Sonics Rising NBA Mock Draft, version 1.0

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

We ran our first mock draft, who went #1 and who is the most shocking pick?

Edited by Joanna Nesgoda

Welcome to the first ever Sonics Rising mock draft! This year the representatives are myself, Kevin Nesgoda, Chris Meirose, Carl Powers, Dontae Delgado and Mitch Northam. The names of the representatives were put into a randomizer along with the names of all 30 NBA teams. Each representative was issued 5 NBA teams that they would be responsible for. The draft order was determined solely by the teams' records (as of 3/10); no lottery was held. All real-world NBA trades are recognized. So, without further ado, here are the results:

The Milwaukee Bucks offered the #1 overall pick to the Boston Celtics in exchange for the #4 and #17 picks, as well as cash considerations, a deal the Celtics declined.

Team Representative Player Position School
Bucks_logo_medium
Chris Meirose Andrew Wiggins SF Kansas

Milwaukee has a number of needs, but SF is a glaring hole, and Wiggins can fill it for a long time to come. They are taking him based largely on potential, but he's shown that with some more experience and polish he could be the best player from a very deep draft in 2014.

Sixers_logo_medium

Taylor Bartle

Jabari Parker

SF/PF

Duke

Joel Embiid would be a wise pick here, but center is one of the few positions the Sixers have locked up for the future. Parker gives them options at both forward spots, and can be a running mate with Michael Carter-Williams or spot up and hit from outside.

