2022 NBA Mock Draft V.7
With 2022 NBA Draft night now just two weeks away, the No Ceilings crew got together and did another two-round mock draft to get more psyched up for June 23rd.
The journey to the 2022 NBA Draft has been filled with plenty of pitfalls and late-night draft film viewing sessions. The race is nearly run, but there is still some time for final evaluations before the Orlando Magic are officially on the clock.
There might be some time for final evaluations, but that time is rapidly running out. The 2022 NBA Draft is now just two weeks away, and teams are bringing in prospects for individual workouts to try to get their final looks at players before the big night.
We over here at No Ceilings have had quite a few late-night draft film viewing sessions of our own, and we are amped for another content-packed couple of weeks before the draft on June 23rd. After releasing V.7 of our BIG Board earlier this week, we had to come back for more, putting together a Mock Draft V.7 with 58 of our top-rated prospects.
While there will still be more news and adjustments over the next two weeks, a lot of the dust has already settled in terms of the 2022 NBA Draft. The anticipation will continue to build over the next 14 days, and it will be fascinating to see which directions these teams choose to go in and if some of their actions line up with the intuitions that we had in mind for those teams below.
Enjoy, No Ceilings family!
1. ORLANDO MAGIC - CHET HOLMGREN | GONZAGA | PF/C
Nathan: While all of the intel is pointing towards Jabari Smith being the top selection for Orlando, this is OUR mock draft! Therefore, as I am selecting for the Magic, I’m taking the highest-ranked player on my board. Holmgren checks a lot of boxes the current front office looks for in young talent—size, length, skill, and defensive activity, along with untapped offensive upside. The Magic need to take a swing on who has the highest upside, and for my money, that’s Holmgren.
2. OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER - JABARI SMITH JR. | AUBURN | F
Nathan: With Chet Holmgren off the board, the Thunder can pivot towards a player in Smith who isn’t a poor fit with any NBA team. Smith’s struggles come from his current inability to create off more than one or two dribbles. That’s not something he would have to worry about in OKC, however, with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Josh Giddey having the craft to get Smith the ball in his best spots. Every team can use a guy who can rise and fire over multiple defenders while also covering ground defensively.
3. HOUSTON ROCKETS - PAOLO BANCHERO | DUKE | F
Corey: Houston walks away with a heist at the #3 spot, nabbing Duke’s Paolo Banchero. The Rockets now pair their star guard with a potential star forward that could play in an NBA game yesterday and could give the Rockets the toughest one-two scoring punch in the league one day. The modern NBA is about size, skill, and versatility, and at 6’10” and 250 pounds, Banchero brings that holy trifecta in spades.
4. SACRAMENTO KINGS - JADEN IVEY | PURDUE | G
Metcalf: Ivey’s fit alongside De’Aaron Fox has been the biggest hold up for most people placing Ivey with the Kings, but the fit actually makes a lot of sense. Ivey isn’t this ball-dependent player many make him out to be. In fact, he’s a tremendous off-ball player who runs hard off screens, leaks out in transition, and found most of his shooting success off the catch. Ivey will still have the ability to develop his “PG” play as he can run the second unit, but he can also play alongside Fox at a high level while growing into his All-Star upside.
5. DETROIT PISTONS - KEEGAN MURRAY | IOWA | F
Nick: Keegan Murray would seriously bolster the frontcourt for the Detroit Pistons, and he would provide excellent spacing alongside Cade Cunningham. He will be able to score against mismatches created by Cunningham, along with contributing as a plus defender sooner rather than later. Murray might not be the flashiest player in the draft, but he would fill a ton of holes for this developing Pistons team.
6. INDIANA PACERS - JOHNNY DAVIS | WISCONSIN | G
Albert: Johnny Davis as a backcourt partner for Tyrese Haliburton is perfect. Davis’s two-way potential, relentless effort, shot-making ability, and star potential makes him an awesome partner for Haliburton’s versatile offensive game. The two guys can share the ball-handling/playmaking duties and create an incredible young foundation with Duarte and Isaiah Jackson as well. Davis may be the best guard in this class, and getting him at #6 could potentially be an incredible steal for the Pacers.
7. PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS - DYSON DANIELS | G-LEAGUE IGNITE | G
Alex: With the new dynamic scoring backcourt of Damian Lillard and Anfernee Simons, Portland is in need of some defensive versatility and playmaking. Dyson Daniels brings both of those and is big enough to play alongside the other two guards. This has become one of my favorite fits for Daniels as he can help sure up Portland’s perimeter defense while providing some upside beyond the Lillard years in Portland.
8. NEW ORLEANS PELICANS (via LAL) - A.J. GRIFFIN | DUKE | G/F
Evan: New Orleans could use some depth at the wing spot, and I think they’d be ecstatic to get Griffin with the eighth pick. He would provide the Pelicans with a versatile, interchangeable rotation of forwards alongside Herb Jones and Trey Murphy. Plus, I believe Griffin’s shot-making ability would free up some things for Brandon Ingram, CJ McCollum, and Zion Williamson offensively as well. Adding a dynamic two-way wing with Griffin’s star potential in the bottom half of the top ten should have Pelicans fans thrilled for next season.
9. SAN ANTONIO SPURS - JEREMY SOCHAN | BAYLOR | F
Maxwell: San Antonio has proven to be a strong developmental organization over the years, particularly with regard to shooting. Sochan can do everything else— he’s a marvelous passer for his size, a multi-position defender, and a physical wonder who has no problem around the basket. For a team that lacks frontcourt depth, he fits a positional need while simultaneously offering a world of upside. Think of him as a big man version of Dejounte Murray—a high-effort player with excellent physical tools who just needs some seasoning. He’ll bring future upside and lineup optionality with the ability to play on day one, thanks to his defense and competitiveness.
10. WASHINGTON WIZARDS - BENNEDICT MATHURIN | ARIZONA | G
Nathan: Seeing Mathurin fall this far would give the Wizards a great wing to slot in between Bradley Beal and Kristaps Porzingis. While the team has plenty of forwards who can slide across multiple positions, there aren’t any guards who are worth reaching for unless the team wants to take a swing on Shaedon Sharpe. And given Beal wants to remain in Washington and likely win sooner rather than later, Mathurin can come in and impact the game quicker on both ends of the floor while still possessing significant upside at a premium position in the league.
11. NEW YORK KNICKS - SHAEDON SHARPE | KENTUCKY | G
Nathan: The Sharpe fall (see what I did there?) ends with the Knicks at #11. At the end of the day, despite the unknowns, there’s too much upside tied to Sharpe to pass on him any further. And New York isn’t a city afraid of taking swings or betting on star potential. As a guard who is better suited off the ball at this point in his career, Sharpe could slot in between RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley when he’s ready and provide secondary or tertiary playmaking out of the PnR along with cutting, transition finishing, and spot-up shooting.
12. OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER - OUSMANE DIENG | NZ BREAKERS | W
Corey: The Thunder got their prize early with Smith and decide to swing for upside with their second lotto selection. Ousmane Dieng is what you might get if Paul George and Aleksej Pokusevski had a baby. The 6’10” French swing-wing is ways away from being a high-end NBA player, but his ability to shoot the rock and make plays out of the P&R is too enticing a combo for Sam Presti and his war chest to pass up here.
13. CHARLOTTE HORNETS - MALAKI BRANHAM | OHIO STATE | SG
Metcalf: Branham has a unique ability to play both on and off-ball. He was one of the most effective spot-up shooters in this class and will immediately provide LaMelo Ball with a reliable kick-out option. On top of that, Branham can help lessen the offensive load Ball carries as he is incredibly effective in the pick-and-roll. Branham’s calm demeanor is rare for a player his age. He is a high-level passer and versatile scorer. The defense needs work, but there aren’t many better options in terms of improving the versatility of their offense.
14. CLEVELAND CAVALIERS - OCHAI AGBAJI | KANSAS | W
Nick: The Cleveland Cavaliers nearly made the playoffs last season on the strengths of their talented young frontcourt and with Darius Garland leading the charge in the backcourt; however, this team could use more help on the wing. Enter Ochai Agbaji, fresh off a National Championship, to fill that gap. Agbaji is an exceptional defender both on and particularly off the ball, and he also has grown into an elite three-point shooter as well. He would shore up Cleveland’s wing rotation and help them compete for a playoff spot right away.
