Welcome Violators to our 1st NBA Mock Draft for the 2020 class. Before we get into the madness, allow us to give you a quick breakdown of what to expect with our Mock Draft segments moving forward. There will be a total of FIVE installments for Mock Draft season, and we wanted to do something a little different. The final two installments will feature "What we would do" and "What we are hearing." Obviously, Draft season is a popular time for tomfoolery and rumors, so remember to be patient and understand that this is the time of the year in which you need to take every rumor with a large grain of salt.
These projections will take in a number of various factors. Make sure to read the analysis of each selection, as there will be information regarding what a specific team could decide to do if they choose another route. Below will be a link as well to that specific player scouting report. We hope you enjoy and as always, reach out to us for any feedback or if you simply just want to talk hoops.
Let us begin...
ANALYSIS: After winning the lottery, the Minnesota Timberwolves find themselves holding all of the cards to how this draft will start off. While some might want to entertain the idea of Minnesota going a number of various directions, including trading the pick...I'm not buying it. The T'Wolves and Georgia freshman Anthony Edwards seem like a perfect marriage in this scenario. Edwards, who is currently our number one overall player on our 2020 NBA Draft Board, has the most upside out of anyone in this draft class. In Minnesota, Edwards wouldn't have to be the go-to scoring option early on in his career, allowing him to develop and grow without the weight of being a franchise savior on his shoulders. A young core of Karl-Anthony Towns, D'Angelo Russell, Jarrett Culver, Josh Okogie, Naz Reid, and Edwards is an exciting group to build around.
ANALYSIS: I'll continue to be a believer that this selection will get traded until at least two hours AFTER the draft is completed. But until then, I promise to be a good sport and give you my two cents. While some might not agree with the fit, I think this would be a promising fit for both Golden State and Wiseman. GM Bob Myers has coveted a player of Wiseman's skillset numerous times over his tenure with the Warriors (Deandre Jordan in 2011 and Dwight Howard in 2013). Selecting Wiseman would allow for the Warriors to have an athletic prowess inside who will slide right next to Draymond Green and insert a serious spark into that Warriors starting 5. The idea of Steph running a pick and roll with Wiseman and then either throwing lobs or kick-outs to Klay Thompson is just simply erotic. If GSW doesn't target a big here, I would think they will target wing help. While Deni Avdija reportedly impressed in his recent workout with the Dubs and is someone who I think would be a sensational fit for Golden State, keep an eye on a couple of other names including Devin Vassell, Tyrese Haliburton, and even Isaac Okoro. If the Warriors want help on the wings, they could trade down for the names mentioned, with the exception of Avdija.
ANALYSIS: This is where I believe that things will get a bit interesting. Charlotte has a couple of young ball handlers in their stables already in Terry Rozier and Devonte' Graham, but the Hornets are still looking for franchise players to build off of. Not to take away from the ability of Rozier and Graham, but Charlotte is most likely going to be in position here to take the best player available (BPA) regardless of position. While LaMelo is going to have his fair share of question marks moving forward, the intrigue to add a potential franchise floor general at 6'7" is too juicy here. Ball will take some time to develop consistency on his outside shot, but the rest of the tools are legit. Playmaking, vision, and an overall impressive feel for the game...Ball will have Hornets fans excited in a hurry. Keep an eye on Obi Toppin here...
ANALYSIS: It seems as if things in Chicago are finally starting to turn around. With the Chicago Bulls recent hire of Artūras Karnišovas, the new era of Bulls basketball is underway. After shocking the world and swooping in to sign former OKC Thunder coach Billy Donovan to a deal, there's some excitement brewing in Chicago. If the Bulls can land Maccabi Tel Aviv forward Deni Avdija here at 4, that excitement might reach full tilt in a hurry. Avdija would be a fantastic get for this Bulls organization, as his playmaking ability and basketball IQ would fit perfectly with that young core in Chicago. Personally, I think that Chicago still needs another year to see what they have with the combination of Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter...so Chicago needs to add a wing here at 4 and Avdija would be a fantastic get.
