 percent from the field.

In his scouting report, The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor noted the 6'10" forward lacks some explosiveness and fundamentals, but he praised his inside game.

"Imposing post scorer," he wrote. "He's good at establishing position and has slick footwork on his power moves; he also draws a ton of fouls."

While Carey should be drafted in the first round, it may not happen until the later picks. The Heat already have one strong frontcourt player in Bam Adebayo but could add the 19-year-old, who may help fill the void if Miami loses Derrick Jones Jr. in free agency.