NBA Mock Draft 8.0: A new face for the Wolves

Welcome to NBA Mock Draft 8.0 at SKORNorth.com, our penultimate edition.

This is the third version with the current draft order in place, any trades that happen between this publishing and the actual draft beginning (looking at you, New Orleans) will be shown in version 9.0, set to release the morning of the draft on June 20.

The first five versions of this exercise all incorporated simulations from Tankathon.com. The previous seven mock drafts can be found below. – 5.0 – 6.0 – 7.0

We include brief writeups for each lottery selection and feature the complete first round.

1. New Orleans PelicansZion Williamson, Duke

You know it, I know it, everyone in the NBA knows it. The Pelicans are picking Zion and that’s that.

2. Memphis GrizzliesJa Morant, Murray State

The Grizzlies hired former Milwaukee assistant Taylor Jenkins as their head coach earlier this week and he’s specialized in player development. All signs point to moving on from Mike Conley at point guard and handing the keys to the franchise to Jaren Jackson, Jr. and Morant.

3. New York KnicksRJ Barrett, Duke

When the news broke on Wednesday that the New Orleans Pelicans were in discussions with both Los Angeles and Boston about a trade for Anthony Davis, it was moderately surprising that the Knicks weren’t mentioned. Maybe their package of assets, even with the No. 3 pick included isn’t as strong as those of Boston and the Lakers, but this is still a strong chip in a draft with three top end players thought to be at the top. If the Knicks pick here, Barrett is probably the guy. If the Knicks don’t pick here, Barrett is probably the guy that is selected.

4. Los Angeles LakersDe’Andre Hunter, Virginia

The Lakers – unlike the Knicks – were reportedly in discussions with the Pelicans for Davis, and the fourth pick would be part of the package. If it’s not, the Lakers have plenty of needs, including outside shooting and defense. Hunter can help with both of those immediately. He should be an above average defender in his career and will instantly be one of the three best 3-point shooters on the Lakers.

5. Cleveland CavaliersDarius Garland, Vanderbilt

The Lakers selecting Hunter opens the door for the Cavaliers to take a bit of a risk on forming an excellent young backcourt with Garland and Collin Sexton. Garland has a skillset that could resemble Damian Lillard’s one day in the NBA. He’s a bit of an unknown after playing only six games at Vanderbilt thanks to a torn meniscus.

6. Phoenix SunsJarrett Culver, Texas Tech

Culver and Devin Booker in the backcourt could be a fun pairing for the Suns. Culver should enter the NBA as a strong defender and scorer at 6-foot-6. Phoenix could benefit from grabbing more of a facilitating guard here, but Culver isn’t a bad pick.

7. Chicago BullsCoby White, North Carolina

The Bulls have a solid group of young players between Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen, and Wendell Carter, Jr., but Kris Dunn has been a failure at point guard. If this team is going to reach anything of significance, they need an upgrade at that position. White is a bit of a raw prospect, but shouldn’t have any issue playing at NBA speed or shooting from 3-point range at the next level.

8. Atlanta HawksCam Reddish, Duke

There’s been rumors of the Atlanta Hawks potentially moving up in this draft to No. 5 (Cleveland), partly to ensure that they could grab someone of Reddish’s caliber. They already have their backcourt of the future in Trae Young and Kevin Huerter and a strong frontcourt piece in John Collins. Reddish would give them a potential star on the wing that could round out what is starting to look like a future contender.

9. Washington WizardsNassir Little, North Carolina

Little didn’t put it all together in his only year at North Carolina, but he still has all of the tools to be successful in the NBA. His outside shot needs to improve, but he’ll be one of the more athletic guys in this draft class even without. It.

10. Atlanta Hawks (from Dallas)Sekou Doumbouya, France

Doumbouya is looked at as a project right now. He’s been playing professionally overseas but has been compared to Toronto’s Pascal Siakim as of late. If that’s the end product, the Hawks are big winners here. He’s a freak athlete that needs much of his game refined.

11. Minnesota TimberwolvesTyler Herro, Kentucky

In the eighth version of this mock draft, Herro makes his first appearance in the lottery, vaulting up to No. 11 with Minnesota. Herro spent one year at Kentucky and there are reasons to think that the best is yet to come for him. He possesses a skill that the Wolves severely lack in the backcourt, which is shooting from the perimeter. He only shot 35% from 3-point range at Kentucky, but his 93% mark from the free throw line suggests that he’s going to be better than 35% consistently. He can shoot off the dribble or in the catch and shoot. There are shades of Devin Booker at Kentucky in his game. He could be a steal at 11 despite not being someone that’s been talked about a ton thus far. It’s worth noting that he was invited to the NBA Draft by the league, suggesting he may go higher than some anticipate.

12. Charlotte HornetsRomeo Langford, Indiana

Langford is a score-first guard that could potentially be the first step of a rebuild if the Hornets are without Kemba Walker moving forward. Maybe Walker sticks around and Langford is some help for him, but if not, this is a solid beginning to the rebuild in Charlotte.

13. Miami HeatKevin Porter, Jr., USC

Porter, Jr. is a guy that could have been a top-5 talent in this draft, but had character concerns while at USC. He was dismissed from the team during the season at Southern Cal, but has the talent to potentially be a star in the NBA.

14. Boston Celtics (from Sacramento via Philadelphia)Jaxson Hayes, Texas

Hayes slipped a bit in this mock as a result of the Hawks going with Doumbouya, but the Celtics would be getting rim protection from the 6-foot-11 center and a high-flier to send towards the rim on pick-and-rolls.


15. Detroit PistonsRui Hachimura, Gonzaga

16. Orlando MagicPJ Washington, Kentucky

17. Atlanta HawksBrandon Clarke, Gonzaga

18. Indiana PacersNickeil Alexander-Walker, Virginia Tech

19. San Antonio SpursGoga Bitadze, Georgia

20. Boston Celtics (from LA Clippers via Memphis)Bol Bol, Oregon

21. Oklahoma City ThunderCameron Johnson, North Carolina

22. Boston CelticsMatisse Thybulle, Washington

23. Utah JazzGrant Williams, Tennessee

24. Philadelphia 76ersCarsen Edwards, Purdue

25. Portland Trail BlazersKZ Okpala, Stanford

26. Cleveland Cavaliers (from Houston)Darius Bazley, Princeton High School

27. Brooklyn Nets (from Denver)Johntay Porter, Missouri

28. Golden State WarriorsKeldon Johnson, Kentucky

29. San Antonio Spurs (from Toronto)Dylan Windler, Belmont

30. Milwaukee BucksNicolas Claxton, Georgia