ANALYSIS: This is where the NBA Draft could get absolutely chaotic. Cleveland is where things could get seriously interesting in this top 10, as they have one of the most confusing offseasons ahead of themselves of any of these teams. After spending consecutive years drafting point guards in the lottery with Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, I think that it's too early for the Cavaliers to give up on that experiment. So that leaves Cleveland with an interesting dilemma. On one hand, this team needs defensive help on the wings badly. Devin Vassell and Isaac Okoro could be welcomed additions here, but there's also a great need for some offensive firepower on this team. While this Cavaliers team is filled with a surplus of bigs, Toppin could provide a serious spark into that Cavaliers roster.
ANALYSIS: This would be a home run for Atlanta Hawks fans. The Iowa State guard is one of my personal favorite prospects in this draft class and is a darling of the Analytics world. Haliburton is thin framed and has a bit of a catapult shot from outside, but his production doesn't lie. In Atlanta, Haliburton would fit perfectly as an off guard alongside Trae Young. When you draft a player like Haliburton, you're getting a player that is going to make your team better in so many areas. Haliburton stands out with his phenomenal basketball IQ and vision. He's a playmaking wizard that might also be the king of hockey assists. After doubling down on wings in the lottery of the 2019 draft, as well as making a trade for big man Clint Capela during last year's deadline, the Hawks need to continue to add some nice players to their roster. Haliburton would be a great addition for Atlanta, as Kevin Huerter is the only off guard on the roster currently.
ANALYSIS: Much like Cleveland at 5, this is where things could also get interesting in the draft. I'm not going to sugar coat it Pistons fans...I'm rooting for Detroit to turn things around, but that roster is terrifying at this moment. Detroit needs help pretty much everywhere, and I'm intrigued by the upside of last year's first-round selection Sekou Doumbouya. While many might think that German point guard Killian Hayes might be the play here, I think Detroit will look to add some help on the wings. Detroit is in a rebuild position, and they need to add a nice piece moving forward. Isaac Okoro would seem to be a fantastic fit here. Okoro won't be relied upon early to carry the load offensively, but if the Pistons believe in his upside, he could turn into a solid piece for this organization moving forward. An athletic wing with a nose for dominating the defensive side of the ball, if Okoro can develop his offensive game on a consistent basis, he would turn into a fantastic get here for Detroit.
ANALYSIS: There's no secret that the New York Knicks will be heavily involved in meeting with some of the top point guards in this year's class. After spending last year's second overall selection on RJ Barrett, the Knicks need to add some more offensive firepower to the mix. Insert international prospect Killian Hayes who has been playing for Ratiopharm Ulm in Germany. Hayes is going to be a bit of a raw prospect, but the offensive upside with his game is more than intriguing. It wouldn't surprise me for the Knicks to also have their eyes on a couple of wings in this spot, including Florida State prospect Devin Vassell.
ANALYSIS: This would be an absolute dream fit for the Washington Wizards organization moving forward and if someone behind the Wizards wants Okongwu, they are probably going to have to get ahead 9th. The 6'9" big man will draw plenty of comparisons throughout the draft process to Miami Heat big man Bam Adebayo. While Okongwu isn't the passer that Adebayo is yet, their potential skill sets are extremely similar and Okongwu should become a fantastic asset in the modern NBA. After landing a nice young talent like Rui Hachimura in last year's lottery, the Wizards could take another step forward for their organization by adding a piece like Okongwu here.
ANALYSIS: This is where things could get a bit exciting in the lottery. After an impressive showing in the bubble, the Phoenix Suns are going to create a lot of excitement with this selection. While many have speculated that this obviously should be where the Suns target a point guard, I'm not convinced. This Suns team is in a fantastic position to add another key piece to the puzzle, and they should be looking to continue to add the best player available (BPA) here. Adding another lengthy wing with serious defensive potential would be a slam dunk. See what I did there? Florida State wing Devin Vassell is arguably the best wing defender in this class and has some serious offensive upside in his game. Pairing Vassell and Mikal Bridges together alongside Devin Booker would make Suns fans incredibly giddy.
