Like every year before the NBA Draft, many Hexperts take out their crystal ball to predict how the evening will unfold pick by pick. But each year, there are more or less big surprises and yesterday, we were pretty well served. The proof with this little homemade Top 5.
Paolo Banchero in… 1?!?
About eleven hours before the Draft, the insider Adrian Wojnarowski was doing the clever thing by announcing the latest big trends compared to the Top 3: Jabari Smith Jr. in 1, Chet Holmgren in 2, Paolo Banchero in 3. Thanks for the spoiler Woj. Except that during the final minutes preceding the first pick of the Magic, everything suddenly took off. The gossip around a selection of Banchero at the buzzer by the Magic took the lead and the bookmakers who announced Paolo as favorite were able to play smart. Finally ? Banchero went in 1 to Orlando, Chet to Oklahoma City with the second pick, and Jabari to Houston with the third. At the start of the week and through Thursday, virtually all of the Mocks were showing the same order as the Woj yesterday, and virtually no one was seeing a talent of Jabari Smith Jr.’s level drop to third place in Houston. Further proof that anything can happen in the crazy world of the NBA.
It’s 3:30 p.m. he already has the top 3 lol eh go lazy https://t.co/79gR5lZrtg
— TrashTalk (@TrashTalk_fr) June 23, 2022
We were told big trades, we are still waiting…
It’s a surprise, and a slight disappointment. Woj (him again) had indicated on Wednesday that many transfers would take place on the evening of the Draft. Names like John Collins and Malcolm Brogdon came up quite a lot in the rumors. In the end we had a few trades, but not really the ones we expected. The Kings, Blazers and Wizards were notably among the teams to watch in trades, three teams wanting to become competitive again fairly quickly and at the same time possessing a pick in the Top 10 of the Lottery. A context conducive to transfers except that in the end, no one moved a finger. Sacramento kept its #4 pick to pick Keegan Murray, Portland kept its #7 pick after Jerami Grant traded Wednesday to pick Shaedon Sharpe, and Washington ultimately decided to go with Johnny Davis with its tenth pick. We were also expecting the Knicks at the turn with their #11 pick, but they decided to turn to… the Free Agency.
Jaden Ivey outside the Top 4
The great Draft specialists agreed on one thing in relation to the 2022 vintage: there is the Top 4, and then there is the rest. A way of saying that there is a small gap separating the four best prospects from the rest of the class. And knowing that we were expecting a podium composed of interiors Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren and Jabari Smith Jr. for reasons of fit, Purdue-trained guard Jaden Ivey was widely tipped to be the fourth pick. The uncertainty surrounding the choice of the Kings resided more in relation to the question of a transfer (as said above), but we did not think that they were really going to ignore the Ivey phenomenon at the very moment of the selection . Results ? “The Sacramento Kings select Keegan Murray, from the University of Iowa. » A sentence which today makes the happiness of the Pistons, who were able to recover Jaden right behind without even having to trade up. And a sentence that no doubt gave great pleasure to Ivey as well, who did not look very eager to join Sacramento. How can you blame him?
Jaden Ivey saw his career playing out on the Sacramento Kings then got saved from hell at the very last second i’d be crying tears of joy too.
— Reggie Saxx (@ReggiSaxx) June 24, 2022
AJ Griffin is not made to play the lottery
Every year, there are players who drop in the Draft compared to the initial projections. This year, it fell (among others) on poor AJ Griffin. Sometimes announced in the Top 10 in the Mocks and at the very least in the Lottery (Top 14), the prospect trained at Duke finally fell to 16th position with the Hawks. If Atlanta fans are undoubtedly happy to recover a physical winger and very good shooter who has evolved under the orders of the legendary Coach K, the main interested party probably hoped to finish a little higher, just for questions of greenbacks . A prospect selected in the tidy 6-10 (where Griffin was sometimes projected) will earn around $4-5 million in his rookie season, while Griffin will have to “settle” for $2.9 million with his 16th-place selection. The reason for his fall? Probably his injury history, having experienced several knee and ankle sores in high school.
Shams and Woj who announce two contradictory information at the same time
Shams Charania and Adrian Wojnarowski are the two most famous insiders in the NBA and are great specialists in spoiling you on Draft night. But last night, something pretty crazy happened: both announced the transfer of 13th pick Jalen Duren, but not to the same place. For Shams, head to the Knicks. For Woj, direction the Pistons. You’re probably wondering which of the two went wrong, and well, we can’t really answer that question. Because if Duren ended the evening well in Detroit, he had first made a stopover on the side of New York, the Hornets initially negotiating with the Knicks before the latter decided to send the young pivot to Michigan in the company of Kemba Walker. But in any case, it’s clearly collector’s item, especially since hardly anyone expected Detroit to recover Duren in the Draft.
Shams or Woj, someones lying for Jalen Duren pic.twitter.com/VW9jVnUDJ7
— Ted Buddwell 🏀🏈 (@TedBuddy8) June 24, 2022
We were expecting an active Draft ceremony, we were not disappointed. A #1 pick that changes at the last moment, Shams and Woj facing each other live, twists and turns, the Kings in their works… in short, it was very cool. A little extra blockbuster and it would have been perfect, but the many surprises were still enough to make our evening.