15. CHARLOTTE HORNETS - MARK WILLIAMS | DUKE | C
Albert: The Hornets need help on defense and adding a defensive anchor in Williams to go along with adding Branham at #13 is an incredible haul for that young and exciting Hornets squad. Williams will provide them with a ton of defensive stability and will be a great vertical threat for them on the offensive side as well. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Williams will probably be an upgrade over who they had playing center for them last season.
16. ATLANTA HAWKS - TARI EASON | LSU | F
Alex: The Atlanta Hawks need defensive versatility on the wing in the worst way. Tari Eason just might be the top prospect in this draft when it comes to defending multiple positions. He should be able to provide value on that end from day one while also adding speed and athleticism to the offensive end as well. Running in transition and playing off Trae Young should be fun to watch.
17. HOUSTON ROCKETS (via BRK) - DALEN TERRY | ARIZONA | G
Evan: With Houston getting a potential franchise-changing piece in Banchero at #3, adding a swiss army knife-type player like Terry is a smart move. He’d be an incredible secondary playmaker for a team who desperately needs one and upgrade Houston’s perimeter defense as well. I also think he’ll have no problem playing off either Jalen Green or Kevin Porter Jr. and, if anything, make life easier for Houston’s dynamic backcourt duo on both ends of the floor.
18. CHICAGO BULLS - JALEN DUREN | MEMPHIS | C
Maxwell: Seeing Jalen Duren on the board at this stage would be a jackpot scenario for the Chicago Bulls. His rim-running and rim protection skills should allow him to play immediately for a competitive team that struggled mightily to find a suitable backup big man for much of this past season. However, it’s his intriguing upside that makes this pick so much sweeter. Duren has flashed mid-range shooting ability, passing, and impressive ball-handling at times over the past few years. Getting a young center with these skills fits the timeline of the younger Bulls, such as Lonzo Ball, Pat Williams, and Ayo Dosunmu, and provides a ready-made replacement for Nikola Vucevic. For my money, Duren is the best center prospect in this draft, and he’s too good to pass up at #18.
19. MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES - E.J. LIDDELL | OHIO STATE | F
Nathan: Point guard could become an interesting position of need for the Timberwolves depending on what happens to D’Angelo Russell, but getting a combo forward who can reliably stretch the floor, provide help on the interior, and rebound the ball on both ends seems far too enticing to pass up given the team’s readiness to start competing in the playoffs. Liddell gives Minnesota a rotational asset in the short term while also providing long-term value as a starter down the line should the bulk of his scoring arsenal translate from the college level.
20. SAN ANTONIO SPURS (via TOR) - JALEN WILLIAMS | SANTA CLARA | W
Nathan: We are quite the fans of Williams at No Ceilings, and I’d suspect that San Antonio’s front office is as well. Williams brings not only some playmaking upside out of the PnR, but he’s also a legitimate catch-and-shoot threat in the halfcourt and gives the Spurs something they don’t currently have enough of on the wing. Defensively he’d fit right in with the versatility the roster currently possesses.
21. DENVER NUGGETS - PATRICK BALDWIN JR. | MILWAUKEE | F
Corey: The Nuggets front office has never been scared off from an underwhelming pre-NBA season, and so they continue to swing on pedigree with the selection of Patrick Baldwin Jr. Baldwin may not be the potential on-ball creator he was billed as coming into his freshman season, but he won’t have to be playing off of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray. Instead, Baldwin can focus on shooting wide the F open jumpers and using his plus passing feel to get the ball where it needs to go. We’ve already seen the organization develop a 6’10” wing shooter once; they’ll bet that they can do it again.
22. MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES (via UTA) - JADEN HARDY | G-LEAGUE IGNITE | SG
Metcalf: By trading up for Ziaire Williams last year, the Grizzlies showed that they are now in the business of taking home run swings after using the previous drafts and off seasons to add quality pieces around their superstar Ja Morant. At this point in the draft, Hardy is the biggest swing. Hardy’s immediate impact will come as an off-ball scorer. He has deep shooting range, runs well off screens, and scores in a variety of ways. Hardy also shows promise as a second-side creator who can run an effective pick-and-roll. If Hardy can show similar improvement in his first year as he did with the G-League Ignite, the Grizzlies could be adding another scoring dynamo to their backcourt.
