NBA Draft 2020: Updated 1st-Round Mock Draft as Regular Season Draws to a Close

Maurice Bobb@@ReeseReportFeatured ColumnistAugust 12, 2020

LaMelo Ball of the Illawarra Hawks carries the ball up during their game against the Sydney Kings in the Australian Basketball League in Sydney, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)
Rick Rycroft/Associated Press

With the seeding games drawing to a close, it's safe to say that the NBA restart has been a rousing success.

There were a few hiccups in the beginning, of course, but since then, teams have adjusted well to playing in the bubble and the games have not only felt somewhat normal, they've been wildly entertaining.

Some players have even found a way to flourish in Orlando.

Seriously, who saw players like Bol Bol, Michael Porter Jr. or T.J. Warren playing as well as they have?

And Devin Booker was already a star, but in the bubble, he's launched himself into another orbit.

The first-time All Star guard out of Kentucky is now officially a superstar.

Booker has the Phoenix Suns on a seven-game winning streak and threatening to make the playoffs.

Whether or not the Suns or Memphis Grizzlies or Portland Trail Blazers or San Antonio Spurs finish with the No. 8 seed, basketball is back in full force.

That means all eyes are on the postseason and the upcoming draft.

Depending on what mock board was reviewed, prospects like Anthony Edwards, James Wiseman and LaMelo Ball have taken turns all summer as the presumptive No. 1 overall pick.

There's still plenty of time from now until Oct. 16 for teams to compare notes within their respective organizations on what player to select, but here's the latest look at the first round.


2020 NBA Mock Draft

1. Golden State Warriors: LaMelo Ball, PG, Illawarra Hawks

2. Cleveland Cavaliers: Anthony Edwards, SG, Georgia

3. Minnesota Timberwolves: Obi Toppin, PF, Dayton

4. Atlanta Hawks: James Wiseman, C, Memphis

5. Detroit Pistons: Tyrese Haliburton, PG, Iowa State

6. New York Knicks: Isaac Okoro, SF, Auburn

7. Chicago Bulls: Deni Avdija, SF, Maccabi Tel Aviv

8. Charlotte Hornets: Onyeka Okongwu, PF/C, USC

9. Washington Wizards: Devin Vassell, SG/SF, Florida State

10. Phoenix Suns: Cole Anthony, PG, North Carolina

11. San Antonio Spurs: Killian Hayes, PG, Ratiopharm Ulm

12. Sacramento Kings: Aaron Nesmith, SF, Vanderbilt

13. New Orleans Pelicans: RJ Hampton, SG, New Zealand Breakers

14. Portland Trail Blazers: Saddiq Bey, SF, Villanova

15. Orlando Magic: Tyrese Maxey, SG, Kentucky

16. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Brooklyn): Kira Lewis Jr., PG, Alabama

17. Boston Celtics (from Memphis): Precious Achiuwa, PF/C, Memphis

18. Dallas Mavericks: Theo Maledon, PG, ASVEL

19. Milwaukee Bucks (from Indiana): Jahmi'us Ramsey, SG, Texas Tech

20. Brooklyn Nets (from Philadelphia): Jaden McDaniels, SF, Washington

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

22. Philadelphia 76ers (from Oklahoma City): Tyrell Terry, PG, Stanford

23. Miami Heat: Tre Jones, PG, Duke

24. Utah Jazz: Jalen Smith, PF/C, Maryland

25. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Denver): Patrick Williams, SF, Florida State

26. Boston Celtics: Aleksej Pokusevski, PF, Olympiacos B

27. New York Knicks (from Los Angeles Clippers): Isaiah Stewart, C, Washington

28. Toronto Raptors: Nico Mannion, PG, Arizona

29. Los Angeles Lakers: Devon Dotson, PG, Kansas

30. Boston Celtics (from Milwaukee): Daniel Oturu, C, Minnesota


Why LaMelo Ball Goes No. 1

Let's face it, there is no clear cut No. 1 overall prospect in this draft.

Zion Williamson is not coming back to walk through that door.

Now that that's out of the way, here's the thing organizations will like put a premium on: potential.

That's right, pure, unadulterated, unknowable, fingers crossed potential.

Obi Toppin is literally jumping off the page when it comes to athleticism, but he's at or near his ceiling.

James Wiseman is a wildcard and Anthony Edwards could either be the next Donovan Mitchell or, not.

But LaMelo Ball is still on the incline.

At 6'7", 190 pounds, the 18-year old point guard is still coming into his own and where he's at is already impressive.

in 12 games with the National Basketball League's Illawarra Hawks, he showed up and showed out, averaging 17.0 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.8 assists.

Pros: he's crafty, he can lead a team, he can make the right decisions, he can handle the spotlight and the pressure that comes with it, he can make almost every pass and he dribbles like he has the ball on a string.

Cons: he really needs to work on his outside shooting, especially from beyond the arc, his defense is speculative at best and yes, he comes with a huge, heaping pile of his father, LaVar.

There are always risks when picking this high, but there's one thing that separates Ball from the rest of the pack: star power.

This kid has the makings to be a real star in the NBA, given the right team and situation.

On paper, that appears to be the New York Knicks.

The Knicks desperately need a star and no one in this draft fills that need quite like Ball.

He was made for the bright lights of New York and based on his father's comments, he wants to be there.

The only thing left for team president Leon Rose to do is find a way to get him there.


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