2020 NBA Mock Draft: Latest Top Prospects' Stock Watch and 1st-Round Predictions

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistOctober 2, 2020

Georgia's Anthony Edwards dribbles while gesturing to teammates during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Missouri on Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020, in Columbia, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Jeff Roberson/Associated Press

NBA draft boards are never static—not even in this socially distanced predraft process.

With ample time to review, update or even scrap and start over scouting reports, teams continue moving prospects up and down their list of preferred targets.

After running through our mock first round, we'll examine expert mocks and the latest draft buzz to see which prospects are climbing and which are trending the wrong direction.


2020 NBA Mock Draft

1. Minnesota Timberwolves: LaMelo Ball, PG/SG, Illawarra Hawks

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

3. Charlotte Hornets: James Wiseman, C, Memphis

4. Chicago Bulls: Tyrese Haliburton, PG, Iowa State

5. Cleveland Cavaliers: Deni Avdija, SF/PF, Maccabi Tel Aviv

6. Atlanta Hawks: Devin Vassell, SF, Florida State

7. Detroit Pistons: Onyeka Okongwu, PF/C, USC

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

9. Washington Wizards: Isaac Okoro, SF/PF, Auburn

10. Phoenix Suns: Obi Toppin, PF/C, Dayton

11. San Antonio Spurs: Aaron Nesmith, SF, Vanderbilt

12. Sacramento Kings: Patrick Williams, PF, Florida State

13. New Orleans Pelicans: Jalen Smith, PF/C, Maryland

14. Boston Celtics (via Memphis Grizzlies): RJ Hampton, SG, New Zealand Breakers

15. Orlando Magic: Kira Lewis Jr., PG, Alabama

16. Portland Trail Blazers: Josh Green, SG, Arizona

17. Minnesota Timberwolves (via Brooklyn Nets): Cole Anthony, PG, North Carolina

18. Dallas Mavericks: Aleksej Pokusevski, PF, Olympiacos B

19. Brooklyn Nets (via Philadelphia 76ers): Tyrese Maxey, SG, Kentucky

20. Miami Heat: Precious Achiuwa, PF/C, Memphis

21. Philadelphia 76ers (via Oklahoma City Thunder): Tyrell Terry, PG, Stanford

22. Denver Nuggets (via Houston Rockets): Grant Riller, PG/SG, Charleston

23. Utah Jazz: Saddiq Bey, SF/PF, Villanova

24. Milwaukee Bucks (via Indiana Pacers): Leandro Bolmaro, SG/SF, Barcelona

25. Oklahoma City Thunder (via Denver Nuggets): Zeke Nnaji, C, Arizona

26. Boston Celtics: Jaden McDaniels, SF/PF, Washington

27. New York Knicks (via Los Angeles Clippers): Jahmi'us Ramsey, SG, Texas Tech

28. Los Angeles Lakers: Cassius Winston, PG, Michigan State

29. Toronto Raptors: Theo Maledon, PG, ASVEL

30. Boston Celtics (via Milwaukee Bucks): Xavier Tillman, PF/C, Michigan State


NBA Draft Prospects' Stock Watch

Stock Up: Aleksej Pokusevski, PF, Olympiacos B

Pokusevski is the draft's biggest mystery, in more ways than one.

From a literal standpoint, the 18-year-old stands 7'0" tall, which makes the flashes of high-level perimeter skill all the more encouraging. His 205-pound frame needs filling out, and he could get pushed around by NBA defenders until it does, but one benefit of not having the extra bulk is fluid athleticism seldom seen in 7-footers.

Then, there's the fact that he's been playing in Greece's second division, so there's little evidence of how his game can level up against Association-quality competition. He's more exciting in theory than perhaps reality at this point, though in a draft with as many question marks as this, there might be more interest in his boom possibility than there is worry of a potential bust.

"Pop his tape and you'll see a 7-foot, 205-pound rail who needs serious physical maturation—but also a fluid athlete who can run the floor, shoot it and defend," CBS Sports' Kyle Boone wrote. "The blend of his size, skill and upside is All-Star caliber if he can put it together."


Stock Down: Anthony Edwards, SG, Georgia

While Edwards occupies the No. 2 slot on this mock draft board and usually lands among the top three selections on any mock, NBA decision-makers might be less enthusiastic about his outlook than it seems.

Edwards believers will gravitate toward his NBA-ready build, elite explosiveness and advanced shot-making manuevers. His skeptics, though, could struggle to get past his inefficiencies (40.2/29.4/77.2 shooting slash) and failure to substantially impact a Georgia team that went just 16-16 on the season.

"Teams are worried about Edwards' drive and enthusiasm for winning, and according to a source, the Golden State Warriors aren't a likely landing spot due to these concerns," B/R's Jonathan Wasserman reported. "... Scouts and executives have mentioned that his teams haven't won at any level, and that he even forgets plays and actions."

The 19-year-old is a work in progress, so teams will have to decide whether the potential payoff is worth the elbow grease it will take to get there.


Stock Up: RJ Hampton, SG, New Zealand Breakers

Hampton's decision to bypass the college game and start his professional career overseas brought about a big jump in competition. Perhaps predictably, his stat sheet suffered. Before a hip injury ended his run, he made 15 appearances and shot just 40.7 percent from the field, 29.5 percent from three and 67.9 percent at the line.

Those percentages would be worrisome for anyone, but they looked especially rough in Hampton's case, since shooting is such a big swing skill in his projections. His combination of burst, quickness and body control suggested he'd have little trouble getting into the paint, but without an outside shot to keep defenses honest, he was at risk of encountering a forest of long-limbed defenders at the basket.

But the 19-year-old has been busy reworking his form with long-time NBA sharpshooter Mike Miller, and the early reviews suggest major improvement. He has widened his base and improved his alignment, and if the results carry over from open gyms to NBA arenas, he could unlock the highest levels of his potential.

"If you go watch the film when he played OKC or Memphis, he didn't overly play great. But you couldn't keep him out of the paint even then," Miller told The Athletic's Sam Vecenie. "So when he's shooting the ball and they can't go under screens and they have to go over and he ends up getting a big man downhill in space, the sky is the limit for this kid."

Before Hampton's journey overseas, he was regarded as a top-five recruit, per 247Sports. That pedigree, combined with his revamped jumper, could have him climbing back up the draft boards.