2023 NBA Draft Results and Instant Analysis

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2023 NBA Mock Draft

Extended 2023 Draft Thoughts and Reflections

#TeamPlayerInstant Analysis – 6/22/23
1SpursVictor Wemban-yamaC – Mets 92 (France) – HT: 7-4 – WT: 230 – WING: 8-0 – Int.04 – Dynasties are built around moments like this. Drafting Wembanyama could very well mark the moment when the once proud Spurs franchise rises again to glory. This could be the moment that shifts the power balance of the NBA. Yes, these are grand words, but if he’s able to stay healthy Victor will undoubtedly be an all time great.
2HornetsBrandon MillerSF – Alabama – HT: 6-9 – WT: 200 – WING: 7-0 – Fr – Miller is going to get a lot of buckets for the Hornets and he’s the perfect complimentary piece next to LaMelo. I’m sure this was a tough call for the front office. I would have gone with Scoot, even with the imperfect fit, but time will tell which pick was right.
3BlazersScoot HendersonPG – Ignite – HT: 6-3 – WT: 195 – WING: 6-9 – USA.04 – Scoot would be the no.1 overall pick in many draft classes. He’s a truly elite talent. The Blazers are in an interesting position with a mix of young and older players but they are very well positioned with a future backcourt of Scoot and Shaedon Sharpe.
4RocketsAmen ThompsonPG – City Reapers, OTE – HT: 6-5 3/4 – WT: 214 – WING: 7-0 – USA03 – They don’t make many athletes like Amen Thompson. He will step on to the floor of his first game and instantly be one of the best athletes in the league. This is a great swing for the fences pick by the Rockets. Amen is a nice fit next to Jalen and will help open space for Jabari Smith Jr. and company. So far the picks are going as expected.
5PistonsAusar Thompson SGCity Reapers, OTE – HT: 6-5 3/4 – WT: 218 – WING: 7-0 – USA03 – The Thompson twins go back to back. What a cool story. Ausar is an awesome addition on the wing for the Pistons. He’s a freak athlete with developing shooting touch, a super hard worker and a standout defender. He’s going to benefit a lot from playing off of Cade and Jaden Ivey.
6MagicAnthony BlackPG – Arkansas – HT: 6-5 3/4 – WT: 210 – WING: 6-7 1/2 Fr. – A love this pick. Black is an all around talent who plays a connective, team-first game. He’s always looking to pass the rock, plays incredible defense and brings great energy on the court. The Magic are definitely a team on the rise and Black brings a whole new dimension to the backcourt.
7Wizards (from Pacers)Bilal Coulibaly SF – Mets 92 (France) – HT: 6-8 – WT: 195 – WING: 7-2 – Int.04 – Boom!! The first surprise of the draft. Bilal was no.8 on my final big board but I didn’t expect him to go quite this high. The Pacers are trading this pick to the Wizards who get a super high upside developmental wing player who, if he hits, could be a star.
8Pacers (from Wizards)Jarace WalkerPF – Houston – HT: 6-6 1/2 – WT: 248 – WING: 7-2 1/2 – Fr – The Pacers get their guy. Walker does a little bit of everything on the court. He’s a monster on defense, a good rebounder, plays with great energy and doesn’t need a ton of touches to be effective. Walker has more creative abilities than he got to show at Houston and has plenty of upside to develop into.
9JazzTaylor Hendricks PF – UCF – HT: 6-8 1/4 – WT: 213 – WING: 7-0 1/2 – Fr – Hendricks is going to be an awesome addition at the PF position alongside Walker Kessler. A really solid pick for the Jazz. There may have been higher upside players available but Hendricks is a really smart pick.
10Thunder (from Mavs)Cason WallacePG – Kentucky – HT: 6-2 1/2 – WT: 195 – WING: 6-8 1/2 – Fr – Wallace lands in the top 10 (a little higher than I had him) and will be suiting up for the Thunder who get this pick from the Mavericks. The Thunder get another big time guard and it’ll be interesting to see how they use their lineups.
11Magic (from Bulls)Jett HowardSF – Michigan – HT: 6-7 – WT: 220 – WING: NA – Fr – Juwan’s son Jett is joining the Orlando Magic. Wow! The Magic really needed shooting and they get one of the best in the draft. He’s also a creative on the ball player. I had him ranked quite a bit lower but he’s a really good fit for the Magic.
12Mavs (from Thunder)Dereck Lively IIC – Duke – HT: 7-1 – WT: 230 – WING: 7-8 – Fr – The Mavs traded back to dump salary and still land a great addition in Dereck Lively. He brings a much needed boost to the frontcourt and can help anchor the defense. It’s easy to see him catching a lot of lobs from Luka and will be fun to watch if his floor spacing ability translates from workouts to the game.
