Hello, everyone. It’s your favorite NBA Soup half-assed contributor Taylor here, ready to take you through the entire 2014 NBA Draft. I’m gonna be sitting here all night watching the damn thing so you don’t have to. Even though it’s fun to watch. Kinda. Sometimes. If there’s drama. Which there wasn’t last year. Last year sucked, pretty much.
But this one should be good! We’ll have you apprised of all of the proceedings, including trades that happen to come down on our watch here tonight. Good times. Good times, indeed.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are on the clock. Will they screw this up? Almost surely!
1. Cleveland Cavaliers – Andrew Wiggins, SF, Kansas
Wiggins was the presumptive No. 1 pick in this draft prior to even playing a second of college basketball, and here he goes to the Cavs at the top. He has high upside as a two-way player and should be able to defend at a high level from day one. His offensive game is a work-in-progress, but this is probably the best thing Cleveland could’ve done.
2. Milwaukee Bucks – Jabari Parker, F, Duke
This is what Parker apparently wanted all along, as Milwaukee is just about 80 miles from his hometown of Chicago. He’ll instantly become the face of the Bucks’ franchise, which probably doesn’t take a whole lot. He’ll enter the league as a guy that can probably score 20+ points per game as a rookie, which is something Milwaukee sorely needs. He’s big and versatile enough to play both forward spots. Who was the last guy that we could say was the Bucks’ franchise face? Glenn Robinson or something? Sheesh, Bucks.
3. Philadelphia 76ers – Joel Embiid, C, Kansas
Most seem to think Embiid is the highest-upside prospect in the class, and here he goes to Philly despite injury concerns. The Sixers took Nerlens Noel with a torn ACL a year ago, so clearly they aren’t afraid to take risks. If both Embiid and Noel can actually get onto the floor then the Sixers suddenly have the makings of an insane frontcourt. Prettay, prettay big if, though. But IF Embiid works out, then the Sixers’ shameless tanking last year worked nicely.
4. Orlando Magic – Aaron Gordon, F, Arizona
This is a bit of a surprise, though Gordon had been reportedly rising up draft boards in recent days. He’s one of the most athletic players in the country, and should be able to come in and defend and finish in the NBA right away. The combo of Gordon and Victor Oladipo should make for a fun run-n-gun unit for the Magic. Gordon can’t shoot, but hey, who needs to be able to shoot in the NBA, right?
5. Utah Jazz – Dante Exum, PG, Australia
A bit of a surprise that Exum slipped to five, where surely the Jazz are happy to scoop him up. He’s a bit of a wild card here, considering hardly anyone has seen him play competitively. He’s a big 6’6″, Michael Carter-Williams-y guard that has an insanely quick first step. Steal for the Jazz here. Unless he sucks, of course. Then this would certainly not be a steal.
6. Boston Celtics – Marcus Smart, PG, Oklahoma State
Rajon Rondo’s days in Boston could be numbered, so maybe the Celtics just took his replacement in the NBA-ready Marcus Smart. He’s got potential as a great two-way guard at the next level that could also play off-ball presumably alongside Rondo. Could we have a trade here?
7. Los Angeles Lakers – Julius Randle, PF, Kentucky
Randle was phenomenal as a freshman for Kentucky last season, and he’s another guy that looks fairly NBA-ready. He’s a lot like Zach Randolph, so the Lakers could have a double-double machine on their hands here.
8. Sacramento Kings – Nik Stauskas, G, Michigan
(Just kidding. Stauskas is way better than Jimmer has ever dreamed of being.)
9. Charlotte Hornets – Noah Vonleh, PF, Indiana
The Hornets took Cody Zeller in the lottery last year, but nab the draft’s faller in Vonleh here. He should look nice next to Al Jefferson down low for Charlotte, and has tremendous defensive potential. He can also step outside and shoot it a bit, which should help clear more room for Big Al down low. Best available wins out.
10. Philadelphia 76ers – Elfrid Payton, PG, Lousiana-Lafayette
So, Philly passed on taking Exum earlier, which seemed to save MCW. Now, the Sixers have taken one of the draft’s big risers in Payton, which seemingly puts MCW back on the table. He’s another big PG at 6’4″, though he isn’t a very good shooter. Great passer, great athlete, high upside. Drink every time I say “upside” from now on.
Whoa! MCW is at the draft! Seems awkward.
11. Denver Nuggets – Doug McDermott, F, Creighton
Dougie McBuckets! Probably the best shooter in the class here, though there’s no telling what position he’s playing in the NBA. He’s big and slow, but he probably isn’t strong enough to succeed much down low. Sounds like he’s getting traded to Chicago, too.
