With two days to go until the NBA Draft, consensus is starting to form on where Kentucky’s prospects will go. Kevin Knox and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander continue to trend as lottery — and potentially top ten — picks and Hamidou Diallo and Jarred Vanderbilt as second round picks, while Wenyen Gabriel has garnered some buzz as a possible late second round pick, making his first appearance in a major mock draft last week.
Here’s some of the latest intel from ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, who just updated his mock a few minutes ago.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: 8. Cleveland Cavaliers
“One of the draft’s most interesting storylines will be seeing when the first point guard comes off the board. Gilgeous-Alexander is quietly picking up steam as potentially being that guy, which is somewhat unexpected after being projected behind Trae Young and Collin Sexton for most of the year.
He hasn’t worked out for the Cavs — we’re hearing he’s angling to be picked by the Hornets or the Clippers — but that might not matter much, as Cleveland’s front office appears to be enamored with him. The Cavs are in dire need of a young ball handler, whether LeBron James returns or not. Although not a big-time scorer, Gilgeous-Alexander is talented enough to take the keys as the PG of the future if LeBron bolts, yet versatile enough to coexist with James and add value with his length, feel, skill and instincts if he stays.”
Kevin Knox: 9. New York Knicks
“While we’ve had Knox sliding to the Nos. 12-15 range the past few months after an up-and-down freshman season, NBA teams drafting in that range say they don’t anticipate him being there, as there seems to be a significant market for his services in the Nos. 7-11 range.
Knox had an underwhelming showing at his pro day in Miami, according to multiple scouts in attendance, but he has been very good otherwise in workouts. There’s a significant market in the NBA for combo forwards in his mold who can make an open shot, defend multiple positions and offer some offensive versatility. He’s one of the youngest players in this draft, so he still has plenty of room to continue to grow.”
Here’s where all the Cats stand in the latest mock drafts:
|Kevin Knox||Shai Alexander||Hamidou Diallo||Jarred Vanderbilt||Wenyen Gabriel|
|ESPN Top 100 (Updated 6/8)||9||10||37||56||78|
|ESPN (Updated 6/19)||9. NY Knicks||8. Cleveland||40. Brooklyn||46. Houston||—|
|The Athletic (Updated 6/14)||9. NY Knicks||12. LA Clippers||35. Orlando||29. Brooklyn||58. Denver|
|Sports Illustrated (Updated 6/19)||14. Denver||11. Charlotte||35. Orlando||47. LA Lakers||—|
|Sporting News* (Updated 6/18)||12. LA Clippers||15. Washington||29. Brooklyn||—||—|
|Gary Parrish* (Updated 6/19)||11. Charlotte||13. LA Clippers||—||—||—|
|NBADraft.net (Updated 6/18)||10. Philadelphia||12. LA Clippers||57. Ok. City||46. Houston||—|
*First Round Only