The 2020 NBA Draft is approaching and despite the coronavirus pandemic, we need to start looking at prospects and where they might land. After the NBA Draft Lottery takes place, teams will know where they’re selecting in the first round. Even though we don’t know where each team will pick, there’s no reason we can’t start speculating where prospects will end up on draft night. In this segment, we’ll be looking at each top prospect and breaking down their best and worst possible destination in the 2020 NBA Draft.
Nico Mannion, G, Arizona
Best possible destination: Washington Wizards
Like his teammate Josh Green, Mannion saw his draft stock drop throughout his first season at Arizona. He might still be a lottery pick after struggling in conference play though. Mannion excels when creating shots for others and averaged 5.3 assists per game as a rookie. But his shooting ability seemed questionable after a poor stretch caused him to finish shooting 39.2 percent from the field and 32.7 percent from deep. Mannion might not be a Year 1 starter, but his ability to score on spot on jumpers and off the dribble could make him a valuable contributor to an offense. His lack of prototypical length and strength could hurt him at the next level though.
John Wall is nearing a return, but that doesn’t mean Washington shouldn’t secure an insurance policy. Bradley Beal has had to take over as a scorer and facilitator in Wall’s absence. Mannion could back up Wall playing spot minutes here and there and has much more upside than Shabazz Napier, Ish Smith or Jerome Robinson. Mannion would work well with pure shooters like Beal and Davis Bertans and wouldn’t be expected to carry a heavy workload from the jump. If his shooting prowess returns, he could become a great floor spacer.
Other ideal landing spot could be the Orlando Magic. They need a more capable scoring guard to play alongside Markelle Fultz and are set to lose Michael Carter-Williams and D.J. Augustin this offseason in free agency.
Worst possible destination: Brooklyn Nets
The Nets could move some pieces ahead of Kevin Durant’s return, but have plenty of ball-handlers and scorers. Kyrie Irving is the presumptive starting point guard barring injury and averaged 27.4 points and 6.4 rebounds per game before being sidelined by a shoulder injury. Caris LeVert and Spencer Dinwiddie also run the offense at time and were double-digit scorers without. Irving and Durant are both ball dominant scorers. Dinwidde and LeVert can also go for 20 points on any given night. Mannion’s scoring won’t be needed much, and Brooklyn’s main offensive options are perimeter players who create for themselves.