2019 NBA Mock Draft: Post-NBA Draft Combine Edition

2019 NBA Mock Draft (Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images)
2019 NBA Mock Draft (Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

SG/SF. keldon johnson. 20. 18. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. Kentucky. player

Pre-Draft Lottery Projection: 16 (-4)

A victim of an underwhelming freshman season, Keldon Johnson sees himself slip into the hands of the Celtics. With Boston’s stockpile of first-round picks, they’ll just keep grabbing lottery ticket players in hopes one hits the jackpot.

While not quite having the year he expected, Johnson’s three-point shooting was relatively reliable, hitting 40.6 of his shots from downtown before conference play. Ah yes, conference play.

While going against the SEC’s best Johnson struggled mightily and his stock has taken a hit accordingly. However, it would be foolish to toss aside a promising player simply because a bad stretch of games. The Celtics are a team that can afford to take that gamble.

Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. SF. KZ Okpala. 21. Stanford. player. 149

Pre-Draft Lottery Projection: 29 (+8)

G League MVP or not, Abdel Nader should not be a major rotational piece of a team with its eyes set on the Larry O’Brien Trophy. Paul George was forced to play a league high 36.9 minutes per game last season, bumping up to an insane 40.8 minutes per game during the playoffs. The dude needs a break.

KZ Okpala could be just the guy to fill that role. Although an unfinished project, Okpala’s skillset has drawn comparisons to a more athletic Trevor Ariza. Okpala’s freak athleticism lends itself well to the Thunder’s rapid pace of play (rated out as the sixth highest tempo team in the league).

While Okpala is still working out the technical sides of his game, the intangibles are clearly there and KZ’s good ball handling skills should help limit the amount of silly mistakes during another run at the title.

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