13RaptorsGradey DickSF – Kansas – HT: 6-6 1/4 – WT: 204 – WING: 6-8 3/4 – Fr – The Raptors land perhaps the best shooter in the draft. He’s also a really crafty and aware player who might not have the best athleticism but has great anticipation and feel on both ends. It’s going to be fun to watch him let it fly in Toronto.
14PelicansJordan HawkinsSG – UConn – HT: 6-4 1/4 – WT: 186 – WING: 6-6 3/4 – So – I love it. Hawkins is going to be a dynamic addition to the Pelicans offense. He’s not the most creative with the ball in his hands but he has a truly elite skill in his movement shooting ability. Meanwhile the Cam Whitmore slide continues.
15HawksKobe BufkinSG – Michigan – HT: 6-4 1/4 – WT: 187 – WING: 6-7 3/4 – So – Hawks add another guard in the versatile Bufkin, who can play on or off the ball. It’ll be interesting to see how they divvy up the minutes, or could Dejounte be on the move? Bufkin is a great finisher around the rim, despite not being the most explosive athlete, and he’s about as crafty as they come with the ball in his hands.
16Jazz (from T-Wolves)Keyonte GeorgeSG – Baylor – HT: 6-4 – WT: 205 – WING: NA – Fr – A nice addition for the Jazz. George is a high scoring guard with deep range and underrated passing ability. He’s going to be a bucket in the NBA. At some points this season he was being mocked in the top 10 and even in the top 5. Getting him just outside the lottery is great value.
17LakersJalen Hood-Schifino PG – Indiana – HT: 6-4 1/4 – WT: 216 – WING: 6-10 1/4 – Fr – The Lakers land the multi-talented JHS who will be able to come in and contribute on both ends of the floor. He’s a fiesty and strong player who plays with an edge. If he can become a knockdown 3pt shooter he has a chance to be a star.
18HeatJaime Jaquez Jr. SF – UCLA – HT: 6-6 – WT: 226 – WING: 6-9 1/2 – Sr – A great fit for Heat culture. JJJ is a high IQ and experienced player who plays with an edge. He just gets after it on both ends. The draft can be wild. Did you ever think Jaquez would go ahead of Cam Whitmore?
19WarriorsBrandin Podziemski SG – Santa Clara – HT: 6-5 – WT: 195 – WING: NA – So Podziemsi stays in the Bay Area and will be a great fit on the Warriors and could be a meaningful contributor off the bench. He might not be a star but he’s exactly what the Warriors need at this point, a player who can contribute early, make the right plays and give great effort on both ends.
20Rockets (from Clippers)Cam WhitmoreSF – Villanova – HT: 6-5 3/4- WT: 234 – WING: 6-8 1/2 – Fr –. Whew, what a slide for Whitmore. There have been whispers about his bad interviews and possibly some medical questions but to get a talent like this at no.20 is an absolute no-brainer. He’s a monster of an athlete who can tear the rim down. Now he’s got a big, big chip on his shoulder.
21Nets (from Suns)Noah Clowney  PF – Alabama – HT: 6-10 – WT: 210 – WING: NA – Fr – Clowney is one of my favorites player in this class. He’s young and it’ll take some time but he’s got all the tools and talent to be a big time player a few years down the road. Great upside pick for the Nets.
22NetsDariq Whitehead SF – Duke – HT: 6-5 – WT: 220 – WING: 6-9 – Fr- Despite the foot surgerys Dariq lands in the mid first round and goes to a good situation in Brooklyn. If he gets back to full strength and health the Nets will have a steal here. There is some risk but at this point in the draft this makes perfect sense.
23Blazers (from Knicks)Kris MurrayPF – Iowa – HT: 6-7 3/4 – WT: 213 – WING: 6-11 3/4 – Jr – A solid win-now pick. I thought Murray might go higher and the Blazers got a solid value at no.23. He’ll be able to come in and give them some meaningful minutes and contribute on both ends. If he had lasted one more pick he might have been reunited with his brother in Sacramento.
24Mavs (from Kings)Olivier-Maxence ProsperPF – Marquette – HT: 6-6 3/4 – WT: 212 – WING: 7-1 – Jr – The Mavs acquire this pick and get the hyper-active O-Max Prosper. I wonder if Kris Murray had still been here would the Kings have made this trade? The Mavs come away with a few frontline and big improvements on the defensive end.
