LaMelo Ball Favored To BE No. 3 Pick 2020 NBA Draft

The NBA Draft could be held in late June if the NBA season is canceled due to the coronavirus. It could be pushed back a few months if the NBA waits to fit in the remainder of the season and tries to play the playoffs in adjusted circumstances. Regardless of when the draft actually happens, it also has to be said that the decision to cancel the season would establish a probable draft order:

The Golden State Warriors would likely have the No. 1 pick if the season was canceled; this is based on the fact that they have the NBA’s worst record. The Cleveland Cavaliers have the second-worst record. The Minnesota Timberwolves are third, and the Atlanta Hawks are fourth. Let’s assume for the sake of clarity that these four teams would start the draft in that order. Who would be the third pick?

LAMELO BALL

ODDS: +250

If we are trying to figure out the third pick in the draft, and if we are assuming that the Minnesota Timberwolves are the likely team picking in this spot, LaMelo ball makes no sense. Why? The Timberwolves just acquired D’Angelo Russell, a point guard. Why would they need LaMelo Ball? There is simply no need for redundancy at a position. The Timberwolves aren’t going to use a No. 3 draft pick on a backup point guard; no NBA team would do so. If LaMelo Ball is viewed as a good choice for a No. 3 pick in the next NBA Draft, that would obviously mean someone thinks the Timberwolves are going to trade down with another team which has a clear need for a point guard. Which team will that be? It’s hard to say, since plenty of teams could use a point guard.


JAMES WISEMAN

ODDS: +300

The Timberwolves certainly do not need a center, which is what Wiseman is. They have Karl-Anthony Towns in the paint, so it is hard to see why Wiseman is second on the odds list. Maybe it is felt that the season will resume and change the draft order, or that the Timberwolves somehow will fall to No. 4, with the Atlanta Hawks moving to No. 3 and taking Wiseman, which would make a lot more sense for them. The other limitation regarding Wiseman is that he might be taken in the top two, which would take him off the board for No. 3. Golden State at No. 1 and Cleveland at No. 2 could use Wiseman.


OBI TOPPIN

ODDS: +300

Toppin, at 6-feet-9, is a natural fit at power forward, which the Timberwolves could use to plug in next to Karl-Anthony Towns, who plays the center position. This is a compatible move and a position the Timberwolves need to address. Far more than LaMelo Ball or James Wiseman, this makes sense as a pick if Minnesota is going at No. 3 in the draft. This is the best bet on the board if the Timberwolves are picking. It would also make sense for Atlanta at No. 4.

ANTHONY EDWARDS
ODDS: +500

The Timberwolves parted with Andrew Wiggins, who never did give them what they were looking for on the wing. If Edwards, a shooting guard, is available at No. 3, the Timberwolves would have ample reason to take him. Edwards going at No. 3 makes sense because Golden State does not need him at No. 1. Cleveland might pick him at No. 2 – the Cavs do need a shooting guard – but if the Cavaliers pass, the Timberwolves can certainly use a fill-it-up scorer-shooter on the perimeter. 

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