NBA Draft – Instant First Round Reactions

By Zach Wilson & Matt Esposito

1. Minnesota Timberwolves – Anthony Edwards, Georgia

Matt – I’m rooting for Edwards. I’m nervous for Edwards. I’m nervous for the Timberwolves. I’m down with the Ant-Man nickname. I’m over pop culture’s obsession with cartoons. These are my thoughts.

Zach – I was wondering why the NFL went cartoon heavy this year… Guess it’s every sport? People are saying this draft reminds them of 2013, and in 2013 the number one pick was named Anthony. Hopefully Edwards’ career is a little different than the last guy.

2. Golden State Warriors – James Wiseman, Memphis

Should James Wiseman Be the #1 NBA Draft Pick? | SportsRaid

Zach – I guess they didn’t trade the pick after all. Wiseman’s amazing, but hasn’t played a game in over a year. Could he be the one who has to guard AD in the conference finals? Only time will tell. Prayers up to Klay Thompson.

Matt – This pick was wise…man. Golden State needs Wiseman to fill a limited role as a rim runner who can learn to switch onto the perimeter. Does this mean Kevon Looney is available? (Pssst, Danny Ainge)

3. Charlotte Hornets – LaMelo Ball, Illawarra Hawks

Matt – Great, all 2020 needed was more media clips of LaVar Ball talking all that nonsense. Personally, I love LaMelo’s passing but from what we’ve read he may have the maturity of a grapefruit. Most youngin’s do, however, so I won’t knock him too much. Good pick, Michael Jordan.

Zach – I need more Lavar Ball, I was missing him. I really like Charlotte’s young core, especially when you include their likely high pick next year. Another Jordan 3-peat on the rise!

4. Chicago Bulls – Patrick Williams, Florida St.

Zach – Was not expecting this! Can’t deny the athleticism though. Chicago has so many lottery picks on their roster, hopefully they can start to do something with all of them.

Matt – Can we get Diana Taurasi on an NBA team? Did I read about a Kawhi comparison for Williams? Are we sure this is what Chicago should have done? I’m out of questions.

5. Cleveland Cavaliers – Isaac Okoro, Auburn

Matt – Now this is a good pick. Cleveland needs defense more than Trump needs a judicial Hail Mary to win the election. Yeah, I got political, do something about it Zach!

Zach – I stay away from politics as hard as Cleveland stays away from good picks. No hate against Okoro, I won’t judge a player’s potential until I see him at the NBA level. I’m just not personally as high on their current young core as other people are.

6. Atlanta Hawks – Onyeka Okongwu, USC

USC center Onyeka Okongwu declares for NBA draft – Orange County Register

Zach – My favorite player in the draft, (you happy about my spelling of “favourite” that time?). This kid has real potential. Shout out to all the Mountain Dew bottles!

Matt -Producers at ESPN like, “Hey, your just achieved your wildest dream, tell me about losing your brother.” Don’t love the interview approach by the Worldwide Leader in Sports. I do love Onyeka though, and considering my Cs wanted him, this somewhat smells like a guy who could be on the move.

7. Detroit Pistons – Killian Hayes, France

Matt – What’s more likely, that Killian Hayes becomes the best point guard in this draft, or that he’s not even the best Killian in this draft?

Zach – I’m a big Killian Tillie fan, but I’m going to go with the first one. I don’t know much about him, but lefties are always great. Yep, that’s my analysis.

8. New York Knicks – Obi Toppin, Dayton

Zach – Ain’t no stoppin Obi Toppin, but Obi Toppin can’t do the stoppin. He really isn’t that bad of a defender, obviously a great offensive player. Still the Most Knick thing ever to draft a power forward.

Matt – I love it. New York needs culture guys and this dude just said, “After my first dunk…I knew there wasn’t going to be any more layups.” Okay maybe I paraphrased. But the Knicks need someone to run with RJ and work his tail off. Considering this fella didn’t have any D1 offers, I think we can say he has some great work ethic.

