By Jacob Murphy
This week, KCOU Sports’ Jacob Murphy take an in-depth look at picks 20 through in 11 in the 2019 NBA draft. Jacob will finish off his three-part mock draft series with picks 10 through 1.
20- Keldon Johnson, Kentucky Fr.
Johnson came in to his freshman season with high expectations but was outshined by teammates Tyler Herro and PJ Washington. Johnson started slow and flew under the radar in draft boards. Johnson deserves all of the attention he can get. The 6-foot-6 shooting guard is deadly on the offensive side of the ball. He shot 38% from the three point line and averaged just under 14 points per game on the season. He can even be aggressive down low, as Johnson averaged six rebounds a game. Johnson can be inconsistent, but when he hits his stride he can put up 20 plus points in a hurry. If Johnson can find his stride and continue to get better down low on the offensive side, he can become one of the best shooting guards in the draft.
19- Grant Williams, Tennessee Jr.
Williams, the two time SEC player of the year is a one of a kind talent on the boards and inside the paint. The 6-foot-7 forward averaged just under 19 points and eight rebounds per game in his junior year. Williams improved every season at Tennessee, each year his points per game, rebounds per game, and free throw percentage all increased. Williams is so special on the offensive side of the ball. He can create a shot from nothing in the low post and has the footwork of a guard when he drives to the basket. He also has the potential to stretch the floor, as Williams shot 33 percent from three his junior year. Williams can be one of those rookies that plays like a veteran, and would be a great pick up for a playoff team.
18- Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Virginia Tech So.
Alexander-Walker shined in his sophomore year and boosted his draft stock as the 6-foot-5 guard averaged 16 points per game on a solid Virginia Tech team. One major strength for Alexander-Walker is his three point shooting, as he shot 38 percent from the perimeter over his two seasons at Virginia Tech. He has the ability shoot off the catch, off the dribble, and on the move. One thing that flies under the radar for Alexander-Walker is his passing. He has great court vision and could potentially handle an offense with a point guard that likes to play off-ball. When the defense collapses onto him, Alexander-Walker can drive to the hoop and finish through contact. Alexander-Walker could one day be a starting shooting guard on a contender if he gets stronger and becomes an even better shooter.
17- Goga Bitadze, Sagarejo, Georgia
Not a lot of people know about Bitadze, who is a 6-foot-11 center that is great around the rim. Bitadze would be a great fit on a pick and roll offense, as he is known for his ability to roll to the basket and finish efficiently. While Bitadze is not the strongest guy in the draft he can be sneaky athletic. Bitadze is also a great rebounder, which is a skill that can translate straight to the NBA. The mid-range shot has also improved, which could make Bitadze a threat from anywhere inside the perimeter. Bitadze is only 19 years old, and could potentially be a great draft and stash player. If we see him in the NBA, it will most likely be a couple years down the road.
16- Bol Bol, Oregon Fr.
Bol Bol is one of those guys that you don’t really have an idea on how he can impact an NBA team, but you know that his potential is through the roof. Bol Bol is of course the son of the late Manute Bol who was 7-foot-7. Bol Bol is not quite up there but he is a staggering 7-foot-2. What makes his size so special is his ability to spread the floor with his perimeter shooting ability. Bol did not shoot many threes his freshman season, but when he did he was money, he shot an even 52 percent on three outside shots a game. Bol stuffed the stat sheet at Oregon, averaging 21 points and just under 10 rebounds a game. With his size and potential, Bol might even find himself in the top 10 if a lottery team is feeling lucky.
15- Sekou Doumbouya, France
Sekou Doumbouya is a 18 year old 6-foot-9 power forward from France that will shock everyone in the draft with his skill set. Doumbouya has the ability to play like a guard; he has great athleticism and fluidity within his offensive game. He is lengthy and really gets going in transition; he can also finish at the rim and can even find his teammates when he needs to. While he shines driving to the basket, he also has the potential to become a consistent three point shooter. Although he doesn’t shoot much, he is not a disaster from the perimeter when he is left open. Doumbouya is another draft and stash guy just because of his age, but he has the potential to make the jump to an NBA team pretty quickly if he remains consistent.
14- Kevin Porter Jr., USC Fr.
Porter, a 6-foot-6 shooting guard is one of the most athletic players in the draft and deserves to be in the lottery portion of the first round. He can get down the floor in a hurry and has a few flashy dunks in his arsenal. He is exceptional at creating off of the dribble and can lose his defender in an instant. He also has the step back in his skill set, which is becoming more and more popular in today’s NBA. Porter can also stop on a dime and pull up for a mid range jumper. In conclusion, Porter has the defense on their toes every time he touches the ball on the offensive side. His ability to change directions and smooth shot release could make Porter a steal at the beginning of the lottery.
13- Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga Jr.
The 6-foot-8 forward started to shine at Gonzaga in his junior year, averaging just under 20 points and six rebounds per game. Hachimura is a special basketball player, as he was recognized as the 2018-19 West Coast player of the year. Hachimura really started to rise on draft boards in November, when he led the Zags past one seeded Duke to win the Maui Invitational. Hachimura is a huge defensive presence inside, and that was on stage vs. Duke, when he blocked RJ Barrett at the rim in the final seconds to win the game. While Hachimura hasn’t developed a three point shot yet, he is great inside and fit in any offense and if he has to he can create his own shot in so many different ways. Hachimura is a highly skilled basketball player and will make the transition to the NBA look like a breeze.
12- PJ Washington, Kentucky So.
Washington is one of those guys that when you look at him you immediately think of the NBA. The 6-foot-8 forward has a gigantic presence on both sides of the court from the beginning of the game to the end. Washington can do it all on the offensive side. He is able to play above the rim with his height and athleticism and is money from mid-range. When Washington is getting open looks around the elbow nobody can stop him. Not only can he shoot it from the high post but he can also pass which he demonstrated so many times in his sophomore season at Kentucky. Washington may have to adapt to the NBA as he is small for his power forward position. If he can learn to shoot the three ball we may see him listed as a small forward when he reaches the association. Washington leadership abilities make him stand out as he led his Kentucky team to an Elite Eight appearance. Washington would be an excellent fit for a young rebuilding team that is searching for a guy to lead for the next couple seasons.
11- Coby White, North Carolina Fr.
Coby White burst onto the draft scene after a stellar freshman season at North Carolina where he shot 35 percent from three and averaged 16 points per game. What makes White special is that on the surface he is a pure scorer but there is much more to his game. He does a great job of finding his teammates and setting them up for success. He can play well either on the ball or off the ball and can hold his own on the defensive end of the court. The 6-foot-5 guard is one of the quickest guys in the draft and has a one of a kind first step that allows him to fly by his defenders. White is a known three point shooter, as he can pull up in transition and is able to shoot off the catch as well. When the defense collapses White is able to get to the rim with his first step where he has the ability to finish over defenders with crafty inside moves. White also is great at drawing contact and getting to the free throw line, where he shot 80 percent throughout his freshman season. White also has possibly the best ability in the draft to shoot from NBA range, which can be a huge factor for NBA prospects. We often see players struggle with the change, but White will not be one of those guys. His quick release and range will separate him from other guys in the draft within their first NBA seasons. White would be an excellent fit in a predominately half court offense, as he is a threat to score from anywhere on the court.
Edited by Garrett Jones | firstname.lastname@example.org