Magic_logo_medium
Kevin Nesgoda Dante Exum PG/SG Australia This gives the Magic an extremely versatile player who can play positions 1-3 with ease. He's expected to grow another inch or two and should eventually fall into the SF spot. He won't be a LeBron- or Durant-type player, but he's definitely a guy who can help now and going forward.
Celtics_logo_medium
Dontae Delgado Joel Embiid C Kansas Embiid is the perfect fit for need and skill set. He is going to be elite on the defensive end, and has the physical tools to be a factor offensively. He fits next to Sullinger and will benefit from playing with Rondo right away. A potential steal with the projected first overall pick "falling" to number four.
Lakers_logo_medium
Taylor Bartle Aaron Gordon SF/PF Arizona The Lakers are a mess right now, and everyone outside of Kobe is dispensable. Gordon gives them an athletic wing who can defend and step out and hit from outside and can also play some stretch 4. The Lakers never stay down for long and Gordon could help them get better quickly.
Kings_logo_medium
Taylor Bartle Julius Randle PF Kentucky The Kings need a big man to play next to DeMarcus Cousins. Enter Julius Randle. Randle gives Sacramento a legit 1-2 punch down low and should provide an extra scoring punch.
Jazz_logo_medium
Dontae Delgado Gary Harris SG Michigan State Marcus Smart would be an ideal upside pick, but Harris is a true SG and has the type of all-around game (think a potential of Arron Afflalo) that can fit in with any backcourt.
Nuggets_logo_medium
(from New York Knicks)
Kevin Nesgoda Doug McDermott PF Creighton You want the new Mr. Fundamental? Here you go. The Nuggets need a guy who can do it all from the four spot and this is it. McDermott would be a safe pick.
Cavaliers_medium
Taylor Bartle Noah Vonleh C/PF Indiana Cleveland needs help pretty much everywhere other than point guard. Anderson Varejao is missing more and more games every year, Anthony Bennett is a bust, and Tristan Thompson is a bench player posing as a starter. Vonleh could provide some front court help immediately.
Bobcats_logo_medium
(from Detroit Pistons)
Mitch Northam T.J. Warren SF NC State This is probably the only time in my life in which I'll be able to act as Michael Jordan. It's just a mock draft, but this is a milestone in my career (/takes time to enjoy moment /wipes tears from eyes). Anyway, here's hoping I'm a better GM than His Airness. Charlotte would like to get a scorer at either the SG or SF position with this pick. With McDermott, Gordon and Harris off the board, Charlotte is happy to pick up T.J. Warren from just up the road at NC State. Not many know about Warren because, well, NC State isn't very good, but Warren has improved his "old man" game this season and has blossomed into an All-ACC talent and a first-round pick. Warren's basketball IQ is out of this world and he should be a solid contributor at the next level with his ability to attack the rim, score and rebound.
Sixers_logo_medium
(from New Orleans Pelicans)
Taylor Bartle Nik Stauskas SG Michigan The only position where Philadelphia doesn't have a young player in the starting lineup. Stauskas brings a perimeter threat to spread the floor and let MCW and Parker work.
Magic_logo_medium
(from Denver Nuggets)
Kevin Nesgoda Montrezl Harrell PF/C Louisville Montrezl Harrell is a tough, big-bodied front court player who can play next to Nikola Vucevic or back him up off the bench. Harrell rebounds, blocks shots, and shoots a very high percentage from the floor. The only real downfall for him is his free throw shooting. Like most bigs coming out of college, that seems to be a problem and he'll have to work on that aspect of his game.
Timberwolves_logo_medium
Carl Powers Patric Young PF Florida This may be a little bit of a stretch but Young is a decent scorer and offensive player and he works exceptionally hard on defense, which is exactly what the T-wolves need in a big man. He was a highly sought after high school recruit who ended up sticking around after a disappointing freshman year, but he has started for the Gators for the last three seasons. He also comes from a school known for producing NBA defenders like Noah, Brewer and Horford.
Suns_logo_medium
Chris Meirose P.J. Hairston SG/SF NBADL A nugget hiding just out of view from most people, Hairston has put in a very good year honing his game. He arrives to the NBA with a few character questions, but I don't think they surface under the watchful eye of Jeff Hornacek. Hairston has shown his ability to score and create his own, and Phoenix could use someone with that skill set. At 6'6" and 220 lbs, he might be a bit small for an NBA SF, but he can fill a few minutes there as needed in a pinch.
Hawks_logo_medium
Carl Powers Marcus Smart SG OK State
The Atlanta Hawks don’t have a whole ton of talent behind Kyle Korver at shooting guard and I think that Marcus Smart is the most talented shooting guard in the draft. He has flashes of brilliance and his attitude could be a jump start to a team that lacks personality. He is a very competitive player and he could play right away backing up Korver in the current Eastern Conference.
Bulls_logo_medium
(from Charlotte Bobcats)
Chris Meirose Adreian Payne PF Michigan State The Bulls need offense and Payne can bring that, having shot 40% from 3pt range this season for Michigan State. His shooting ability keeps him from competing for space under the rim with Noah/Gibson/Boozer (if he stays on the team). His size gives Thibs some options on the defensive end as well, and I can see him really growing in the Bulls defense after learning under Izzo for four years.