9. Washington Wizards – Deni Avdija, Maccabi Tel Aviv

Matt – The “J” is silent. Kinda the opposite of Django, right? I’ll end it here because I know Zach wants more space to show his love for Deni.

Zach – This is the perfect fit for Washington; allows him to get lots of minutes, while still not having to be the main ball handler. Ahv di uh… No idea how to do write out pronunciations, or whatever the word is for that.

10. Phoenix Suns – Jalen Smith, Maryland

Zach – Really good athlete, that’s for sure. He could play a solid role on a team that now has legit playoff hopes. Good off season so far for the Suns, maybe Booker will finally get his first taste of the post season.

Matt – Firstly, he seems like a gem of a person. Secondly, is he destined to be a small-ball five? Maryland legitimately ran him off of screens so he could be a four. Phoenix needs a plan for him and if it’s a good one, Smith could be the steal of the draft. Also…my Haliburton to Boston dreams are still alive…

11. San Antonio Spurs – Devin Vassell, Florida St.

Matt – And my Haliburton hopes stay afloat! Not gonna lie, Vassell’s shot scares me. Plus, our stat and analytics nerd Andrew Lawlor doesn’t like the projection for his three-point shot.

Zach – I don’t think I have anything negative to say about him. A guy who has a great improvement story, talks well, good player… A little good cop – bad cop, and I’m obviously the good one.

12. Sacramento Kings – Tyrese Haliburton, Iowa St.

Step Into My Office: Tyrese Haliburton - Wide Right & Natty Lite×2301/1200×800/filters:focal(1348×110:1900×662)/

Zach – Great suit, great player, this is a steal, and him and Fox are going to work well together.

Matt – I feel Haliburnt right now. Don’t talk to me. Okay great suit, whatever, I’m over it.

13. New Orleans Pelicans – Kira Lewis Jr, Alabama

Matt – Know what? I’m not over the Haliburton pick. After opting for Marvin Bagley over Luka Doncic, Sacramento should be fined a pick. On to New Orleans. We love Kira. Dude’s a blur and turns out being fast is good. Good fit with transition monster Zion Williamson.

Zach – Between Kira, Lonzo, and Zion, this team is going to be monstrous in transition. Maybe he’ll start with a potential Lonzo trade in the loom, wink wink, not reporting or using my insight or anything.

14. Boston Celtics – Aaron Nesmith, Vanderbilt

Zach – Fantastic shooter, and that’s all I really know about him. I’ll let Matt go off about his team now.

Matt – “Okay Matt, go off.” I wanted the C’s to trade up, but alas. I like the pick. Boston needs a low touch, floor spacing sniper who can defend a couple positions. Nesmith may be the best shooter in the class. Let it marinate, Boston fans. This could be a less outspoken Buddy Hield.

Matt – I’m old and need to be up by 6:00 AM tomorrow. Zach has it from here folks!

15. Orlando Magic – Cole Anthony, UNC

Scouting Report: Cole Anthony - Overtime Heroics

I guess I’m on my own. I don’t need to put my name anymore, right? This kid has bounce, and is a great scorer. I hope for the best for him.

16. Portland Trail Blazers – Isaiah Stewart, Washington

Isaiah is one name that I can never spell correctly, and maybe that’s because there are multiple ways of spelling it. I’ll blame it on that. One word to describe this guy: Beast! He is huge and will secure every loose ball.

17. Minnesota Timberwolves – Aleksej Pokuevski, Olympiacos

Technically going to the Thunder, and I hate that the draft does this. Is he the next Tingus Pingus? Seems like a project, but OKC sure has time.

18. Dallas Mavericks – Josh Green, Arizona

They needed a guard/wing defender next to Luka. He’ll likely get burn, and he gets to play next to the best young player in the league. He’s going to be a part of a team in the playoff hunt. PS. Arizona was my favourite college team to watch this year, so I’m happy for him.

