2021 NBA Draft: Mock 1.0, Knicks bolster the backcourt

Jalen Suggs, NY Knicks, NBA Draft (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Jalen Suggs, NY Knicks, NBA Draft (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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NBA Draft
Scottie Barnes, Knicks. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

NBA Draft Mock 1.0: Filling out the top-5

3. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Houston), Evan Mobley, PF/C, USC

Mobley would be a no-brainer for the Thunder here. Pairing Mobley with SGA would provide OKC a natural and exciting potential core.

Those who watched March Madness bore witness to Mobley’s immense skillset during USC’s run to the Elite 8. It is rare to find a 7 footer who can shoot, playmaker, defend, and run the floor like Mobley. He is polished and will be ready to play on day 1. He is everything that NBA teams want in the modern big man.

4. Golden State Warriors (from Minnesota), Scottie Barnes, F, Florida State

I never want to hear a Warrior fan complain about anything for as long as I live.

Scottie Barnes would be a natural fit in Golden State. He is the kind of player that the organization has come to value quite highly. He is a 6-9’ playmaker with the defensive ability and a high motor. He has drawn comparisons to Draymond Green and has a higher upside than the controversial Warriors forward. Others have compared Barnes to Ben Simmons.

5. Detroit Pistons, Jonathan Kuminga, F, G League Ignite

Jalen Suggs would make sense here, but the Pistons only just drafted Killian Hayes at the point guard position and likely still want to get a look at the young Frenchman after an injury-plagued rookie season.

So, instead, I have Detroit selecting Jonathan Kuminga, a raw, high upside prospect who played with Jalen Green on the G League Ignite team. This would be a swing-for-the-fences type pick that a struggling, rebuilding franchise like the Pistons can afford to make. In transition Kuminga looks like a prime Tracy McGrady, soaring down the floor in a flash and finishing with hyper-athletic dunks.