As the Golden State Warriors and Toronto Raptors battle it out for the Larry O’Brien trophy, the fan bases of the other 28 NBA teams look forward to something else: the 2019 NBA Draft. That means it is a very exciting time of year on the NBA calendar: mock draft season.
In ESPN’s latest mock draft, Jonathan Givony takes the reins for a full two-round draft. And if the real 2019 NBA Draft goes anything like Givony’s projections, the Sixers will walk away with quite a notable haul.
With Philly’s five picks at 24, 33, 34, 42 & 54, Givony slots in the following players respectively:
- Matisse Thybulle (F, Washington)
- Talen Horton-Tucker (SF, Iowa St.)
- Carsen Edwards (PG, Purdue)
- Jontay Porter (PF/C, Missouri)
- Quinndary Weatherspoon (SG, Mississippi St.)
The first thing to note here is that Givony doesn’t factor in possible trades with this mock, and it’s hard to see the Sixers using all five of their picks on draft night — they just won’t have the roster space to do so unless they plan on utilizing a bench full of rookies and sophomores — rather than packaging a couple picks to move up or kicking the can down the road by trading seconds in this draft for seconds in future drafts.
However, let’s say the Sixers were to walk away from draft night with three of these players — would that be a successful draft? Well depending on who the three are, I’d argue such a haul is a massive success.
For example, if the Sixers are to claim the rights to Matisse Thybulle, Talen Horton-Tucker and Jontay Porter, that would provide them one of the most NBA-ready defensive wings in the draft in Thybulle and two very talented, high-upside prospects still technically in their teens in Horton-Tucker (18.5-years-old) and Porter (19.5-years-old). Although Porter is coming off of not one but two ACL tears in the same knee, a fully healthy version of him is a top-10 pick. I’d happily slap an A+ on the draft if this were the outcome.
But the truth is, I’m not sure that’s a very realistic scenario. Givony has a good pulse on draft sentiments, but in some scouting circles, both Horton-Tucker and Porter are viewed as lottery talents. Hoping they both fall into the second round seems like a stretch.
The NBA Draft will take place June 20th, 2019. Until then, we’ll just have to use our imagination on how the Sixers might leverage their picks. But this mock makes my soul warm.
You can view Givony’s full mock here. (Subscription required.)
How would you grade the Sixers’ haul presented by Givony?
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