Celtics_logo_medium
(from Brooklyn Nets)
Dontae Delgado Dario Saric SF/PF Croatia Celtics go for a mix of upside and instant contributor. Saric has a ceiling of Mike Miller or Chandler Parsons. He can push the ball in transition, post up smaller players, and (of course) shoot. He's carrying his team overseas, showcasing a basketball IQ and potential beyond his years. He may have some issues adjusting to NBA speed; he also isn't the quickest player. He gives the Celtics depth and versatility in the frontcourt.
Suns_logo_medium
(from Washington Wizards)
Chris Meirose Jerami Grant SF Syracuse Grant is not as polished as the Suns might want, but he's too good to pass here. Having Len already, this fits another need, though not immediately. I think Hornacek may well be one of the better suited coaches to help Grant refine his offensive game for the NBA.
Bulls_logo_medium
Chris Meirose Zach LaVine PG/SG UCLA The Bulls are ecstatic that Levine falls this far and they get an explosive combo guard to back up D-Rose and fill time at the SG as well.
Raptors_logo_medium
Mitch Northam Tyler Ennis PG Syracuse So like, nobody took Tyler Ennis yet? My guess is that the Raptors won't have the opportunity to draft their fellow Canadian this late in the draft, but if he is still on the board, the Raptors would be foolish to pass on him. Toronto currently sports Kyle Lowry and Greivis Vasquez at the point guard positions, but it's unclear whether either of those guys will still be there next year. The Raptors can bring in Ennis, who is a creative and unselfish floor general. Ennis lacks the athleticism and speed that most look for in a point guard, but he takes care of the ball and is always looking to set his teammates up to score.
Grizzlies_logo_medium
Chris Meirose Rodney Hood SF Duke It pains me to be forced to pick a Duke player, but the Griz would be thrilled to get Hood here. They need a SF to replace their current 3-headed mess (see Miller, Mike for evidence A). Hood has a nicely refined offensive game that could fit in with Memphis very quickly.
Mavericks_logo_medium
Taylor Bartle Kyle Anderson SF UCLA Shawn Marion is on his last legs. Bringing in Anderson would give the Mavs a filler at the SF position who can score from every part of the court. He's also able to share the ball, averaging 6.6 assists this season.
Jazz_logo_medium
(from Golden State Warriors)
Dontae Delgado James Young SF Kentucky Young has star potential, can slash to the basket and is a knock down shooter, even if he has somewhat struggled from outside this season. Utah needs dependable outside scoring and Young is a bit of a steal this late in the draft.
Bobcats_logo_medium
(from Portland Trail Blazers)
Mitch Northam Willie Cauley-Stein C Kentucky Charlotte has a ton of options with this pick, but I think they go big and take Cauley-Stein from Kentucky, providing some depth behind Big Al Jeff at the center position.
Clippers_logo_medium
Dontae Delgado Wayne Selden SG/SF Kansas Set at almost every position, the Clippers can afford to take a risk this late in the first round. Selden has superstar potential, and reminds me weirdly of Eric Bledsoe. He's the type of strong and explosive player that can bring intensity, ball handling, off-the-ball and on-the-ball abilities. His shooting is better than Bledsoe's, though his defense is not quite as destructive.
Rockets_logo_medium
Mitch Northam Semaj Christon PG Xavier The Rockets could use a point guard like Semaj Christon. He's a big time playmaker, quick with his hands and feet, plays the passing lanes well and is a solid finisher at the rim. He'd likely come off the bench is his first year as a Rocket, and probably contribute more than what Jeremy Lin gives them.
Heat_logo_medium
Kevin Nesgoda Jusuf Nurkic C Bosnia The Heat could use a banger up front who is swift of foot. Listed just shy of seven feet tall, Nurkic is about 280 pounds and an absolute load underneath the hoop. He has great rebounding instincts, soft touch with his hook shot and has terrific footwork, which allows him to spin either way in the post. He does not shy away from contact and seems to welcome it. Even with the up and down style that Miami likes to run, Nurkic won't have a problem keeping up.
Suns_logo_medium
(from Indiana Pacers)
Chris Meirose Nick Johnson PG Arizona Johnson can contribute off the bench right away, and will have the time to develop his game in Phoenix without the pressure of leading the team right away. He has added perceived value by being a "local" college product.
Okc-thunder-logo_medium
Carl Powers Jordan Clarkson SG Missouri Oklahoma City doesn’t have a whole lot of needs at the moment, but Thabo Sefalosha, Caron Butler and Derek Fisher are all on the last years of contracts and drafting a big guard like Clarkson would be ideal if they chose not to bring back one or all of these players next season. Clarkson is a good ball handler and a decent offensive player who could fill roster holes on the cheap for the luxury tax-averse Sam Presti.
Spurs_logo_medium
Chris Meirose Clint Capela PF/C Switzerland Capela is a project, and there's no way to hide that fact. But with a 7'3" wingspan, and the burning need to find a replacement for Tim Duncan, Capela is worth a shot here. The hope would be that, under Pop's tutelage, in 2-3 years Capela could be a significant contributor for the Spurs.

This concludes our mock draft. Let us know what you think in the comments section. Version 2.0 should be out after the tournament.

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