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Zak Drapeau's NBA Mock Draft

Tomorrow night the NBA will hold the 2022 NBA Draft. This draft separates itself from others over the last decade due to the uncertainty of it's first couple picks. There are four prospects that are worthy of the #1 overall pick. While Jabari Smith is expected to go first, there are others that have the pedigree and talent to surprise everyone at #1.

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This mock draft will include two trades that I have mocked. The Denver Nuggets and Portland Trail Blazers will center a trade around moving Damian Lillard for Michael Porter Jr., Will Barton, Bones Hyland and picks. The second trade is between The San Antonio Spurs and Washington Wizards around Bradley Beal for Keldon Johnson, Devin Vassell and two first-round picks.

The NBA's draft lottery consists of the first 14 picks of the first round and that is where we will focus with draft reasoning profiles. Without further ado this is how we predict the 2022 NBA Draft will go tomorrow night on ABC and ESPN at 8 p.m. EST.

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#1 Jabari Smith SF/PF 6'10" Auburn

Orlando Magic

Quite possibly the best pure shooter in this draft and he stands at 6'10" tall, Smith is an amazing talent who will fit into Orlando's rotation nicely along their other young talent Anthony, Suggs and Carter.

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#2 Chet Holmgren PF/C 7'1" Gonzaga

Oklahoma City Thunder

The number one rated prospect this year is the 7'1" defensive anchor Chet Holmgren. The Thunder are looking for any help in their frontcourt and if Holgren falls to them at two it will be a match made in heaven.

#3 Paolo Banchero PF 6'10" Duke

Houston Rockets

The Rockets have maybe the best potential-filled core in the league with guards Jalen Green and Kevin Porter Jr. and center Alperen Sengun, so a long and athletic forward is the final piece missing form their puzzle. Not only does Banchero check every box on that list and has big-game experience from Duke and in the March Madness tournament.

#4 Jaden Ivey SG 6'4" Purdue

Sacramento Kings

The most explosive guard in this draft. At 6'4" his ability to get his head to the rim and dunk on larger defenders. The Kings have needed a backcourt player to pair with De'Aaron Fox for a while now and with Ivey, they will have one of the most athletic guard combos in the league, very similar to the pairing of Lillard and McCollum.

#5 Keegan Murray SF/PF 6'8" Iowa

Detroit Pistons

The Pistons are in their second year drafting inside the top-5 after their #1 selection of Cade Cunningham last year. Murray is a "three-and-D" player, and a very long forward. Murray is a project player and with Cunningham being the same age, will fit into Detroit's future plans very well.

#6 Jeremy Sochan SF/PF 6'9" Baylor

Indiana Pacers

Pacers need a Power Forward and Sochan is a great interior scorer that will give Myles Turner more freedom to focus on the defensive end.

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#7 Benedict Mathurin SF 6'6" Arizona

Portland Trail Blazers

The Trail Blazers are mocked to have acquired MPJ and Will Barton so to finish off their middle starters they need a small forward. Mathurin has been one of the biggest risers of draft stock since the NCAA tournament and his raw athleticism can make him a great starter in only a few years.

#8 Jalen Duran C 6'11" Memphis

New Orleans Pelicans (via Los Angeles Lakers)

Duran is a pure back-to-basket center who averaged over two blocks a game at Memphis. The Pelicans are an offensive-first team who would benefit form a rim protector.

#9 Dyson Daniels SG 6'6" G-League Ignite

Washington Wizards (via San Antonio Spurs)

The Wizards have been mocked to trade their star player Bradley Beal for mostly draft capitol so they need a new scorer desperately. Not only can Daniels score but he can distribute very well for his size to optimize the talent included in their rebuild.

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#10 A.J. Griffin SG 6'6" Duke

Washington Wizards

Griffin didn't get that much time to show his talent and potential at Duke averaging less than twenty-five minutes a game. The Wizards doubling up on guards is risky, but should assure a true starter emerges out of trading Beal.

#11 Shaedon Sharpe SG/SF 6'6" Kentucky

New York Knicks

Sharpe has one of the biggest falls of this draft, but not due to talent. The Knicks are the true winners because alongside Barrett's athleticism and Randle's footwork, Sharpe can be the best space creator and shooter on the team right away.

#12 Tari Eason SF 6'7" LSU

Oklahoma City Thunder (via Los Angeles Clippers)

This one is a bit of a reach for the Thunder. The second of their three picks inside the top thirty-four after drafting Holmgren needs to be a great fit, and with Gilgeous-Alexander, Giddey, Holmgren and Roby filling out the rest, a small forward is the need here.

#13 Mark Williams C 7'0" Duke

Charlotte Hornets

The Hornets have two of the next three picks and are clearly building around LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges at the moment. A tall rim protector with big game experience like Williams will allow these flashy scorers to focus on just that.

#14 Ochai Abgaji SG 6'5" Kansas

Cleveland Cavaliers

The last pick of the lottery is Abgaji to the Cavs. This selection was hard because the Cavaliers have been doing a nice job drafting over the last couple years and have a young roster with a lot of potential already. If they don't trade this pick to acquire capitol to trade for a superstar at another time, watch for Abgaji or Malaki Branham to add shooting depth.

#15 Johnny Davis SG 6'4" Wisconsin

Charlotte Hornets (via Bew Orleans Pelicans)

#16 Malaki Branham SG 6'4" Ohio State

Atlanta Hawks

#17 Ousmane Dieng SF 6'8" New Zealand

Houston Rockets (via Brooklyn Nets)

#18 Walker Kessler C 7'1" Auburn

Chicago Bulls

#19 TyTy Washington PG 6'3" Kentucky

Minnesota Timberwolves

#20 E.J. Liddell PF 6'7" Ohio State

San Antonio Spurs (via Toronto Raptors

#21 Kennedy Chandler PG 6'0" Tennessee

Portland Trail Blazers (via Denver Nuggets)

#22 Jalen Williams SG 6'6" Santa Clara

Memphis Grizzlies (via Utah Jazz)

#23 Dalen Terry SF 6'7" Arizona

Philadelphia 76ers

#24 Blake Wesley SG 6'5" Notre Dame

Milwaukee Bucks

#25 Justin Lewis SF 6'6" Marquette

Washington Wizards (via San Antonio Spurs)

#26 MarJon Beauchamp SF/PF 6'5" G-League Ignite

Dallas Mavericks

#27 Wendell Moore SG 6'5" Duke

Miami Heat

#28 Jaden Hardy SG 6'4" G-League Ignite

Golden State Warriors

#29 Nikola Jovic PF 6'10" Serbia

Memphis Grizzlies (via Utah Jazz)

#30 Jake LaRavia PF 6'9" Wake Forest

Portland Trail Blazers (via Denver Nuggets)

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Make sure to stay tuned as we continue coverage of the 2022 NBA Draft and Offseason all the way until the 2023 season.


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