The NBA Draft Lottery was on Tuesday evening, and it will help dictate the long-term future of numerous young men.
The Orlando Magic, who already have a rock-solid young core, won the lottery. They’re expected to draft Gonzaga center Chet Holmgren. However, not everyone has Holmgren atop their big board.
ESPN draft analyst Jonathan Givony released a mock draft following the announcing of the lottery order, and he has the Magic taking Auburn forward Jabari Smith, whom many compare to Kevin Durant.
His size and shooting are on par with the superstar former MVP, but if the development is there is still in question. Holmgren then goes No. 2.
Following those three, you could probably guess is — Duke forward Paolo Banchero. Banchero could easily have the draft’s highest ceiling. Iowa’s Keegan Murray to Sacramento and then Purdue’s Jaden Ivey to Detroit round out the top five.
That said, the saga with Shaedon Sharpe will draw to a close as well. He’s projected to go No. 6 to the Indiana Pacers.
As for Kentucky Wildcats that actually played for Kentucky, TyTy Washington, who seemed like a top-10 lock to start the season, has fallen outside the lottery per Givony’s projections.
Washington is set to go No. 16 to the Hawks. The postseason put Atlanta’s playmaking weaknesses in the brightest light, so Washington could be a welcome addition to Atlanta.
As a freshman at Kentucky, Washington averaged 12.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game. It was a solid season for the star combo guard, but he didn’t quite show that lottery ceiling.
Like with Tyrese Maxey though, do not count him out, as the star potential is in there. It will just need to be developed well, and Atlanta could be a perfect place to bring out the best in Washington.
Keion Brooks, Jacob Toppin and Kellan Grady were not projected to be picked as they test the draft waters.