19. Brooklyn Nets – Saddiq Bey, Villanova

So I guess he’s going to Detroit? Why do they make the draft so confusing! My saying with the draft is “Villanova players never fail.” Jay Wright always gets his guys ready for the league. I guess Landry Shamet has a chance to be head coach for a night now with the trade too?

20. Miami Heat – Precious Achiuwa, Memphis

Did I just read that his brother’s name is God’s Gift??? That’s elite! Hopefully Precious is Miami’s gift. I like this guy – animal, athlete, astronomical? I don’t know, just needed another “A” word.

21. Philadelphia 76ers – Tyrese Maxey, Kentucky

Tyrese Maxey - Men's Basketball - University of Kentucky Athletics

I know Rob, our resident Kentucky fan is jumping for joy. Philly needs a guy like this, who can play on and off ball. Anyone who can shoot helps the 76ers, and I believe he can shoot better than his college stats show. Shout out Danny Green who I still have faith in too.

22. Denver Nuggets – Zeke Nnaji, Arizona

This is the guy who I wanted for the Raptors. Safe to say I’m a little upset, but I still trust Masai. He is a great fit next to Jokic, and I really like this for Denver.

23. New York Knicks – Leandro Bolmaro, FC Barcelona

Can’t say I know anything about him, but i know some analysts who think he is extremely underrated. I hope so, because they just did the absolute most for him with that Argentinian cartoon.

Just learned he’s going to Minnesota… Nice.

24. Milwaukee Bucks – RJ Hampton, New Zealand Breakers

R.J. Hampton scored a season-high 14 points in a loss for NZ Breakers

Did his dad just throw his hat? I’m so confused, but I’m also laughing so hard. New Orleans has a lot of young talent, hopefully he and every other first round pick is sufficient for Jrue Holiday.

Never mind, he is now going to Denver…. Cool. This is live folks, no where else do you read reactions in real time.

25. Oklahoma City Thunder – Immanuel Quickley, Kentucky

Add another young guy to this OKC young core. He should balance off SGA really well. Great shooter, and that’s all I got to say. Should get my guy Rob on this piece for some Kentucky love.

Rob Shaw – I echo what Zach says about the shooting. First round seems early, but he is one of the most underrated shooters in the draft.

Zach back, he is on his way to New York, and that’s good, because that team needs some guards to balance out their roster.

26. Boston Celtics – Payton Pritchard, Oregon

Old man, Matt is asleep, so I get to talk about his Celtics. I don’t care if he’s just dribbling in his garage, that handle was tight. Solid pick I guess, he looks quick and shifty. I can’t cap, I don’t know much about him, but he’s got a nice highlight reel.

27. Utah Jazz – Udoka Azubuike, Kansas

This guy is huge, and a big presence. Should be a nice starting center once Rudy gets traded. I’m kidding… I think.

28. Los Angeles Lakers – Jaden McDaniels, Washington

LeBron didn’t want him, so he was traded for Schroeder, and then traded again to Minnesota. Minnesota is assembling one hell of a young core in this draft. This is the type of guy that you want to pair with KAT: a good defender, and a great athlete.

29. Toronto Raptors – Malachi Flynn, San Diego St.

I guess the last San Diego St. guy worked out pretty well for Toronto… I like this pick. Toronto loves defense, and I think it’s safe to say the defensive player of the year can play defense. With the potential of Fred VanVleet gone (I still don’t think so) and Kyle Lowry aging out, Flynn should be a good addition.

30. Boston Celtics – Desmond Bane, TCU

NBA Draft results 2020: Grizzlies acquire TCU G Desmond Bane via Celtics  with No. 30 overall pick - DraftKings Nation×2294/1200×800/filters:focal(1888×218:2414×744)/

This guy is deezed, Desmond Bane is a solid defender and a good shooter. But ya, huge muscles.

Published by Zach Wilson

A writer who is passionate about sports. @zachwilson50 on both twitter and instagram.

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