ANALYSIS: The San Antonio Spurs will find themselves as another "wildcard" in the lottery of this draft. It wouldn't surprise me to see the Spurs go BPA here at 11, but with their surplus of young guards, it looks as if they will have their eye on adding to the frontcourt. There have been some rumors that the Spurs have had their eye on the bigs of this class, and I often wake up in the middle of the night convinced that Washington big man Isaiah Stewart would be an intriguing fit for the Spurs. If San Antonio is in on the bigs of this class, it wouldn't surprise me if they look to trade back a couple of spots. Florida State forward Patrick Williams would be awfully tough to pass up here and would give the Spurs organization an intriguing versatile weapon who is just scratching the surface offensively.
ANALYSIS: There's going to be a lot of discussions in Sacramento about the impending future of wing Buddy Hield. While that decision could play into the direction in which the Kings could go here at 12, Nesmith seems to be a perfect fit regardless. With a new GM running the show, who has a preference in analytics, don't be surprised for the Kings to take a long serious look at Nesmith here. Sacramento could look to add a big here as well to add next to Marvin Bagley III who I believe has earned himself one more year to take a step forward in his development.
ANALYSIS: Bey is going to be one of the underrated prospects to keep an eye on in the lottery. With ideal measurements for an NBA wing, and the ability to become an immediate 3-and-D asset, Bey would be a welcomed piece for a young New Orleans Pelicans roster who is definitely needing some versatility on the wings alongside Most Improved Player of the Year Brandon Ingram. Bey would give the Pelicans some versatility and basketball IQ, as well as a vastly underrated offensive game.
ANALYSIS: Boston finds itself with three selections as of now in this year's first-round (14, 26, and 30). While some might say it's extremely doubtful that Danny Ainge and co. keep all of there selections, don't be surprised if the Celtics at least try to add two more immediate pieces to the puzzle in this class. The Celtics will find themselves in a great position at 14 to add a nice piece to the roster. Personally, I'd love to see the Celtics address some big man depth as well as some offensive firepower on the wings. Alabam guard Kira Lewis Jr will be too enticing here at 14 to pass up and would give the Celtics some serious immediate depth off of the bench.
ANALYSIS: You're going to hear that Cole Anthony is going to have the widest range in this draft among Draft circles. While some continue to be a big believer in his potential, others are a bit concerned after a roller coaster of a freshman season for the Tar Heels. Anthony is a microwave floor general, who can get hot from everywhere and plays with a chip on his shoulder. Orlando has continued to say they believe in Markelle Fultz, but it would not surprise me if Orlando adds another weapon to the mold.
ANALYSIS: Portland is going to find itself in an interesting position in this class. With Hassan Whiteside's impending FA, it would make a lot of sense to see the Blazers look to add to their frontcourt here at 16. Personally, I'm a lot higher on Arizona wing Josh Green than some might be. Green has fantastic defensive ability and impressed me with his lateral quickness, which is why I think he might be the best on-ball defender in this class. Green would be a nice fit early on, as a player who could come off the bench and offer some immediate 3-and-D upside. There's an argument that his offensive game is still only just scratching the surface.
ANALYSIS: This is where things get interesting because Jalen Smith is a player who gaining some serious momentum throughout the pre-draft process. NBA teams are always going to covet the athletic big man mold who can potentially turn into a floor spacer. Smith has been the hot name in circles lately, and it's hard to ignore his game when you turn on the film. With the number one overall pick and 17 here, Minnesota is hopefully going to land two huge pieces to help them take steps forward.
ANALYSIS: While some have cooled on the upside of Tyrese Maxey, I think he's quickly becoming one of the more intriguing value picks in this first round. The former Kentucky product is a bit undersized for an ideal off guard, but has some intriguing handles to his game and can score it in bunches. Maxey will need to prove he can be a more consistent shooter, but if he falls out of the Lottery...some playoff-caliber team is going to jump at the opportunity. While Maxey gets a lot of recognition for his offensive upside, his defensive ability is something that has gained my serious attention.
