2016 NBA Mock Draft

By Thomas Mooney
Jun. 23, 2016

The NBA Draft is tonight! After a historic season in which the LeBron James did what he said he would do and brought the Cleveland Cavaliers their first ever championship, it's time to welcome the newest class of rookies to the association. The top two selections are all but official, but the rest of the draft has plenty of intrigue and we should be in for plenty of surprises. This mock draft will NOT include trades, and descriptions of the prospects and the picks will be given for the top 10 selections. I hope you enjoy the mock and feel free to comment what you think below!

Ben Simmons has reportedly been promised by the Sixers to be the #1 selection
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

1. Philadelphia 76ers: Ben Simmons - F - LSU
Reports surfaced the other day that the Sixers have promised Ben Simmons that he would be selected with the #1 overall pick, so no surprise going into the draft at the start. He provides them with an all around athlete and rangy defender. He needs to get better at his shooting, but he has every other skill. (Alternates: None)

2. Los Angeles Lakers: Brandon Ingram - F - Duke
The Lakers won't get Kevin Durant this summer, so why not draft the guy that could end up being him in 3 years? He's the best scorer in the draft not named Buddy Hield and has insane length. Just needs to get stronger and he could be a force in the league. (Alternates: None)

3. Boston Celtics (via BKN): Marquese Chriss - F - Washington
A guy that's had his stock rise the most in the draft process, Chriss is a super-athletic player, can shoot the 3, and has a somewhat decent post game. The only knock on him is his aggressiveness on the defensive end which can easily be changed under head coach Brad Stevens. (Alternates: Dragan Bender, Kris Dunn)

4. Phoenix Suns: Dragan Bender - F/C - Croatia
Last years mystery big man was Kristaps Porzingis, and this year it's Dragan Bender. Many scouts say that he's better than Porzingis was at this time last year. At 7'1'' he's mobile and an improved 3 point shooter, it's hard to get a read on him though because of his lack of playing time. He's the biggest unknown of this draft, but his potential could be too big for a franchise in the state that Phoenix is in to pass up. (Alternates: Marquese Chriss, Jaylen Brown)

5. Minnesota Timberwolves: Jamal Murray - G - Kentucky
I've been a huge Jamal Murray fan ever since I saw him take over at the Pan-American games when he was just 17 years old. He's a pretty good ball handler and an improving playmaker, but where his specialty lies is his scoring. He can create off the dribble and drive to the basket, he is a good 3 point shooter and isn't afraid to take the big shot. They would be able to start him alongside Rubio or even have Murray replace him if they feel the need to trade him this summer. (Alternates: Buddy Hield)

Buddy Hield averaged 25 ppg his senior season at Oklahoma
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

6. New Orleans Pelicans: Buddy Hield - G/F - Oklahoma
The Pelicans need somebody to take the pressure off of Anthony Davis. They could go with Kris Dunn to eventually replace Jrue Holiday if they feel like they need to move on, but I think they take Hield if he's available. He was the best scorer in the country last season and he could step in and start right away due to Eric Gordon's disappointing tenure and impending free agency. (Alternate: Kris Dunn, Jamal Murray, Jaylen Brown)

7. Denver Nuggets: Jaylen Brown - G/F - California
At 6'6'' 220, Brown has the prototypical size of a modern day wingman to go along with his 7 foot wingspan. He's a reliable jump shooter and has the physical tools to be a reliable defender in today's game. He won't be the focal point of your offense but he can be a good contributor. (Alternates: Buddy Hield, Jamal Murray)

8. Sacramento Kings: Kris Dunn - G - Providence
Dunn is a player that many have rated as the best guard in this draft class, so getting him at 8 would be a steal for the Kings. They're likely to move on from Rajon Rondo, and that will definitely happen if Dunn falls.

9. Toronto Raptors (via NYK): Domantas Sabonis - F - Gonzaga
The Raptors are one of the teams in the top 10 looking to move it in a trade, but if they decide to keep it, I like Sabonis as the pick. He's shown to have great footwork in the post which should help on both sides of the ball, and in his extended minutes as a starter he's improved his shooting percentage from outside. He likely won't be a star in the league, but if he's even close to what his dad was in the league, he'll be worth the pick. It's too bad that the Raptors get an extra top 10 pick in a bad draft year. (Alternates: Skal Labissiere, Jaylen Brown, Deyonta Davis)

10. Milwaukee Bucks: Timothe Luwawu - G/F - France
The one thing that the Bucks desperately need is more outside scoring. If the Bucks indeed go with their plan of playing Giannis more at the point this season, they'll need another shooter. Luwawu improved his outside shooting to 36% last year and he has the length that the Bucks are continuing to look for with a 6'11'' wingspan. (Alternates: Jakob Poeltl, Skal Labissiere, Wade Baldwin)

Skal Labissiere (Kentucky) was projected to be a top 5 pick before his underwhelming freshman season
Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

11. Orlando Magic: Skal Labissiere - F - Kentucky

12. Atlanta Hawks (via UTA): Furkan Korkmaz - G/F - Turkey
Atlanta acquired the 12 pick in the trade that sent George Hill to Utah and Jeff Teague to Indiana.

13. Phoenix Suns (via WAS): Deyonta Davis - F - Michigan State

14. Chicago Bulls: Wade Baldwin IV - G - Vanderbilt

15. Denver Nuggets (via HOU): Denzel Valentine - G/F - Michigan State

Denzen Valentine (Michigan State) was the 2015-16 National Player of the Year
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

16. Boston Celtics (via DAL): Jakob Poeltl - C - Utah

17. Memphis Grizzlies: Demetrius Jackson - G - Notre Dame

18. Detroit Pistons: Henry Ellenson - F - Marquette

19. Denver (via POR): Malachi Richardson - F - Syracuse

20. Brooklyn Nets (via IND): Dejounte Murray - G - Washington
Brooklyn acquired this pick in a trade with the Indiana Pacers in which they sent forward Thaddeus Young.

21. Atlanta Hawks: Juan Hernangomez - F - Spain

22. Charlotte Hornets: Malik Beasley - G - Florida State

23. Boston Celtics: Ivaca Zubac - C - Serbia

24. Philadelphia 76ers (via MIA/CLE): Cheick Diallo - F - Kansas

25. Los Angeles Clippers: Taurean Prince - F - Baylor

26. Philadelphia 76ers (via OKC/DEN/CLE): Caris LeVert - G - Michigan

27. Toronto Raptors: Diamond Stone - F/C - Maryland

28. Phoenix Suns (via CLE/BOS): DeAndre Bembry - F - Saint Joseph's

29. San Antonio Spurs: Thon Maker - F - Congo

30. Golden State Warriors: Damian Jones - C - Vanderbilt

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