With the 2019 NBA Draft less than two weeks away, our mock NBA Draft is beginning to take serious shape! With Zion Williamson, Ja Morant, and RJ Barrett being likely locks for the top three picks,how does the rest of the lottery shake out? In this week’s mock, Jarrett Culver rises, Sekou Doumbouya drops, and the Knicks trade the #3 pick. Without further ado, we give you our 1-14 lottery picks in our updated 2019 Mock NBA Draft.
14 – Boston Celtics: Brandon Clarke, Gonzaga
Position: F / Height: 6’8” / Age: 22
NBA Player Comp: a Paul Millsap/Jordan Bell blend
Previously: Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga
Swapping out one Zag for another, the Celtics get some nice value here with Brandon Clarke at the end of the lottery after taking Rui Hachimura a week prior. Despite dropping in our mock draft for the second straight week, perhaps no player’s draft stock has risen quicker than Clarke’s from an outstanding redshirt junior campaign and some ridiculous combine numbers (led all forwards with a 40.5-inch vert, fastest ¾ sprint). Despite being an undersized big, he’s an exceptional athlete with brilliant defensive instincts. He’s a blue-collar player whose only knock against him is his ability to shoot the rock. He’s fantastic scoring inside, and despite being the oldest lottery prospect by a wide margin, the Celtics (and their fan base in particular) would absolutely love to be able pick up the hard-nosed Clarke here at 14.
13 – Miami Heat: Jaxson Hayes, Texas
Position: C / Height: 6’11” / Age: 19
NBA Player Comp: a cross-breed of Jarrett Allen and a competent JaVale McGee
Previously: Brandon Clarke, Gonzaga
Re-entering the lottery discussion after dropping out a week ago, Jaxson Hayes finds a suitor in the Miami Heat at 13th overall. Already an elite rim protector after one season at Texas, Hayes is undeniably raw as a prospect but has improved as much as any big man in the draft this year. His measurables are eye-catching and his athleticism allows him to convert at a high rate down low. Hayes shot an impressive 74% from the line but a consistent shooting touch hasn’t been seen yet. He’s one of the youngest draft-eligible players this year, and there’s good reason to think he may not be done growing just yet. The Heat would be wise to scoop up Hayes considering the disappointing return on investment they’ve had on Hassan Whiteside and that max contract (which is over after 2019-20’s $27 million player option).
12 – Charlotte Hornets: Sekou Doumbouya, France
Position: F / Height: 6’9” / Age: 18
NBA Player Comp: a Paul George/Pascal Siakam hybrid in an ideal world
Previously: PJ Washington, Kentucky
After holding steady to the Wizards at #9 the past couple of weeks, Sekou Doumbouya drops to the Hornets at #12 this week. With scouts giving him as high an upside of nearly anybody in the draft, Doumbouya has outstanding pure athleticism to go along with a killer instinct at the ripe young age of 18. One of the most coveted European prospects since turning 15, Doumbouya is an absolute unit at 6’9” and 230 pounds. He’s turnover prone and his shot needs major work, but he’s the type of specimen that could truly blossom into an elite NBA defender and slasher. Charlotte may be in full-on rebuild mode if Kemba Walker skips town in free agency, and would be able to have snag one of the draft’s highest upside players all the way down at #12 in Doumbouya. This would be a heck of a steal for the boys in Buzz City.
11 – Minnesota Timberwolves: PJ Washington, Kentucky
Position: F / Height: 6’8” / Age: 20
NBA Player Comp: throw Patrick Patterson and Taj Gibson in a blender
Previously: Nassir Little, North Carolina
Continuing his ascent up draft boards, we have PJ Washington going 11th overall to the Wolves after making his lottery debut a week ago at #12 to the Hornets. Washington has been a fast-rising sophomore who added tons of scoring touch (> 42% from 3) to his game in his sophomore season. He had a fantastic NCAA Tournament which helped him enter the conversation as a legit lottery pick. He can really pass it for his size as well, and while he lacks the explosiveness that you’d want for today’s NBA, he’s an excellent finisher inside and out and gives the Timberwolves a well-rounded forward who is already on the fast track in terms of his development.
Next Page: Picks #10-6 – Including New York Knicks’ Trade!