25Pistons (from Grizzlies)Marcus SasserSG – Houston – HT: 6-1 1/4 – WT: 196 – WING: 6-7 – Sr – The Pistons trade up from the second round and land the tough, hard-nosed guard from Houston who should be a nice spark off the bench behind Cade and Ivey. He’s a gamer and a baller who isn’t afraid of the big moments. Nice pick for the Pistons.
26Pacers (from Cavs) Ben Sheppard SG – Belmont – HT: 6-6 – WT: 190 – WING: NA – Sr. – Nice pick by the Pacers, getting the sharp-shooting Sheppard who was one of the biggest risers during the pre-draft process. He brings awesome energy and is a team first guy. Great talent, great shooter and great culture pick.
27Hornets (from Nuggets)Nick Smith Jr.SG – Arkansas – HT – 6-5 – WT – 185 – Wing – NA – Fr – At one point Smith was considered a potential top 5 pick but after a lingering knee issue slowed him down this year he falls all the way to no.27. He’s got a chance to be a microwave scorer and it wouldn’t surprise anyone if he outplays this draft position. The Hornets get another guy who can put the ball in the bucket.
28Jazz (from 76ers)Brice SensabaughSF – Ohio State – HT: 6-6 – WT: 235 – WING: NA – Fr – A walking bucket, Brice will have to round out the rest of his game but he’ll come in and be able to put the ball in the basket right away. There have been some injury/health concerns, otherwise we might have gone much higher.
29Nuggets (from Celtics)Julian Strawther  SF – Gonzaga – HT: 6-6 – WT: 209 – WING: 6-9 1/4 – Jr – This is a rock solid choice for the Nuggets. He’s a really solid role player type who doesn’t need the ball, shoots really well and just knows how to play. Just what the Nuggets need.
30Clippers (from Bucks)Kobe BrownSF – Missouri – HT: 6-6 1/2 – WT: 252 – WING: 7-0 3/4 – SrOK, interesting. I didn’t see this one coming. Brown is nice scoring forward who has a much improved 3pt shot. I had many players ranked ahead of him but that’s what makes the draft so fun to watch!
#TeamPlayerInstant Analysis – 6/23/23
31HornetsJames NnajiC – Barcelona (Nigeria) – HT: 6-10 – WT: NA – WING: 7-7 – Int.04 – I’m a big James Nnaji fan. He’s super young and will take some time but he’s an absolute monster of a young man who looks like he’ll have a clear-cut role at the NBA level. While he might not contribute much early we could look back on this pick in a few years and see him as a steal.
32NuggetsJalen PickettPG – Penn State – HT: 6-2 – WT: 198 – WING: 6-7 1/4 – Sr – The Nuggets keep adding win-now players. I had him ranked lower but you can’t argue with the fit.
33WolvesLeonard MillerPF – Ignite (Canada) – HT: 6-9 1/4 – WT: 213 – WING: 7-2 – FrGreat value here. Miller is a super hard working big who will fit in well with the young Timberwolves frontcourt.
34KingsColby JonesSF – Xavier – HT: 6-6 – WT: 203 – WING: NA – Jr – Scoring is great but it helps to have defenders and glue guys too. Colby Jones is one of those guys who does all the dirty work, plays with great energy and is a great connective passer. Solid pick here for the Kings.
35BullsJulian PhillipsSF – Tennessee – HT: 6-7 – WT: 196 – WING: 6-11 1/2 Fr – This is a great upside pick. Phillips has great tools, is a standout defender and has a better shooting touch than what he showed in college.
36BucksAndre JacksonSF – UConn – HT: 6-6 – WT: 210 – WING: NA – Jr – I love this fit with the Bucks who can use the high energy spark off the bench. Jackson is a great passer for a wing and knows his role, defends all over the court and does the dirty work.
37NuggetsHunter TysonPF – Clemson – HT: 6-7 1/2- WT: 208 – WING: 6-9 3/4- Sr – A sweet-shooting big forward who can rebound and plays solid D. Another role player type who doesn’t have big upside but might be able to give some minutes off the bench.
38CelticsJordan Walsh   SF – Arkansas – HT: 6-7 – WT: 190 – WING: 7-3 – Fr – At one point last year I viewed Walsh as a potential lottery pick. While that was a bit much I think he’s a solid value here. He’s a great defender who can impact on that end of the floor early in his career.
39HawksMouhamed Gueye PF – Washington State (Senegal) – HT: 6-10 1/4 – WT: 213 – WING: 7-3 1/4 – So – Mo Gueye is an upside pick who probably won’t have an impact right away but has a chance to make it. He’s got great tools and flashes shooting ability.
