2019 NBA Draft: If We Called the Shots…


This brief article takes a look at who we (the royal we) would take in the 2019 NBA Draft if we (myself and Ilia Shatashvili) were running all 30 NBA franchises, with the caveat being that there’s no trading back allowed. Let the games begin.

1. New Orleans Pelicans 

G: Zion Williamson. Next question.

I: Zion Williamson. CBSR would never lie.

2. Memphis Grizzlies

G: Ja Morant. He scratches my Iverson itch.

I: Ja Morant. Heard there was a job opening with the Grizzlies at point guard.

3. New York Knicks

G: Jarrett Culver. He outplayed R.J. Barrett at MSG back in December and gets it done on both ends of the court.

I: Bol Bol. No guts, no glory.

4. New Orleans Pelicans

G:Brandon Clarke. Defense still wins championships.

I: Jarrett Culver. Great fit next to Jrue, Lonzo, and Zion. Trade Ingram.

5. Cleveland Cavaliers

G: R.J. Barrett. Barrett can’t fall past this point.

I: R.J. Barrett. Good value here if he drops.

6. Phoenix Suns

G: De’Andre Hunter. No need for more chefs in the kitchen. Let Book cook.

I: Darius Garland. Like his fit with Booker.

7. Chicago Bulls

G: Coby White. A fine fit in the backcourt next to Zach LaVine.

I: Coby White. Bulls get their point guard.

8. Atlanta Hawks

G: Cam Reddish. Boasts enough upside to legitimize this selection.

I: Cam Reddish. Trae will get Cam back on track.

9. Washington Wizards

G: Darius Garland. Garland is a good pick here regardless of whether Bradley Beal is traded or not.

I: Sekou Doumbouya: Wizards opt for highest upside.

10. Atlanta Hawks

G: Goga Bitadze. The most well-rounded and best center prospect in the class.

I: Goga Bitadze. Great fit next to Collins.

11. Minnesota Timberwolves

G: Grant Williams. Would make KAT’s life easier on both ends.

I: Brandon Clarke. Covington and Clarke make a venus fly trap.

12. Charlotte Hornets

G: Bol Bol. Is there anyone besides Anthony Davis who could pull this off?

I: De’Andre Hunter. Safe pick and immediate contributor.

13. Miami Heat

G: P.J. Washington. Fits the Miami mold.

I: P.J. Washington. Everyone has him going here.

14. Boston Celtics

G: Sekou Doumbouya. What do the Celtics have to lose at this point?

I: Nickeil Alexander-Walker. Ainge will hope he is this year’s SGA.

15. Detroit Pistons

G: Cam Johnson. Shooting, shooting, shooting – just what the doctor ordered.

I: Romeo Langford. Add a creative scorer.

16. Orlando Magic

G: Nickeil Alexander-Walker. A bit boring but very #onbrand.

I: Nassir Little. A little risky but worth a shot for Magic here.

17. Atlanta Hawks

G: Nic Claxton. Hawks have had plenty of time to evaluate the Georgia big.

I: Kevin Porter Jr. Go for upside here.

18. Indiana Pacers

G: Romeo Langford. Think local, act local.

I: Tyler Herro. Take a shot on this talented shooter.

19. San Antonio Spurs

G: Nassir Little. Spurs should take a small leap of faith if he’s available.

I: Jaxson Hayes. Pick the dropping big before he drops more.

20. Boston Celtics

G: Jaxson Hayes. C’s snag another free-falling center a-la TimeLord last year.

I: Cameron Johnson. Take the shooter and let him shoot.

21. Oklahoma City Thunder

G: Matisse Thybulle. Perimeter defense and three-point shooting, i.e. exactly what OKC needs.

I: Chuma Okeke. Continue surrounding Rus with defenders.

22. Boston Celtics

G: Chuma Okeke. Worthy first round pick despite injury.

I: Keldon Johnson. Going for scoring upside here.

23. Memphis Grizzlies

G: Kevin Porter Jr. A good upside play at this stage of the draft.

I: Grant Williams. Grizzlies get a steal here.

24. Philadelphia 76ers

G: Carsen Edwards. Provides a much-needed three-point shooting spark.

I: Matisse Thybulle. Their Covington replacement.

25. Portland Trail Blazers

G: Mfiondu Kabengele. Even with Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins, Portland could use another big who can space the floor a bit and defend.

I: Darius Bazley. Add some versatility at the 3/4.

26. Cleveland Cavaliers

G: Tyler Herro. Cleveland needs to address spacing concerns.

I: Luka Samanic. Got plenty of time to wait on his development.

27. Brooklyn Nets

G: Keldon Johnson. A wing that plays real hard feels right for Brooklyn.

I: Mfiondu Kabengele. Fits right in when Jarrett Allen is in foul trouble.

28. Golden State Warriors

G: Talen Horton-Tucker. Even if the Warriors were healthy, a young wing with two-way upside would be the move here.

I: Nicolas Claxton: Should be able to contribute major minutes immediately.

29. San Antonio Spurs

G: Rui Hachimura. Spurs should get the most out of Hachimura.

I: KZ Okpala. A nice ball of clay for their development staff to mold.