12. Orlando Magic – Dario Saric, F, Croatia
Saric is going to stay in Europe for at least another year, so he’s obviously meaningless this year. Also, the Magic are trading him to Philadelphia for Payton, so MCW can breathe easy. Or, since he’s staying with the 76ers, perhaps he won’t be happy. Hell, I don’t know.
13. Minnesota Timberwolves – Zach LaVine, G, UCLA
LaVine is an insane athlete, and he showed enough promise with the Bruins to where some believe he’s a star in the making. Sounds good for Wolves fans, considering they’re about to lose Kevin Love. He likely translates as an off-guard rather than a point guard in the league.
14. Phoenix Suns – T.J. Warren, G/F, North Carolina State
Warren is a scoring machine, so he’ll join a bunch of other wings that can score with the high-flying, upstart Suns. Both Channing Frye and P.J. Tucker will be free agents, though, so perhaps there’s a spot for Warren, yet.
15. Atlanta Hawks – Adreian Payne, PF, Michigan State
Payne came a long way as a prospect last season, which is probably why he rose all the way to 15th in this draft. He can step out and shoot from deep while also having the ability to bang around in the post. He’s already 23, which kinda sucks, but he’s a guy that can come in and contribute right away. The Hawks shot threes like crazy last year, so why not add another shooter!? WHY NOT!?
16. Denver Nuggets (from Bulls) – Jusuf Nurkic, C, Bosnia-Herzegovina
Some have compared Nurkic to Nikola Pekovic, which bodes well for the Nuggs down the line. He has a solid feel with his back-to-the-basket, though he’s not the best athlete.
17. Boston Celtics – James Young, G, Kentucky
Young invokes thoughts of another Young, Nick, when you watch him play. He’s a great scorer with the ability to slash and finish above-the-rim, as well. Boston has the makings of quite a young backcourt here. Avery Bradley’s time in Boston may also be done with.
Young…backcourt. Get it?
18. Phoenix Suns – Tyler Ennis, PG, Syracuse
Does this mean Phoenix is worried about potentially losing Eric Bledsoe as a free agent? Ennis is your classic point guard, always in control of the flow of the game and rarely making critical errors. This seems to speak volumes about the Suns’ confidence heading into free agency, though.
19. Denver Nuggets (via Bulls) – Gary Harris, G, Michigan State
Harris was tabbed by many as a guy that could go around No. 10, so a bit of a surprise to see him going here at 19. He should fit in nicely with the Nuggets’ up-tempo style. He’s a fantastic shooter that already appears to be a solid enough defender, despite being an undersized shooting guard at 6’4″.
To recap, the Nuggets get Nurkic and Harris with the picks they got from Chicago in exchange for trading Doug McDermott.
20. Toronto Raptors – Bruno Caboclo, F, Brazil
This is a surprise. The Raptors take Bruno Caboclo…whoever that is! It’s Toronto, though, so I guess it’s no surprise that they took a random international guy. Fran Frischilla just called him “the Brazilian Kevin Durant”, so who knows what the hell to make of this. He’s listed at 6’8″, 205, meaning he’s probably the next Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Translation: Reeeeacchhhhh! This is kinda like when you’re at a restaurant but don’t know what to order and then just end up randomly panic-ordering something when you’re on-the-spot. Well done, Raptors!
21. Oklahoma City Thunder – Mitch McGary, C/F, Michigan
McGary missed a bunch of games because of a back problem combined with an impending marijuana suspension that threatened his next season, and some thought he may slip to round two as a result. He’s got a big “motor” and can finish at the basket, but the rest of his game is rather raw at this point.
But, since the Thunder drafted him, surely he’ll become a stud.
22. Memphis Grizzlies – Jordan Adams, G, UCLA
The Grizzlies could use perimeter scoring, which is what Adams figures to provide. Not a stellar athlete, but his scoring instincts help outweigh that. He’s got a bit of James Harden in him, which is probably music to the ears of Memphis fans.
(Does Memphis have fans? I don’t even know)
23. Utah Jazz – Rodney Hood, G/F, Duke
Hood was one of the best shooters in college basketball last year. There’s plenty of divisiveness regarding his potential at the next level, but you figure shooting has to translate, at least.
24. Charlotte Hornets – Shabazz Napier, PG, Connecticut
Overrated point guard alert! Good luck with all of your UConn point guards, Hornets.
