The 2015 NBA Draft is just over a week away, but there's still no certainty as to who goes No. 1 to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
It does look safe to assumed they've narrowed their options to Duke center Jahlil Okafor and Kentucky forward Karl-Anthony Towns. Most have Towns rated as the top prospect, but not enough so that Okafor isn't a legitimate threat to go No. 1.
In fact, ESPN analyst and Blue Devils alum Jay Bilas thinks Okafor is the better NBA prospect than Towns. He sees Okafor as the kind of force in the paint that can dramatically change an NBA franchise.
Upside: A dominant low-post scorer who is an excellent finisher around the basket. Great hands, outstanding footwork on the offensive end, and a great shooting touch to 15 feet. Very good passer, and a really good feel on the offensive end. Outstanding offensive rebounder.
Downside: Poor free throw shooter. Not a dominant rim protector or defensive presence in the lane. Limited in defending pick-and-roll action.
That's not to say Bilas doesn't like Towns, who is his No. 2-overall prospect due in large part to his versatility and shot-blocking ability.
Upside: Offensive versatility, he can post up and go over either shoulder or step away and hit a perimeter shot or drive the ball. Excellent rebounder on both ends of the floor, and a very good rim protector and shot-blocker. Does more things well than Jahlil Okafor, but is not as dominant in one area. Excellent free throw shooter, hitting over 80 percent.
Downside: Downside: Needs to get stronger to get and hold position in the paint.
Okafor, who averaged 17.3 points and 8.5 rebounds a game in leading Duke to the national championship, is looking to complete the rare double-double of winning a title and going No. 1 in the draft.
As for Towns, who averaged 10.3 points and 6.7 rebounds a game in 21 per game in 2014-15, has a much higher ceiling on offense and is more advanced defensively than Okafor.
Whoever Minnesota take,s they're certainly getting a player who could turn them into a future title contender, something they've rarely been in the franchise's long history of mostly losing.
Other notable players in Bilas rankings included Justise Winslow (5), Willie Cauley-Stein (8), Devin Booker (10), Trey Lyles (13), Tyus Jones (21), Andrew Harrison (36) and Dakari Johnson (38).