23. PHILADELPHIA 76ERS - TYTY WASHINGTON | KENTUCKY | G
Nick: The Philadelphia 76ers traded for James Harden last season and got a breakout season from Tyrese Maxey, but they could still use some help in the backcourt–especially in terms of playmaking. TyTy Washington had an up-and-down season at Kentucky last year, but his passing in his best moments (see: his 17-assist game against Georgia) would make a huge difference for the Sixers, and his ability to score in the mid-range will allow him to take advantage when defenses leave him open.
24. MILWAUKEE BUCKS - GABRIELE PROCIDA | FORTITUDO | W
Albert: The Bucks could use some more athleticism and shooting from the wing positions. Adding a guy like Procida would be a great bet worth taking at this spot. Procida is an explosive athlete with a sweet jump shot. The Bucks could definitely use that. With Wes Matthews now entering his late 30’s and with what they’ve gotten out of Allen and Connaughton, adding Procida to the rotation as another option to support Middleton would be a good decision for them. Procida has some growing up to do on the defensive end, but I’m confident in his ability to grow on that end of the court, as most of his flaws can be cleaned up with coaching and him filling out his frame.
25. SAN ANTONIO SPURS (via BOS) - JAKE LARAVIA | WAKE FOREST | F
Alex: Jake LaRavia to the Spurs just seems like a match made in heaven. The do-it-all role player should fit seamlessly alongside any lineup San Antonio wants to throw out there. After drafting Jeremy Sochan and Jalen Williams, the Spurs walk away with a draft class of potential elite roleplayers to build around. They are still missing a true “star” in San Antonio, but maybe Dejounte Murray can take that next leap and become that guy.
26. DALLAS MAVERICKS - RYAN ROLLINS | TOLEDO | G
Evan: Getting Rollins at 26 could end up being the steal of the draft for Dallas. I feel this is a team that, coming off a surprise Western Conference Finals run, could add either a rim protector or shotmaker. I went with the latter when I saw the Toledo star fall down the board. He gives the Mavericks some Jalen Brunson insurance in case he departs in free agency this summer while additionally providing some much-needed shot creation and playmaking relief for Luka Doncic.
27. MIAMI HEAT - KENNEDY CHANDLER | TENNESSEE | G
Maxwell: Chandler was the top-ranked prospect left on my board here, but he also fits the Miami Heat culture like a glove. The small point guard is filled with competitive spirit and determination. He overcame hiccups in production to ultimately lead (and he was the leader) a Tennessee squad to a 2-seed in the NCAA tournament. He’ll take a bit of time to adjust to the additional size and athleticism of the NBA, just as he did in college, but he’s a savvy operator who I trust to figure it out. His defensive effort is off the charts, and his ability to hit threes from deep behind the NBA line is a crucial skill for a player his size. The Heat would be getting a viable long-term NBA player, which is great value for this part of the draft.
28. GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS - BLAKE WESLEY | NOTRE DAME | G
Nathan: Wesley has been an acquired taste for some at No Ceilings, but there’s little to no question in my mind that getting to take him this low in the first round is significant value in my book. A 6’5” combo guard developing on the offensive end, Wesley’s tenacity on the defensive side of the ball could help him earn minutes as early as his rookie season in Golden State. The Warriors need depth at the guard spot past Gary Payton II, and Wesley could learn a lot not just from him but also from one of the best to ever do it in Steph Curry.
29. MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES - PEYTON WATSON | UCLA | W
Nathan: Why not take an upside swing on a player who at one point was ranked in the Top 10 of boards before the college season started? Watson’s fall from grace was steep, but he still possesses one of the most intriguing packages of size, length, and versatility in this draft class. A wing who is getting better at handling the ball and hitting perimeter shots, he’s still a threat in transition and a threat to swat away shots on the defensive end. The Grizzlies have multiple first-round picks, and they will likely look at taking a shot on a player like Watson come draft night.
30. OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER (via PHX) - MAX CHRISTIE | MICHIGAN STATE | W
Corey: Presti continues to make value play selections in the first round by grabbing Michigan State’s Max Christie. The numbers may not have shown it as a freshman, but Max Christie is going to shoot the crap out of the ball at the next level. Christie is a guy who can score the rock without needing to have the ball in his hands, making him a seamless fit in the Thunder backcourt next to on-ball creators like SGA and Josh Giddey.