40Lakers Maxwell Lewis   SF – Pepperdine – HT: 6-7 – WT: 195 – WING: NA – So – Lewis is a natural talent who is still learning the game and figuring out how good he can be. He’s got a sweet shooting stroke and can put together moves with the ball in his hands.
41HornetsAmari Bailey  SG – UCLA – HT: 6-3 1/4 – WT: 191 – WING: 6-7 – Fr – A do-it-all combo guard with an extra gear of athleticism. Has scoring talent and does it within the flow of the offense.
42WizardsTristan Vukcevic C – KK Partizan (Serbia) – HT: 6-11 1/4 – WT: 223 – WING: 7-2 1/2 – Int03 – Casual fans won’t know him but he’s going to be good. One of the best shooting bigs in the draft. Let’s see if he comes over this year.
43BlazersRayan Rupert SG – NZ Breakers (France) – Ht – 6-6 – Wt – 193 – Wing – 7-2 – Int.04 – At one point he was considered a potential lottery pick but he goes mid second round. Great value pick here for the Blazers.
44SpursSidy CissokoSF – G League Ignite (France) – HT: 6-7 – WT: 220 – WING: 6-9 1/2 – Int.04 – I love Sidy’s upside. He might be a year or two away from being ready but goes to a situation in San Antonio where he could see some time. He joins fellow Frenchman Wembanyama.
45GrizzliesGregory Jackson  PF – South Carolina – HT: 6-8 1/4 – WT: 214 – WING: 6-11 1/2 – Fr – All the talent in the world but can he put it together in the NBA? This development story will be fascinating to watch.
46HawksSeth LundySF – Penn State – HT: 6-4 – WT: 214 – WING: 6-10 1/4 Sr – A pure shooter who knows how to move without the ball and find his shot. Solid pick.
47PacersMojave KingSG – G League Ignite (New Zealand) – HT: 6-3 3/4 – WT: 200 – WING: 6-8 – Int.02 – I’m a fan. He has to improve the outside shooting but I love his instincts, athleticism and feel for moving off the ball. Can play above the rim. Solid value here.
48ClippersJordan MillerSF – Miami – HT: 6-4 1/2 – WT: 192 – WING: 6-11 3/4- Sr – One of the heros of March Madness, Miller has a mature game and has a real chance to stick in the league.
49CavsEmoni Bates SF – Eastern Michigan – HT: 6-8 1/4 – WT: 179 – WING: 6-9 – So This is the right range for Emoni. He’s got all kinds of shot-making ability and scoring upside but also has a long ways to go before being ready to hold his own at the NBA level. He’s a big name with a fun game but will have to add more to his game.
50ThunderKeyontae JohnsonSF – Kansas State – HT: 6-4 – WT: 239 – WING: 7-0 – Sr – Keyontae overcame a lot of challenges to make it here. Congratulations to him for all of his hard work and dedication and believing in himself. He brings leadership and toughness to the Thunder.
51NetsJalen Wilson SF – Kansas – HT: 6-5 1/2 – WT: 230 – WING: 6-8 – Jr – A steady forward who needs to shoot at a high level to find minutes.
52SunsToumani Camara  SF – Dayton (Belgium) – HT: 6-7 – WT: 220 – WING: 7-0 1/2 – Sr – Has an NBA frame and tools. Let’s see if he can put it all together.
53 WolvesJaylen ClarkSG – UCLA – HT: 6-4 – WT: 204 – WING: 6-9 – Jr – Once he’s back healthy (Achilles) he’ll bring his elite defensive play-making abilities and all around game.
54Kings Jalen SlawsonSF – Furman – HT: 6-6 1/2 – WT: 222 – WING: 6-11 3/4 – SrA sturdy forward who puts in work on both ends. Will probably spend time in the G League but has a chance to make it.
55PacersIsaiah WongSG – Miami – HT: 6-2 1/2 – WT: 178 – WING: 6-6 3/4 – Sr – An athletic guard who can get buckets. Nice value here.
56GrizzliesTarik BiberovicSF – Turkey – HT: 6-7 – WT: NA – WING: NA – We’ll see…
57WarriorsTrayce Jackson-DavisPF – Indiana – HT: 6-8 1/4 – WT: 240 – WING: 7-1 – Sr – I don’t get it. I would have taken TJD as high as about 25-30 range. He has a real chance to be an impact player in the league. I can’t believe he lasted this long.
58BucksChris Livingston SF – Kentucky – HT: 6-4 1/2 – WT: 190 – WING: 6-11 – Fr – An upside prospect who didn’t get to show it all at Kentucky but has a lot of ability.
60forfeited  Extended 2023 Draft Thoughts and Reflections