Philadelphia, Milwaukee and tons of other teams can also start replenishing their roster in next Thursday's
This is all bizarrely unfamiliar for the Lakers, who haven't had a lottery pick since 2005 (
Unfortunately for the Lakers, they won't have a top-three pick next week.
The triumvirate of Joel Embiid,
The next seven players selected will all have some minuses, but enough pluses to be top-10 picks in a nicely deep draft.
There are two point guards to watch — Dante Exum and
This draft matters like few others to the Lakers, who didn't have their first-round pick last season (
In other words, they can't afford to mess this one up.
NBA Mock Draft Selections:
1) Cleveland: Joel Embiid,
2) Milwaukee: Andrew Wiggins, Kansas, small forward, 6-8, 200. Yeah, the 10 minutes he spent at Kansas didn't exactly live up to the hype, including a four-point disaster in the Jayhawks' second (and final) NCAA tournament game. But his potential makes him slightly more intriguing than the next candidate.
3) Philadelphia: Jabari Parker, Duke, small forward, 6-8, 235. The poor
4) Orlando: Dante Exum, Australia, point guard, 6-6, 196. He didn't have the quality-of-opponent college experience of the top three picks and chose his spots as far as team workouts. But if he's anything like point guard
5) Utah: Noah Vonleh, Indiana, power forward, 6-10, 247. He turned heads at the draft combine last month. He had the largest wingspan and biggest hands of anybody, helping the
6) Boston: Julius Randle, Kentucky, power forward, 6-9, 250. The
7) Lakers: Aaron Gordon, Arizona, power forward, 6-9, 220. Three power forwards in a row? The Lakers take Randle if he's available after an impressive workout Tuesday but might have to settle for the elite athleticism of Gordon, who couldn't buy a free throw at Arizona (42%) and needs a ton of work on mid-range jumpers.
8) Sacramento: Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State, point guard, 6-3, 227. The
9) Charlotte: Nik Stauskas,
10) Philadelphia: Doug McDermott, Creighton, small forward, 6-8, 218. The 76ers will have already picked up a slasher and now they can get a shooter. McDermott might be the second coming of
13) Minnesota: Rodney Hood, Duke, small forward, 6-9, 208. With the
14) Phoenix: Adreian Payne, power forward, Michigan State, 6-10, 239. The
15) Atlanta: K.J. McDaniels, Clemson, small forward. 6-6, 196. Does a little bit of everything for a team that needs a lot of everything.
16) Chicago: Elfrid Payton, Louisiana Lafayette, point guard, 6-4, 185. If
18) Phoenix: P.J. Hairston,
19) Chicago: Jusuf Nurkic, Bosnia, center, 6-11, 275. If
20) Toronto: Tyler Ennis,
21) Oklahoma City: James Young, Kentucky, small forward, 6-7, 213. The
22) Memphis: Jerami Grant, Syracuse, small forward, 6-8, 214. A solid rebounder who could be an effective NBA player if he worked on his outside shot.
23) Utah: Zach LaVine, UCLA, point guard, 6-6, 181. Has a great vertical leap but is considered a project who needs more basketball experience.
25) Houston: T.J. Warren, North Carolina State, small forward, 6-8, 220. Was third in the NCAA in scoring last season (24.9) but played questionable defense.
26) Miami: Mitch McGary, Michigan, center, 6-10, 260. Here's a chance for the
27) Phoenix: Clint Capela, Switzerland, power forward-center, 6-10, 215. Another shot for the Suns to fix that frontcourt.
29) Oklahoma City: Cleanthony Early, Wichita State, small forward, 6-7, 209. More depth for the Thunder, which really needs it.
30) San Antonio: Jordan Adams, UCLA, point guard, 6-5, 209. Whoever gets drafted by the