Roughly six weeks into the 2021-22 men's college basketball season, NBA evaluators have formed impressions of many of the top prospects eligible for the 2022 NBA draft, with Gonzaga's Chet Holmgren and Duke's Paolo Banchero remaining at the top for most scouts. Other intriguing talent, including emerging Auburn freshman Jabari Smith, Purdue point guard Jaden Ivey and the top prospects in the G League Ignite, Overtime Elite and within the international game, are well-represented in the latest version of the ESPN 2022 NBA mock draft.
As the calendar gets set to flip to 2022 and conference slates begin to heat up across college hoops, the NBA draft order is also beginning to come into focus, highlighted by the teams in position for the NBA draft lottery. The struggling Detroit Pistons, who selected Cade Cunningham No. 1 overall last July, could again be in prime position to land the top pick should the mythical ping-pong balls bounce their way during the lottery.
Here's how ESPN's mock sets up after the first six-plus weeks of the college season, followed by evaluations of the top players ESPN has recently evaluated:
Note: The projected 2022 draft order is based on ESPN BPI draft projections as of Monday. The full 1-58 order also reflects picks owed and owned.