Some talents will see their stock tank in the coming weeks, while others will climb to the finish line. This is partly a guarantee as it always happens during the draft season. This is also in part because, as this process continues, clarity will come as decisions to stay or leave are made, the combine is finished, and the lottery will be organized.
Thank you for your registration!
Keep an eye on your inbox.
An error occurred while processing your subscription.
Considering all the moving parts, it’s still a guessing game as to who will increase during this process. Heck, if the teams knew they would be out there trying to make promises to try to keep them away from the other teams. No one really knows. But this year’s class in particular has a few prospects that I could easily see as lifters throughout the process, and either because of the uncertainty surrounding their situation or because they stay a little off the radar, they are not yet where I think they could possibly rise on draft night.
I have highlighted these players below.
Josh Primo | Alabama | Fr. | SG | 6-6, 190
On a heavy roster in Alabama that won the program’s very first SEC championship, freshman Primo was a little used weapon. He averaged 22.4 minutes per night and averaged 8.1 points and 3.4 tables on 38.1% 3-point shots. Nice numbers, but not page break lottery numbers. Still, he’s 6ft 6in, has a 6-9 wingspan, plays a premium position, and won’t be 19 until December. He’s someone that teams who want to bet on long-term potential at the end of the first round should watch out for. As of right now, it’s still unclear whether he’ll return to college or stay in the draft, but if he does come back, next year’s draft prize could be a top-20 pick. So it would make a lot of sense for teams to look at its benefits and consider paying this year. The price will rise if he returns to college and tries to push for the 2022 draft.
- Projected draft range: 20-40
Trey Murphy III | Virginie | Jr. | SG | 6-9, 206
Seems like every few years the NBA routinely overlooks or underestimates a player from Virginia with solid pedigree or production – Malcolm Brogdon, Joe Harris, Ty Jerome, among others. Murphy III, a Virginia product who spent two seasons at Rice before switching to UVA, is no doubt ready to join this group. He’s a forward who hit 43.3% out of a 3-point range as a junior last season and is playing the game at a high level. And playing for the slowest team in college hoops, he still averaged 11.3 points and 3.4 tables per game last season. The combination of his height (6-9 with a reported wingspan exceeding 7 feet) and shooting ability makes him a fine prospect who, in the NBA, could be an option capable of stretching four. Add that to his defensive intelligence and overall high-level feel for the game, and he’s someone to whom teams are likely to be warm in the weeks to come, given the context of his situation last season and its projectability of the role play.
- Projected draft range: 25-40
Miles McBride | Virginie-Occidentale | Soph. | PG | 6-2, 200
After a second breakout season in which he averaged 15.9 points and 4.8 assists per game on 41.4% 3-point shots, McBride has caught the attention of NBA teams. He’s a shooter and a creator who can take difficult shots and occasionally gets up in great times. Plus, he’s a defensive workaholic who puts in a lot of effort and, at just 6-2, plays above his frame. He’s an NBA player. Whether he stays in the draft or comes back to college for another round, the myriad of ways he can generate offense will be an incredibly valuable asset to him in the pros and he has room for it. become a starting caliber guard in the league. This advantage could well propel him into the territory of the first round.
- Projected draft range: 20-35
David duc | Providence | Jr. | PG | 6-5, 205
Are you interested in a 6-5 point guard who finished in the Big East’s top four for points and assists per game last season? What if he shot 40.2% in the last two seasons at 3 points on 231 attempts? I feel like I’m on an island here, but David Duke from Providence is someone who is emerging as potential first-round material. He’s a little choppy because he’s older – 21 – and because he’s not the most explosive prospect. But the ability to shoot and generate an attack at its size from the main guard post is what NBA teams look for and need. He’s ticking enough boxes that, for now, he’s almost locked in to be drafted, and someone who I think could be on the cusp of a top-30 selection in the draft.
- Projected draft range: 30-40
Sandro Mamukelashvili | Seton Room | Sr. | C | 6-11, 240
We’ve seen firsthand this NBA season how incredibly valuable it is to have a 6-foot-11 center with above-average passing abilities with MVP leader Nikola Jokic. Although Mamukelashvili is not in the same perspective as Jokic, the parallels are tantalizing. He had a 20.7% assists rate last season (Cade Cunningham’s first pick was 20.4%). He was therefore a central part of the offensive creation of Seton Hall. He also showed some ability to space the ground and take down shots from a distance. This particular draft is pretty thin down the center, and there’s a dead zone in the second round where I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the teams tried to target Mamukelashvili as someone to bring in.
- Projected draft range: 40-60