*UPDATE: As many presumed, the Heat are now playing the part of the 2010 Cavaliers and are trying to make moves that please LeBron, so Marc Stein is reporting that Miami is set to trade for Napier. This is presumably based on a tweet LeBron made a while ago regarding his fondness for Napier. Excellent plan, Pat Riley.
25. Houston Rockets – Clint Capela, F/C, Switzerland
ESPN’s Kevin Pelton has Capela rated as one of the top players in the draft, so Houston may be getting a steal here. He’s probably not coming to the U.S. right away, which would fit into Houston’s plan of retaining enough financial flexibility to pursue big free agents this summer.
26. Charlotte Hornets (via Heat) – P.J. Hairston, G/F, Texas Legends
Hairston is a scorer, which makes him a great get for the Hornets here. They’ve got interior scoring aplenty with Jefferson, but need someone to take pressure off of Kemba Walker on the wing. Hairston was excellent in limited time in the D-League last year, so that skill figures to translate well to the NBA. I love your draft so far, Hornets.
Also, he’s from North Carolina. So hey, welcome home! (even though he was exiled from UNC)
27. Phoenix Suns (again) – Bogdan Bogdanovic, G/F, Serbia
Bogdan Bogdanovic seems like a fake name. Like George Cauldron. But here he goes to the Suns at 27. He can create his own shot on the wing and has good size for his position at 6’6″ with long arms. He may not come to the NBA right away, so we’ll see what kind of impact he makes down the road.
*generic draft analysis*
28. Los Angeles Clippers – CJ Wilcox, G, Washington
The Clippers drafted sharpshooter Reggie Bullock with their first-round pick last year, and here they nab another shooter in Wilcox. He doesn’t have much more to his game than shooting ability, but you can never have enough of that, right?
(Hate this pick, by the way)
29. Oklahoma City Thunder – Josh Huestis, SF, Stanford
Sounds like Huestis is primarily suited as a defender, so they just took another Thabo Sefolosha or Andre Roberson? Great!
30. San Antonio Spurs – Kyle Anderson, F/G, UCLA
Spurs steal? Spurs steal! This never happens! He’s slow as hell, but his basketball IQ is off the charts.
31. Milwaukee Bucks – Damien Inglis, F, France
Inglis is a big-bodied youngster that some seem to think can come to the NBA and contribute sooner than later.
32. Philadelphia 76ers – KJ McDaniels, F, Clemson
McDaniels excels defensively, as evidenced by having won the ACC’s Defensive Player of the Year award last season. He may block all of the shots in the NBA. ALL of them.
33. Cleveland Cavaliers – Joe Harris, G, Virginia
White shooter alert!
34. New York Knicks (via Mavericks) – Cleanthony Early, G/F, Wichita State
Early was an exceptional scorer last season, and it’s a bit of a surprise to see him fall this far. The Knicks picked this pick up in the Tyson Chandler trade, and immediately get some scoring help on the wing. In case you haven’t heard, they may lose a rather potent wing scorer this summer.
Speaking of that, maybe Phil Jackson thinks he can trick Knicks fans into thinking Cleanthony is just the result of Carmelo Anthony collapsing into himself. Or something.
35. Utah Jazz – Jarnell Stokes, F, Tennessee
Stokes averaged a double-double last season for the Volunteers. That’s…pretty much all I’ve got here.
36. Milwaukee Bucks – Johnny O’Bryant III, F/C, LSU
He’s a bit short for a center at 6’8″, but at nearly 260 pounds O’Bryant is a total load in the post. He’s lost weight, but he still knows how to use his wide frame down there.
37. Toronto Raptors – DeAndre Daniels, F, Connecticut
Something something forward prospect Raptors.
38. Detroit Pistons – Spencer Dinwiddie, PG, Colorado
Pretty nice mustache on this guy.
39. Philadelphia 76ers – Jerami Grant, F, Syracuse
I’ve heard of this guy!
40. Minnesota Timberwolves – Glenn Robinson III, F, Michigan
I’ve heard of him, too!
41. Denver Nuggets – Nikola Jokic, Euro
42. Houston Rockets – Nick Johnson, G, Arizona
I’ve heard of him! The Rockets are probably on the verge of trading Jeremy Lin, so that takes a point guard off the books. They already have Troy Daniels and Isaiah Canaan behind Patrick Beverley, as well, so we’ll see if Johnson ever makes it out of the D-League this year. Prrrrrrrobably not.
43. Atlanta Hawks – Walter Tavares, C, Cape Verde
This guy is 7’2″.