1. Atlanta Hawks: Marvin Bagley III, PF/C
Marvin Bagley only recently became a projected part of the 2017 draft. His reclassification to this class happened in mid-August, and he instantly became the odds on favorite to go number one.
Bagley is a mobile big who plays hard, is able to stretch the floor and play defense at a high level. Even though he doesn’t make a high-percentage of his jump shots, his mechanics are solid and his percentage should go up with reps.
Barring a major unexpected weakness or injury, look for Bagley to play his way to the top of draft boards.
2. Chicago Bulls: Michael Porter Jr., F
Michael Porter Jr. has drawn comparisons to Kevin Durant because of his size and ability to score from all-three levels. Though that may be a bit of a stretch, he is most likely the closest thing to KD since KD himself.
At 6′ 10, Porter’s big enough and mobile enough to be a solid defender in addition to a top-notch scorer. Even though he has at times a questionable motor, he plays hard enough for that not to be much of an issue.
If he is able to prove his game will translate to the college level, there will be very little reason to think that he won’t succeed in the NBA.
3. Cleveland Cavaliers (via Boston from Brooklyn): DeAndre Ayton, PF/C
DeAndre Ayton seems to be tailor-made for today’s NBA. A seven-footer who is athletic and can play from the perimeter. His work ethic needs some improving, as there are reports he’s lazy in that regard.
However you want to want to view him, there is no doubt the talent is there. Whether or not he capitalizes on it is up to him.
If he puts the work in, he could very well jump to the top. If the same issues persist, he could in for a fall.
4. Phoenix Suns: Luka Doncic G/F
Luka Doncic can be a hard prospect to gauge because he’s played his entire career in Europe to this point. However, the fact that he’s played and started in the toughest league outside the NBA since he was 16 speaks volumes.
His offensive game is very advanced for his age, especially in terms of IQ. He’s not the most athletic and isn’t the best defender, but he gives solid effort on that end of the floor. Because of that, he should be able to be hidden in an NBA defense.
Look for his draft stock to stay pretty steady until he gets to workout with NBA teams.
5. Sacramento Kings: Mo Bamba C/PF
Mo Bamba has all the physical tools to succeed in the NBA. Standing 6′ 11″ with a 7’9″ (!) wingspan, Bamba would be the longest player in the NBA.
His offensive game needs refining and he needs a more consistent motor, but his measurements alone should make him a guaranteed first round pick in his worst case scenario.