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2020 NBA Re-Draft

Anthony Edwards holds onto the top spot in the 2020 NBA Re-draft

Hindsight is always 20/20. It’s only natural for fans to look back on certain NBA draft classes and wonder what could have been. Now in their fourth season, the 2020 NBA draft class has more or less acclimated themselves to the league.

Having been thought of as a weaker class at the time, they’ve done a decent job proving that analysis wrong. There are a few franchise players and many serviceable role players that could be found inside the lottery.

Let’s take a look at what could have been!

2020 NBA Draft Redraft:

1) Minnesota Timberwolves: Anthony Edwards (Originally Picked 1st)

Original Pick: Anthony Edwards

Anthony Edwards is a bonafide superstar and franchise player for the Timberwolves. He’s averaging 26.2 points per game while shooting the ball 38.5 percent from deep. He’s also good for at least one sports center top 10 play nearly every week. This isn’t a hard sell to anyone as he’s the undisputed best in this draft class. Edwards is the easy choice at number one and the star of the 2020 NBA Draft.

2) Golden State Warriors: Tyrese Haliburton (Originally Picked 12th)

Original Pick: James Wiseman

Tyrese Haliburton got off to an unbelievable start to the season, leading the Pacers to the In-season tournament finals. Averaging 23.6 points and a league high 12.5 assists, Haliburton is an offensive masterpiece. He’s an elite playmaker who can exploit defenses via the pass, drive, pick-and-roll, or three point shot. Although the Warriors were understandably secure at the guard spots, it would have been a lot of fun to see Haliburton in that free-flowing offense.

He’s an All-NBA level talent, and he should continue on an upward trajectory. He is clearly the next choice in the 2020 NBA Draft class.

3) Charlotte Hornets: Lamelo Ball (Originally Picked 3rd)

Original Pick: Lamelo Ball

This draft class’ rookie of the year, Lamelo Ball proved a lot of doubters wrong the moment he stepped into the NBA. Ball actually has an eerily similar play style to Haliburton as a tall, lanky point guard that runs the show. Haliburton gets the slight edge as the only knock on Ball would be his absences due to injury. Only playing 36 games last season, Ball is currently sidelined for multiple weeks with an ankle injury.

When he’s on the floor though, he’s a franchise point guard who’s more than deserving of the number three spot.

4) Chicago Bulls: Tyrese Maxey (Originally Selected 21st)

Original Pick: Patrick Williams

In the absence of James Harden for the 76ers this season, Tyrese Maxey has elevated his game even higher. He’s averaging 26.2 points per game and 6.7 assists on the season. These are All-Star level numbers, and Maxey might be on the verge of becoming a franchise level guard.

Having drafted Coby White the year before, the Bulls weren’t keen on another guard, but Maxey clearly would have been worth the selection. He’s shown that he can be dynamic on both ends at either guard spot giving him the versatility to build around.

5) Cleveland Cavaliers: Desmond Bane (Originally Selected 30th)

Original Pick: Isaac Okoro

Desmond Bane was seen as a decent 3-and-D prospect coming out of TCU, but probably didn’t have a high upside. Over the past three seasons, Bane has easily disproved this analysis averaging 21.5 points per game. In the absence of Ja Morant, he’s shown that he can even lead an offense as the number one option.

The defensive projections have remained true as well. He’s a fierce competitor that uses his strength and agility to give guards plenty trouble on the ball. He would have made a great backcourt teammate with Darius Garland who was part of the Cavalier’s previous draft class.

6) Atlanta Hawks: Jaden McDaniels (Originally Selected 28th)

Original Pick: Onyeka Okongwu

Jaden McDaniels has become a vital piece to the Minnesota Timberwolves as seen by his recent $136 million contract extension. McDaniels wreaks havoc on the defensive end guarding the other team’s best guards or forwards every night. On offense he provides athleticism at the rim and is shooting a career 35.9 percent from three.

This impressive versatility makes McDaniels exactly what the Hawks have been looking for on the wing for multiple seasons now.

7) Detroit Pistons: Devin Vassell (Originally Selected 11th)

Original Pick: Killian Hayes

It’s impossible to know the future, but Devin Vassell could have been exactly what the doctor ordered for the Pistons. Their current roster construction severely lacks three point shooting and perimeter defense. Vassell is what is known as a ‘3-and-D plus’ player. Vassell is shooting 38.2 percent from deep while also averaging over a steal per game.

The ‘plus’ in his 3-and-D archetype comes from his major improvements in shot-creation since he was drafted. He’s scoring the ball at all three levels from a variety of platforms in isolation and the pick-and-roll.

