Finally, the 2016 NBA Draft is upon us.
Now, we get to watch as around 60 young men get the opportunity of a lifetime to be drafted into the NBA. We also will get to see as many as five former Kentucky Wildcats hear their names called and their NBA dreams realized.
Jamal Murray, Skal Labissiere and Tyler Ulis are poised to become the latest first-round selections in the John Calipari. We also may see senior Alex Poythress hear his name called in Round 2. That's also the scenario in play for former UK big man and NCAA champion Kyle Wiltjer after finishing his career at Gonzaga.
In the meantime, ESPN's Chad Ford put out his 10.0 Mock Draft, the final projection of how tonight's draft will play out. As has become a popular scenario in recent weeks, Murray goes fifth overall to the Timberwolves to team up with fellow Wildcat Karl-Anthony Towns.
5. Minnesota Timberwolves: Jamal Murray
The Wolves are also exploring trades. Tom Thibodeau has two young building blocks with Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns. Surrounding them with young veterans who can get them playoff experience is key. However, the Wolves have also struck out in finding deals for a talented, young veteran and may be forced to make the pick.
Minnesota seems to be down to three players strongly in the mix at No. 5: Dunn, Murray and Hield. I get the sense that Dunn is their top target, if he's there. If he's not, there's a pretty solid split in the front office between Murray and Hield. Both are elite shooters. Murray is younger and more versatile. Hield is a better athlete, and Minnesota believes he has more defensive upside than Murray, an important key for Thibodeau.
After Skal has been projected to go in the 10-12 range for much of the past month, Ford has the Haitian big man falling to the Celtics at 16th overall.
16. Boston Celtics (via Mavericks): Skal Labissiere
The Celtics will be hoping that they don't have this pick. They are shopping it hard. If they do keep it, international players are an option, but so is a draft-and-stash D-League guy.
Labissiere could go as high as No. 9 to the Raptors. If he slides, I bet Danny Ainge will be tempted to take him. The skills he has at his size are so enticing. On the other hand, Ainge loves toughness and we never really saw that on the court at Kentucky from Labissiere.
As for Ulis, his reported hip issue continues to make him slide into Round 2 in Ford's projection. The good news is he lands in a great situation with the Clippers, where he can be mentioned by All-Star Chris Paul, not to mention head coach Doc Rivers, who has a history of developing and coaching great point guards.
33. Los Angeles Clippers (via Nets): Tyler Ulis
If Ulis were three inches taller and 30 pounds heavier, he would've been a lottery pick, but his size hurt his draft stock. Still, Ulis has an elite feel for the game.
After that, neither Poythress nor Wiltjer are projected to be drafted in Ford's final mock.