While the NBA Draft isn’t quite as famous as the NFL Draft is, it is still a very important part of the league. While finding legitimate stars is always a difficult thing to do, it is here where the majority of big names are found. Furthermore, the draft has given rise to many iconic players and moments. Who could forget the fact that Michael Jordan wasn’t picked first in his class. Or that LeBron James, as a kid out of high school at the time, went first and never looked back from it. Or that Kevin Durant was the second pick in his draft, after the oft-injured Greg Oden.
NBA franchises can change, for the better or the worse, with the draft, and this year’s will be no different. With the first pick, the Phoenix Suns, of which irrelevance has become the norm over the last few years, picked Deandre Ayton. At 7 ft 1 in, the Bahamas center has been compared to the likes of David Robinson. However, the guy can shoot from outside really well, like so many players in the modern Space Jam-like NBA. It’s truly frightening, and if he continues to improve his shooting, he could be an even taller version of Durant. Very terrifying. Unfortunately, the Suns are going to need someone to play with him at some point to make a run.
The two other most irrelevant teams in the draft went two and three. The Sacramento Kings picked Marvin Bagley second, while the Atlanta Hawks did indeed select Luka Doncic out of Slovenia with the third. However, in what is going to likely be one of the legacy moves, they decided to trade him to the Dallas Mavericks for their fifth pick, Trae Young, and a first round pick for next year. One in hand is better than two in the bush, so the Hawks are taking a big, big gamble here with a player that many believe to be the biggest prospect in the class.
Elsewhere, teams were filling out their rosters, hoping to get better overall. One such team was the Cleveland Cavaliers, who found themselves in the eighth spot. They took Colin Sexton, a point guard out of Alabama, and he instantly took to the media to try to talk LeBron into staying in Cleveland and playing with him. Whether this works or not is a big question, but that is what happens so often in the draft. A good pick, at least in the eyes of players, could be enough to sway a superstar to your team.