I had a lot going on this year and wasn’t able to complete my board before the draft or summer league. I did not change my board based on summer league or draft positions. This is mostly just for fun and will be something to look back on for the years to come.
2023 NBA Draft Big Board
My draft philosophies:
1. Draft for potential at the top of the lottery. NBA stars are hard to come by and anybody that is picking at the top of the lottery likely needs stars before they are anywhere near competing for championships.
2. Shooting is the most important attribute for guards and wings. If players can’t shoot at these positions, they need to be really strong in other areas to be able to find any role in the NBA.
3. After the initial high upside early lottery players, aim for role players that fill needs for your team. The best later picks are those with high floor and some upside, but there are only so many of those. Good teams are not just built upon star players, but complimentary teammates that hide those stars weaknesses and bring out their strengths. There is no better place to find cheap role players than the draft.
4. In the second-round teams can do what they want. Finding a player that makes an NBA roster long term is considered a win at this point. There’s nothing wrong with swinging for upside since most players don’t make it at this point but finding a role player is also a win.
5. Any player within a tier has similar talent and can be switched with another in that tier based on fit. Fit plays an important role in how players are used, how much opportunity they get, and how good they will become.
1. Victor Wembanyama- Huge center with massive potential. Elite shot blocker with the ability to move laterally and switch. Also has some high shot making potential but the 3-point shot and health will be the swing factors of just how good he can be.
2. Scoot Henderson- Huge upside to be an offensive engine. Elite finisher and passer which compound each other. Concerned about the shot and think his defense will be a liability although he has the tools to be good on that end. 3-point shot will be the swing skill. Form doesn’t look bad, and his mid-range game is promising, but if the shot does not come around he could be really limited. Has higher upside than Miller but also a bigger bust potential.
Comps: High end- Ja Morant Low end- Jalen Suggs
3. Brandon Miller- Big wing that is a good shooter and has some shot creation. Pretty good passer and defender as well. Not a great athlete so will probably not be a top end shot creator. Probably more of a 2nd or 3rd option than a 1st option on a good team. The off-court issues are obviously a concern as well.
4. Kobe Bufkin- Big combo guard that can score from all 3 levels and is a good passer and defender. Could be a star but will almost certainly be a good role player. Don’t like the fit next to Trey in Atlanta.
5. Taylor Hendrickson- Big, mobile forward that is a good shot blocker and has lateral quickness to switch as well. Will be a really good defender that can provide a 2nd shot blocker at the 4. Good 3-point shooter and lob threat. Not a strong rebounder or interior scorer. I like the fit next to Walker Kessler.
Comp: Jaren Jackson Jr.
6. Keyonte George- Combo guard that can score well from all 3 levels. Not a great athlete or a high-level passer but has some passing skills. Not a great defender but competes on that end. Should be a good scorer. Probably a 2nd or 3rd option on a good team.
Comp: CJ McCollum
7. Cam Whitmore- Big wing that is a great athlete. Has some potential as a shot maker. Is a good 3-point shooter. Good on-ball defender. Poor shot selection, passer, and off-ball defender. Overall questions about BBIQ. Needs to be in a good situation to thrive as more of a 3&D guy with some extra shot making. There seems to be some injury concerns I was unaware of and I don’t like the fit in Houston at all. Would consider dropping him to the next tier because of these.
Comp: Andrew Wiggins
8. Jarace Walker- Strong forward with good length. Really smart defender that can switch and protect the rim to a degree. Pretty good passer as well. Limited offensively otherwise being a poor finisher and 3-point shooter. Needs the right situation to thrive. Really like the fit in Indiana
Comp: Draymond Green Lite
9. Cason Wallace- Strong PG that can play on or off ball. Good defender and 3-point shooter. Can finish at the rim. Not much of a shot creator but can run the pick and roll. Can fit in pretty much any situation. Not a big fan of the OKC fit with all those ball guards already on the team.
10. Dereck Lively- Mobile center that can defend the rim and switch. Good lob threat and rebounder. Pretty limited offensively otherwise. Could fit well in multiple defensive systems.
11. Jordan Hawkins- 3&D guard without much shot creation. Really good shooter with movement shooting potential.
12. Dariq Whitehead- 3&D wing. Really good shooter with some shot creation. Alright defender.
13. Kris Murray- 3&D forward that should be a good role player.
14. Marcus Sasser- Combo guard that can score at all 3 levels and defend well. Not a great passer. Older player that is not a great athlete but should be a good role player.
15. Brice Sensabaugh- Big wing that can score at all 3 levels. Has tunnel vision and is not a good passer. Really bad defender.
16. Kobe Brown- Big, athletic 3&D wing with some shot creation. Older player without great athleticism. Some questions on if his 3-point shot will be good in the league as he was bad behind the arc his first few years in college.
17. Colby Jones- 3&D combo guard with some passing chops. Not a great athlete and struggles to get to the rim some.
18. Brandin Podziemski- 3&D wing
19. Jett Howard- Wing that is a good shooter but not much else.
20. Gradey Dick- Big forward that is a great shooter including some serious movement upside. Terrible defender and can’t do much besides shoot.
Comp: Duncan Robinson
Sleepers: These are second round or undrafted free agents that have the skills to make an NBA roster and become role players in the right situations.
Jalen Pickett- 3&D PG. Has an old school post up style. Like the fit in Denver.
Maxwell Lewis- 3&D wing
Julian Strawther- 3-point shooting wing
Ben Shepard- 3&D guard
Seth Lundy- 3&D wing
Adam Flagler- Backup PG that is a good shooter and passer.
Terquavion Smith- Combo guard that can score in bunches
Oscar Tschiebwe- Center that is a great rebounder
Jordan Miller- 3&D wing
Hunter Tyson- 3&D wing
D’Moi Hodge- 3&D wing
Ausar Thompsom, Amen Thompson, Anthony Black: Amen and Black both have broken shots. Ausar can’t get to the rim or shoot well. These guys have big red flags for where they were drafted.