As we turn the page on this year’s draft, it is never too early to take a look ahead towards the 2018 NBA Draft class. While Heavy previously took an in-depth look at the potential lottery picks, we’re going to explore the entire first round here. Two names are likely to remain at the top of the board: Michael Porter Jr. and Luka Doncic.
Right now, Doncic has the edge in our mock given the Celtics, thanks to a previous trade with the Nets that keeps on giving, have a good chance to secure the number one pick for the second straight season. Doncic is originally from Slovenia, but plays for Real Madrid.
Boston also has a chance to get the Lakers pick (via the Sixers), but it looks unlikely they will end up with it given the protections on the pick.
There’s a good chance the Celtics load up on forwards in the 2017 draft, making Doncic a more appealing option. ESPN’s Chad Ford has Doncic as his second ranked prospect, and describes why many NBA teams covet him.
“He is quite simply the most heralded international prospect I’ve ever scouted. At age 17 he [was] already starting and averaging eight points a game in the best league in Europe…The scouts who know Europe best say he’s a once-in-a-decade prospect,” Ford writes.
The early results are split on who has the early lead in the clubhouse for the 2018 draft. Here’s how ESPN describes Porter in their scouting report:
Porter owns an incredible combination of size, length, bounce and skill that makes him unique in the class. He shoots the ball with deep range and accuracy and displays a high and compact release point to get his shot off at virtually any point, and is equally proficient at scoring over top of contesting defenders with his pull-up game inside the lane…Throughout his career he was pegged with potential. During the summer of his senior year he took that upside and became more aggressive as he turned turned into high level production player. In almost every contest he would post a double-double as he scored and rebounded with consistency. Porter then dominated the high school season dropping big and mostly efficient numbers which kept his high school team undefeated.
While they are not leaving high school with the same acclaim as the top two prospects, Collin Sexton and Lonnie Walker have moved up my draft board. Sexton and Walker were two of the standout players in the McDonald’s All-American Game as well as the Jordan Brand Classic.
Sexton is one of the most exciting prospects as this crazy pass in the McDonald’s game shows:
The countdown has officially begun for the 2018 draft, and Heavy will be there every step of the way on the path to the draft. The following draft order is based on the early 2017-18 championship odds courtesy of OddsShark. Heavy has also factored in the picks each team owes, along with the various protections.
Here’s an early look at the 2018 NBA draft.
2018 NBA Mock Draft: 1st Round
|1. Boston Celtics (via Nets)||SG Luka Doncic, Real Madrid|
|2. Orlando Magic||F Michael Porter Jr., Missouri|
|3. Phoenix Suns||PG Collin Sexton, Alabama|
|4. Sacramento Kings||C DeAndre Ayton, Arizona|
|5. Atlanta Hawks||PF Mohamed Bamba, Texas|
|6. Detroit Pistons||SG Lonnie Walker, Miami|
|7. Charlotte Hornets||F Miles Bridges, Michigan State|
|8. Philadelphia Sixers (via Lakers)||C Nick Richards, Kentucky|
|9. New York Knicks||C Mitchell Robinson, Western Kentucky|
|10. New Orleans Hornets||SG Hamidou Diallo, Kentucky|
|11. Philadelphia Sixers||SG Troy Brown Jr., Oregon|
|12. Minnesota Timberwolves||PF Robert Williams, Texas A&M|
|13. Indiana Pacers||PG Trevon Duval, Undeclared|
|14. Dallas Mavericks||PF Wendell Carter, Duke|
|15. Denver Nuggets||PG Andrew Jones, Texas|
|16. Chicago Bulls||SF Justin Jackson, Maryland|
|17. Phoenix Suns (via Heat)||SF Isaac Bonga, Germany|
|18. Portland Trail Blazers||SG Bruce Brown, Miami|
|19. Utah Jazz||SF Brian Bowen, Louisville|
|20. Memphis Grizzlies||SF Jarred Vanderbilt, Kentucky|
|21. Milwaukee Bucks||PF Jaren Jackson, Michigan State|
|22. Utah Jazz (via Thunder)||F Billy Preston, Kansas|
|23. Toronto Raptors||PF/C Chimezie Metu, USC|
|24. Washington Wizards||SG Gary Trent Jr., Duke|
|25. L.A. Clippers||SG Allonzo Trier, Arizona|
|26. Houston Rockets||SF Dzanan Musa, Cedevita|
|27. Boston Celtics||PF Moritz Wagner, Michigan|
|28. San Antonio Spurs||C Tacko Fall, UCF|
|29. Cleveland Cavs||PG De’Anthony Melton, USC|
|30. Golden State Warriors||SG Grayson Allen, Duke|