With NBA team workouts now in full swing, it's time for another update of our mock draft.
Over the course of the past few weeks I've been speaking with numerous NBA team sources about how the draft might play out June 27.
Here's our latest update on how we see things going.
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Analysis: Typically, by this juncture in the draft, we know who the No. 1 pick is. Right now, however, we're just offering educated guesses. That's because Cavs sources say that the team won't be close to making a decision until workouts are done and the team has a chance to make a thorough pass through the medical information. With three potential top picks unable to work out because of injuries, those reports have never been more important.
Until we hear otherwise, Noel is the default pick here. General manager Chris Grant has been a fan of Noel's all year and even recommended his doctor. Assuming the rehab is going well (his doctor, James Andrews, insists Noel is ahead of schedule while other NBA team doctors are wringing their hands a little), Noel should come out on top. He's the top prospect in the draft and the Cavs can afford to be patient while he gets back to full health and gains a little weight. If the Cavs decide to go in another direction, Georgetown's Otto Porter and Maryland's Alex Len appear to be the top candidates to supplant Noel.
Analysis: According to sources, the Magic are still wide open. They say they have nine (gulp) players who they are considering. Michigan's Trey Burke was in this slot in Mock 3.0, but I'm hearing the Magic aren't sold on him as the second-best player in the draft. They might take him, but he's not an outright front-runner, despite the need.
The Magic are eyeing other young point guards such as Eric Bledsoe. If they make a trade, starting 2-guard Arron Afflalo will be the bait. Assistant GM Scott Perry (who helped Afflalo in Detroit) doesn't want to give him up, but given where the Magic are as team, it might be the only way to trade for a point guard upgrade. If Afflalo goes, the 2-guard position opens up. Both Oladipo and McLemore would be upgrades long-term anyway. While McLemore is a better shooter, Oladipo's toughness, defense and leadership might be more appealing to a rebuilding team.
Analysis: The Wizards are sitting pretty at No. 3. The two players they really like -- Porter and UNLV's Anthony Bennett -- are both on the board here. The need help at both the 3 and the 4, and sources say their front office is split between them. Porter's versatility and his ability to affect the game without shooting the ball are major pluses on a team that already has several starters who like to score the ball. Bennett's ability to stretch the floor as a 4 is also appealing, as is his upside. Aside from Noel, many NBA GMs believe Bennett might have the highest upside of anyone in the draft. This one could go down to the wire, but I'm giving the edge to Porter because of the question marks around Bennett's injured shoulder.