8) New York Knicks: Immanuel Quickley (Originally Selected 25th)

Original Pick: Obi Toppin

You can’t fault the Knicks for not taking Immanuel Quickley here because they ended up stealing him at 25 anyways. Even still, Quickley has impressed the entire league with his energy and ability to get buckets in a hurry. Recently traded to the Raptors in a blockbuster deal, Quickley will attempt to build on his 16.5 points per game.

He’s certainly a top guard in this draft class and a proven commodity at either guard spot. He can provide any team with a spark and impactful scoring on offense.

9) Washington Wizards: Onyeka Okongwu (Originally Selected 6th)

Original Pick: Deni Avdija

The Wizards seem stuck in underachievement with no prospect on the board at this point likely changing that. With that in mind, they take what was, and still is considered a safe bet in Onyeka Okongwu. Okongwu’s numbers suffer from playing behind veteran center Clint Capela, but he’s been exactly what most thought he would be.

He’s a frontcourt anchor on defense and has excelled alongside Trae Young as a lob threat in the pick-and-roll. He’s also flashed intriguing perimeter defensive ability that can be similar to what Bam Adebayo does for the Heat.

10) Phoenix Suns: Cole Anthony (Originally Selected 15th)

Original Pick: Jalen Smith

The Suns would make it all the way to the NBA finals this year with the addition of Chris Paul. One of the main issues however during that run was their guard depth. This is where Cole Anthony has made a living in this draft class. Anthony is a microwave scoring guard that can heat up the pace to any game, especially off the bench. He plays with intensity and is enjoying a good season with the Magic, currently averaging near 14.0 points per game.

11)  San Antonio Spurs: Patrick Williams (Originally Selected 4th)

Original Pick: Devin Vassell

With Vassell already off the board in this redraft, the Spurs take his college teammate in Patrick Williams. Williams hasn’t quite lived up to the hype of his top five selection, but all the physical tools are present. Most hoped that Williams would develop his three point shot and become the versatile defensive combo-forward that’s often coveted. Surprisingly, he’s shooting a career 41 percent from three on almost three attempts per game. He’s also always been tasked guarding the other team’s best player and certainly could help any team’s defense.

The main issue is that he’s been stuck in mediocrity for four seasons, always averaging around the exact same numbers. It would have been interesting to see what Popovich and his amazing development staff could have done with Williams though. This is especially true since he has a similar game to former Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard, who wasn’t seen as a scorer coming out of college.

12) Sacramento Kings: Saddiq Bey (Originally Selected 19th)

Original Pick: Tyrese Haliburton

The Kings would like to keep their original pick here although they ended up trading the All-Star Haliburton anyways. With Haliburton off the board though, the Kings take Saddiq Bey to pair with De’Aaron Fox on the wing. Bey was seen to as a 3-and-D prospect in the 2020 draft class but wasn’t the most superb athlete. The perimeter shooting has lived up to expectations, but he isn’t as impactful on defense as many hoped.

He’s still a six-foot-eight wing who can provide advanced offense and is at least serviceable on the other end though. There’s usually always a rotation spot for players of that mold.

13) New Orleans Pelicans: Aaron Nesmith (Originally Selected 14th)

Original Pick: Kira Lewis Jr.

Coming off selecting Zion Williamson with first overall pick in 2019, the Pelicans take Aaron Nesmith with the 13th pick. It took Nesmith a few seasons to get going, but he’s found his rhythm with the Pacers. His three point percentages are finally beginning to match the elite shooting he displayed in college. He’s shooting a blistering 45.6 percent from three on 4.6 attempts per game. Nesmith has also drastically improved on the defensive end, using his six-foot-six physique to even garner a Giannis Antetokounmpo assignment.

This 3-and-D mold fits perfect with the Pelicans, as they eventually drafted Trey Murphy and Jordan Hawkins for this archetype.

14) Boston Celtics: Obi Toppin (Originally Selected 8th)

Original Pick: Aaron Nesmith

Indiana must be the place where everyone goes to find their rhythm. Just like Haliburton and Nesmith, Obi Toppin is enjoying a breakout season with the Pacers. Their fast paced, transition focused playstyle certainly compliments Toppin’s natural gifts. He’s a superb and fluid athlete at six-foot-nine who has started to show three point promise as well. He’s shooting a career high 40.8 percent from three this season and averaging 11.6 points per game.

If Toppin continues this pace, he will be a valuable athletic forward for a long time to come. He would end the lottery in the 2020 NBA Draft re-draft.

 

(Other Notable Players: Deni Avdija, Isaiah Stewart, Isaiah Joe, Isaac Okoro, Josh Green, Payton Pritchard, Precious Achiuwa)

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