It’s the end of July and we’re 24 hoursish away from the 2021 NBA Draft and Free Agency…wait what? Isn’t it just baseball season?
No you big “casual” fan, it’s the juicy part of the NBA steak time – so get your fork and knife and let’s dig in!
2021 NBA Draft Buzz…
This year’s NBA Draft is said to be one of the strongest in years and the depth of potential studs is causing the trade winds to blow like an F5 Twister with Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt upside down in the eye of the storm 48 hours away from the first pick Thursday night.
We clearly have tiers of strength like any other draft but the top 4 players are said to be good enough to be number one picks in your average draft.
The 2021 NBA Draft Lottery Order:
3. Cleveland Cavaliers
4. Toronto Raptors
5. Orlando Magic
6. Oklahoma City Thunder
7. Golden State Warriors
8. Orlando Magic
9. Sacramento Kings
10. Memphis Grizzlies (via New Orleans trade 7/26)
12. San Antonio Spurs
13. Indiana Pacers
14. Golden State Warriors
Players leading the top tier and consensus 1-4 mock draft order picks are is as follows:
Cade Cunningham, Jalen Green, Evan Mobley & Jalen Suggs.
About every team is looking to move up in the first round since the top of the draft is so stacked and especially the top 4!
Several teams have multiple picks in this draft such as Houston, Orlando, OKC, Golden State & New York so the posturing amongst the order to make trades has the rumor mill going bananas.
A second tier of picks 5-7 has formed with:
Scottie Barnes, Jonathan Kuminga and James Bouknight but even that isn’t certain.
The strangest part of this draft is the talent being spread out so much that you can’t really differentiate between picks 8-20 so everyone wants in to get “their guy.”
Bold prediction: I believe we’ll have more trades in this 2021 NBA Draft that any other draft in NBA history.
2021 Draft Trade Rumors:
- Detroit has said they’re not settled on Cade but that’s just smoke, C’mon man!!!
- Houston is rumored to be high on Jalen Green but the real talk begins with Cleveland and Toronto who are feeling out teams and gauging how much they could get to trade down with many teams lining up at the door, namely teams such as Orlando and OKC armed with several picks and a desire to make waves to get their rebuilds going double time.
- Golden State, armed with picks 7 & 14 to trade with last years pick James Wiseman, are said to be “star hunting” to make one last ride like Fast & Furious with Steph, Klay & Draymond, which just like the movie series seems like they’ll never go away.
- Bradley Beal is tops among their wish list if he ends up requesting a trade with Damian Lillard seemingly holding firm in Portland, for now.
- We had a trade between Memphis (17th pick) and New Orleans (10th pick) swapping picks and several players in Jonas Valanciunas for Steven Adams & Eric Bledsoe just to get the pot stirred up a bit but don’t worry because there is more coming so go get the big spoon fatty.
Here are the remaining non-lottery picks/teams:
16. Oklahoma City Thunder
17. New Orleans Pelicans (via Memphis)
18. Oklahoma City Thunder
19. New York Knicks
20. Atlanta Hawks
21. New York Knicks
22. L.A. Lakers
23. Houston Rockets
24. Houston Rockets
25. L.A. Clippers
26. Denver Nuggets
27. Brooklyn Nets
28. Philadelphia 76ers
29. Phoenix Suns
30. Utah Jazz
- The non-lottery teams are all repositioning and the buzz is that both Oklahoma City and New York would like to move up, possibly by packaging their two picks.
The truth of the matter is that there are going to be some great picks dropping late in this draft and even into the second round so when that begins they’ll be a bunch of teams panicking and going stage 5 clinger on teams strapped with a multitude of picks.
We have a mixed bag of international flavor and upper classman making up the middle to late first round so it just comes down to what kind of soup do these GM’s like?
The underclassman with star potential (Cade, Green, Mobley, Suggs) obviously go first, the raw potential but unproven (Barnes, Kuminga, Bouknight) go next: then you have everyone else.