LaMelo Ball for T-Wolves, Obi Toppin for Knicks in ESPN Pre-Lottery NBA Mock Draft | Bleacher report

Rick Rycroft / Associated Press

The 2020 NBA draft lottery will take place on Thursday, at which point we’ll have a better idea of ​​who will eventually end up where October will come.

For now, though, ESPN’s Jonathan Givony has had one last joke before the order was fixed. Givony has Georgia guard Anthony Edwards still locked in first place at the Golden State Warriors, with James Wiseman (Cleveland Cavaliers) in second and LaMelo Ball (Minnesota Timberwolves) at number 3.

Deni Avdija, the best international candidate in the class, went to the Atlanta Hawks at No. 4, followed by the Detroit Pistons who landed the big Onyeka Okongwu and Obi Toppin at no. 6 of the New York Knicks.

It’s hard to put solid analysis into the draft until the lottery is set, but Edwards is the clear favorite to go to number 1 overall. The powerful guard spent a frustrating season in Georgia, scoring 19.1 points on average but shooting a measly 29.4 percent three-pointer and failing to get the Bulldogs into the NCAA tournament conversation.

While Edwards would likely be more of a top five selection in a typical class, his relative confidence and upliftment make him attractive in a class full of players with obvious flaws.

Wiseman’s career in Memphis took off just before a scandal over inadmissible benefits ended his college career. Ball’s odyssey from dropping out of school playing Lithuanian basketball at the age of 16 to a failed startup championship run by his father and then returning overseas briefly in the Australian National Basketball League has been well documented.

Ball’s name carries by far the most caches among fans and the point guard has a chance to be a better pro than his older brother, Lonzo. That said, his experience against the top flight is limited, his shooting needs a lot of work and he is perhaps the worst defender in the lottery predictions.

Teams could end up gravitating towards safer choices like Toppin, who is already 22 but projects himself as a solid if not spectacular title holder.




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