ANALYSIS: The former TCU product has become a personal favorite here at Backcourt Violation, and it wouldn't surprise me to see Bane go much earlier than this selection. There's a lot to like about Desmond Bane, and he seems to a prospect in this class that has continued to steadily rise throughout the process. Bane offers versatility on the defensive side of the ball as a wing with good size (6'6") and the ability to defend multiple positions. He's also one of the best shooting options from outside in this class. With Joe Harris as a pending Free Agent, Bane could offer shooting range and a high basketball IQ on the wings to replace Harris.
ANALYSIS: This is where I believe things could get a bit crazy, especially for the Miami Heat and Pat Riley. Currently, this slot is becoming a fascinating spot in this draft. I could see Miami looking to add to their backcourt, with Goran Dragic getting up there in age and his pending FA. On the other side, adding another frontcourt piece makes a ton of sense as well, as the Heat need another piece with Bam Adebayo. But here's a CHAOTIC thought for consideration. Why not roll the dice on a potential gold mine selection here at 20. Jaden McDaniels was thought to be a potential top 10 selection in this class based on his scoring ability and freakish length. Although McDaniels had a bit of a disappointing season for Washington this year, there's still a serious argument to be made that some team can unlock the full treasure chest of weaponry that he has at his disposal. McDaniels needs to fall into the laps of an organization that can offer him some veteran guidance and time to install some confidence. With a number of veteran wings on the Miami Heat roster, this fit could be a fantastic gamble for the Heat.
ANALYSIS: With the Sixers desperately needing some more shooting to add around Ben Simmons, Stanford freshman Tyrell Terry makes a lot of sense here. There will be a lot of eyes on the Sixers this offseason, to see what type of pieces they try to add to the puzzle under newly hired head coach "Glenn" Rivers. With limited cap space, the Sixers are going to need to hit on this pick. Terry has reportedly added 20 pounds in preparation for the draft, which could improve aspects of his game in a hurry. Terry is going to be a name to monitor throughout Draft Night as he could be a surprise early selection. Here at 21, the upside with Terry is too enticing as his offensive game could insert some serious firepower in the Sixers rotation.
ANALYSIS: Denver is going to find themselves in a great position at 22 to potentially add a nice piece to the puzzle. With Paul Millsap turning 36 in February and scheduled to be a free agent, there have been discussions that the Nuggets want to bring Millsap back. Still, it's always a great time to look toward the future. The Nuggets have one of the more exciting futures in the West, especially with the value they found in 2019 second-round selection Bol Bol. An intelligent defender with fantastic passing ability on the offensive side of the ball would be fantastic value here. Xavier Tillman of Michigan State fits the bill. Tillman would offer a high energy defensive presence who could contribute immediately.
ANALYSIS: Would love to see Utah continue to add some firepower on the wings with this selection at 23. Insert Mississippi State product Robert Woodard II, a lengthy wing who can defend multiple positions and offer 3-and-D appeal early on. Woodard might not light up the scoring columns early on as a rookie, but his intangibles and feel for the game would be a welcomed addition to this Utah Jazz roster. Woodard shot 49.5% last year for Miss St, and posted a 42.9 3P%.
ANALYSIS: This is one of the more interesting prospects that you need to keep an eye on come draft night. Although I have Hampton positioned here at 24 to Milwaukee, it wouldn't surprise me at the least if he went earlier on draft night. Milwaukee could swing for the fences and add a potential homerun here in RJ Hampton. There's a lot of tools in the chest when it comes to Hampton's game that will have you intrigued. He has Ferrari-like speed in the open floor and there's some serious untapped potential in his offensive game. If a team is convinced that his shooting is coming along, Hampton's upside is scary. Milwaukee could look to add a more "immediate" contributor here, but Hampton's upside could also be too tempting to pass up.
