The 2022 NBA Draft kicked off with a bit of suspense in hearing the first name called. With smokescreens abound the Orlando Magic surprised many by selecting Paolo Banchero with the first overall pick. Chet Holmgren and Jabari Smith were next to hear their names called by the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets respectively. While some teams have impressed early on with their selections, others have made questionable moves throughout the night.
Here are our losers from draft night.
Loser: Sacramento Kings
All eyes were on Kings with the number four overall pick and they arguably did not disappoint in their selection. Jaden Ivey was the presumed lock to head to Sacramento, but the Kings opted for fit in drafting Keegan Murray over Ivey, arguably the best player available. Murray may fit seamlessly in the Kings’ immediate plans, but time will tell whether Sacramento once again passed on the better overall talent.
Loser: Portland Trail Blazers
Sharpe is the mystery prospect of this draft class and offers a high-risk high-reward opportunity for Portland. If his excellent athleticism and superb shooting ability translate as advertised then many will look back on this selection with praise. But it’s difficult to understand how Sharpe will fit in the Blazers’ immediate timeline which is to build a competitive roster around Damian Lillard.
Loser: Cleveland Cavaliers
Agbaji was the first senior to hear his name called and fills a clear need in Cleveland with his outside shooting ability. His struggles to create a shot off the dribble and for others were reasons for him being ranked lower on draft boards and thus this pick comes as a bit of a surprise. This is a fit pick by all means but Cleveland could very well have opted for drafting the best talent available.