Fanrag Sports Network recently released a new mock draft, and they have three Kentucky Wildcats landing in the first round.
De’Aaron Fox comes in at #5, going to the Orlando Magic.
Here is what they had to say about Fox:
Fox has the loftiest two-way potential of all remaining prospects, and he’d be a significant upgrade over Elfrid Payton. He’s hard to resist for a Magic franchise thirsting for someone to move the needle and offer hope for future playoff runs.
I’m not completely sold on Fox’s floor command yet. However, he has a knack for shaking opponents off the bounce and creating opportunities around the basket. While his jumper wasn’t statistically efficient last year, he has a smooth shooting motion to gain consistency.
Fox has an astronomical ceiling on defense as well. He didn’t meet a college opponent he couldn’t stay in front of, and his length is well-suited to check both 1s and 2s. With the right tutelage from Frank Vogel, he could be an elite NBA defender.
Two picks later, Monk comes in at #7 to the New York Knicks.
Monk is already an assassin behind the 3-point line, and he’s only 19 years old. He took 8.6 3-point attempts per 40 minutes at Kentucky, many of them way beyond the college arc; somehow he managed to maintain an efficient 40 percent clip, including 43 percent against SEC foes.
Given his off-ball instincts and skills, along with his tangible potential as a pull-up shooter, Monk could be a dynamic cog for Jeff Hornacek’s triangle-heavy offense. He and Kristaps Porzingis would stretch opponents across both sides of the floor.
If French combo guard Frank Ntilikina wows scouts during pre-draft scrimmages, he’ll lure the Knicks. For now, we’re projecting New York to take Monk and his microwave scoring skills.
Finally, forward Bam Adebayo has to wait a while but hears his name called at #28, heading west to the Los Angeles Lakers.
With Lonzo Ball in the picture, the Lakers now have plenty of creators or semi-creators in the rotation. Adebayo is more of a receiver, an energy player who doesn’t need a single play called for him.
Adebayo was a mountain of a man playing against boys last year at Kentucky. He’s ready to physically compete against NBA big men, especially as a rebounder and pick-and-roll hammer. It doesn’t seem his skill set will expand too much away from the rim, but L.A. isn’t expecting incredible versatility at No. 28.
Although Adebayo has superb foot speed and shot-blocking agility for his size, there’s plenty of room for defensive growth. Once he sharpens his footwork and weak-side timing, he’ll be a human wall.
In an interesting move, Hamidou Diallo is not included in the first round of this draft. With his elite athleticism, most are projecting Diallo to be a first round pick, but this mock draft says otherwise.
Hopefully Bam can perform well and maintain that first-round stock. And it’s looking more and more like Fox and Monk are locked into the top 10, and at least one of them should hear their names called in the top five.