ANALYSIS: Yes Draft fans, this is the moment you all waited for. While some are currently picking up their pitchforks and looking for our address to tell us we have "Poku" too low in this mock, I'm sticking to my guns here. There is NO DENYING the amount of ridiculous talent that Pokusevski has in his arsenal. He's 7'0", 195 pounds, runs the floor like a wing, and has vision like a point guard. The tools are there, but the competition level and frame are both red flags. While some might be quick to point to the fact that a player like Giannis put on serious weight over his NBA career, that is true...but it's not always the case with thin-framed prospects. Still, some NBA team is going to invest in the upside. Make no mistake, if you go all-in on a player like Pokusevski, you need to be prepared for him to be at least 2 years away from producing on an NBA level. For a team like Oklahoma City, who has 2,000 picks in the next couple of years...Aleksej could be worth the long-term investment.
ANALYSIS: On paper, this fit couldn't make more sense potentially for Draft Night. Boston finds themselves with three selections in the first round, and with a roster filled with a number of young talent, it would be a surprise to see the Celtics take three players that are expected to contribute immediately next year. Insert Argentina guard Leandro Bolmaro, who recently signed an extension with Spanish powerhouse FC Barcelona. The expectation is that Bolmaro will stay overseas, which would make all of the sense for a team like Boston. Bolmaro is a magician with the ball in his hands and is an extremely feisty high energy defender. Bolmaro needs to continue to develop his outside shot, and a potential draft-and-stash situation makes all of the sense here.
ANALYSIS: New York is going to find themselves in a good position on draft night to add two nice pieces to the puzzle. With the 8th selection in this mock, I had the Knicks adding some offensive firepower in Killian Hayes (Germany). Doubling down on adding to their backcourt wouldn't be a bad idea at all. Texas Tech freshman Jahmi'us Ramsey projects to thrive immediately as a catch and shoot weapon on the wings. Ramsey is just scratching the surface when it comes to his offensive versatility, but rated out in the 91st percentile (via Synergy) when it came to catch and shoot offense. Adding Ramsey as a floor spacer alongside RJ Barrett and potentially Killian Hayes will give the Knicks some intriguing offensive upside to build around. Ramsey also deserves some recognition for his defensive potential if he can become a more consistent defender.
ANALYSIS: The Lakers will find themselves in a position to add a solid piece here. With the current roster that the Lakers have, it wouldn't surprise me if they looked for an immediate contributor. Personally, I'm a bit higher on Cassius Winston than others might be, and this could be a fantastic fit for the Lakers and Winston. Winston might not have the upside that some of the other point guard prospects have in this class, but he's battle-tested and will be ready to go to war from day one. Winston's intangibles and outside shooting would be a fantastic fit with the current Lakers roster. Another name to potentially consider here could be Tre Jones of Duke if the Lakers look to add to their backcourt.
ANALYSIS: With Serge Ibaka scheduled to become a free agent this offseason, Toronto could look to add a younger piece here in the draft. Minnesota big man Daniel Oturu has been a popular name in draft circles, and his offensive upside and rim protection could be enticing value here at 29 for the Raptors. Oturu was one of the most productive big men in College Hoops last year, averaging 20.1 PTS and 11.3 REB per game. There will be questions about his role, as Oturu spent the majority of his collegiate career living in the post, but there's some upside with his game.
ANALYSIS: Personally, Stewart is one of my favorite prospects in this class. I'm a big believer in his talent, and it wouldn't surprise me if he goes somewhere in the mid to late lottery of this class. With every draft night, there's a prospect that seems to fall through the cracks and go a bit later than he may deserve. Take for example last year with Brandon Clarke who ended up falling into the Memphis Grizzlies laps at 21. Although the Celtics seem to be a big fan of Robert Williams, there's no reason why the Celtics can double down and add another big here at 30. With Enes Kanter scheduled to hit free agency, adding a physically imposing big like Stewart who plays with serious energy would be a fantastic fit for Boston. Stewart is a bit undersized at 6'9", but makes up for it with pure strength and a great feel around the basket.