Lamelo Ball was once the projected No. 1 pick in 2020 NBA Mock Drafts. Now, he’s sliding down the boards a bit.
Despite not playing a single minute of NCAA action, Lamelo Ball hasn’t struggled to make himself recognized as one of the top prospects in the 2020 NBA Draft. Being the son of LaVar Ball and the brother of New Orleans Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball helped the youngest Ball brother become a household name in the upcoming draft.
But don’t get it mistaken — Ball’s talent warrants the hype. At a point this year, many assumed there’s a real shot Ball could become the No. 1 overall pick in the draft. Lately, though, the Illawarra Hawks guard has seemingly slid down a few draft boards.
Now, The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor has Ball sliding outside of the top five in his latest mock draft, which includes intel from league sources.
A Trade for the Wizards
Right now, the Washington Wizards possess the No. 9 overall pick in the draft. In O’Connor’s mock, the Wizards move up to No. 6 by trading the ninth pick, No. 36 pick, and Troy Brown Jr. Then, with the sixth pick, the Wizards snag the boom or bust Ball.
“Wizards general manager Tommy Sheppard has said he’d be interested in moving up. . . Here’s what Sheppard told me back in July: “This draft is looked at by several people as being weaker than recent years. We see it as a great opportunity. This might give us an opportunity to swing for the fences, take a wild card, buy a lottery ticket, if you will.”
The word wildcard is a good way to describe a player like Lamelo Ball. At 18-years-old, Ball has proven he belongs on the court with a bunch of pros outside of the States. Whether his flashiness can transition to the NBA court or not remains to be seen.
Regardless of the question marks, Ball will get drafted rather quickly this month. Falling outside of the top five might be a bit of a shocker — but don’t expect the youngest Ball to fall completely out of favor with NBA teams.
Justin Grasso covers the NBA for The Sports Daily. You can follow him on Twitter: @JGrasso_