30. Detroit Pistons

G: Dylan Windler. The second coming of Jumpin’ Joe Ingles.

I: Rui Hachimura. A nice scoring option at this spot.

31. Brooklyn Nets

G: Luka Samanic. Nets nab another international sleeper.

I: Talen Horton-Tucker: The RHJ replacement.

32. Phoenix Suns

G: Eric Paschall. Villanova Wildcat dynamite defenders reunited.

I: Ty Jerome. A safe floor general.

33. Philadelphia 76ers

G: Ty Jerome. TJ McConnell with less scrap but more size and shooting.

I: Carsen Edwards. They could have used him in the playoffs.

34. Philadelphia 76ers

G: Luguentz Dort. High-arcing three-ball helps the cause.

I: Dylan Windler. Provides floor spacing and passing.

35. Atlanta Hawks

G: Zach Norvell Jr. Never met a shot he didn’t like. Airballs be damned.

I: Jontay Porter. With so many picks they can be patient with his health.

36. Charlotte Hornets

G: KZ Okpala. Enough upside to be a worth a look this late.

I: Luguentz Dort. Powerful athlete and engaged defender.

37. Dallas Mavericks

G: Daniel Gafford. Better idea than bringing back DeAndre Jordan.

I: Daniel Gafford. They need rim protection.

38. Chicago Bulls

G: Admiral Schofield. Big combo forward who gives it all he’s got.

I: Isaiah Roby. Versatile forward that can pass, score, and defend.

39. New Orleans Pelicans

G: Jontay Porter. Terrific training staff.

I: Admiral Schofield. Tough-nosed and ready to play.

40. Sacramento Kings

G: Isaiah Roby. Potential floor-spacing 4 who could fit well next to guys like Harry Giles and Marvin Bagley.

I: Deividas Sirvydas. Productive Euro with shooting and size.

41. Golden State Warriors

G: Shamorie Ponds. A little bit of Skip to My Lou meets Kenny Anderson.

I: Joshua Obiesie. Stash and hope he develops his shooting.

42. Philadelphia 76ers

G: Louis King. Jersey-born wing lands close to home.

I: Shamorie Ponds. Need rotational guards with playmaking skills.

43. Minnesota Timberwolves

G: Bruno Fernando. Bruising big man who could be a decent backup.

I: Jalen Lecque. Enough athleticism here to justify the risk.

44. Miami Heat

G: Darius Bazley. Could be an intriguing small-ball power forward.

I: Eric Paschall. They can plug this versatile big into their rotation.

45. Detroit Pistons

G: DaQuan Jeffries. Detroit is placing a delivery order for all the wings.

I: Louis King. Can really shoot and not much else.

46. Orlando Magic

G: Justin Wright-Foreman. Small lefty guard with good wingspan (6-7) that the Magic might view as the next iteration of Isaiah Thomas.

I: Iggy Brazdeikis. He’s not afraid to take advantage of scoring opportunities.

47. Sacramento Kings

G: Terence Davis. Harrison Barnes opting out means the Kings would be wise to take a shot on the best wing available here.

I: Jordan Poole. Take their shot at the natural talent.

48. LA Clippers

G: Miye Oni. The Clippers won’t be the only team interested in Oni.

I: Zach Norvell. Trigger happy scorer that can get cooking.

49. San Antonio Spurs

G: Yovel Zoosman. Potential to be a serious sleeper at this point.

I: Yovel Zoosman. Stash and let him marinate in Europe.

50. Indiana Pacers

G: Ignas Brazdeikis. Pacers need more players who can space the floor.

I: Tremont Waters. Believe in his improving shooting.

51. Boston Celtics

G: Cody Martin. Capable playmaker and defender.

I: Naz Reid. Inconsistency plagued talented athlete.

52. Charlotte Hornets

G: Charles Matthews. The run on Michigan men continues.

I: Jordan Bone. Worth a flier on this fantastic athlete.

53. Utah Jazz

G: Jordan Poole. And so it ends.

I: Terence Davis. Can score and make plays, replacing Greyson Allen.

54. Philadelphia 76ers 

G: Dean Wade. Worth a look as a small-ball 4 who can space the floor.

I: Jalen McDaniels. Solid role player for a top heavy roster.

55. New York Knicks

G: Josh Reaves. Hard-nosed defender.

I: Charles Matthews. Someone that could play for the Knicks as a rookie.

56. LA Clippers

G: Jordan Bone. Elite athlete worth gambling on.

I: Bruno Fernando. Once a potential lottery pick, they will hope he commits to defense.

57. New Orleans Pelicans

G: Fletcher Magee. NOLA needs to inject some shooting into their veins.

I: DeQuan Jeffries. Add some toughness like they did with Kenrich last year.

58. Golden State Warriors

G: Alen Smailagic. Draft twitter seems to be speaking it into existence.

I: Alen Smailagic. From Santa Cruz to San Francisco.

59. Toronto Raptors

G: Terance Mann. Does a little bit of everything.

I: Cody Martin. Versatile defender.

60. Sacramento Kings

G: Justin Robinson. Maybe a better backup point guard than Frank Mason.

I: Sagaba Konate. Rim protection & energy.

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