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What Should the Wizards Do With the No. 2 Overall Pick?

The Washington Wizards have an interesting decision to make with the No.2 overall pick.

Four teams may be left battling for the Larry O’Brien trophy, but every other team’s eyes are set on June 26th, the first day of the NBA Draft. The Wizards are one of those teams, having finished with a 15-67 record. The No. 2 overall pick is a great spot to be in…but what should the Wizards do with the No. 2 overall pick?

What Should the Wizards Do With the #2 Overall Pick?

Keep the Pick, or Trade It?

Without a doubt, the Wizards should keep their pick. There’s no trade a team throws their way that makes it worthwhile to dump this pick. The Wizards aren’t contenders, and likely won’t be close to the play-in for another year or two. They need to draft a young star, someone that they can rebuild around. Plus, there’s no clear consensus No. 1 pick, so while the idea of trading up has been floated, I don’t think there’s much merit to it.

As I stated above, there is no clear consensus top pick in the 2024 NBA Draft. According to the following Mock Drafts:

Bleacher Report has the Wizards taking Alex Sarr with the No. 2 pick has the Wizards most frequently taking Zaccharie Risacher with the No. 2 pick

CBS Sports’ various mock drafts had the Wizards taking Sarr, Risacher, Stephon Castle, or Reed Sheppard with the No. 2 pick

We don’t know whether the Wizards office will draft by talent (best available) or position-based need, although current trends in the NBA point to drafting by talent. If they were to go by need, however, the Wizards could definitely use a center or small forward. The Wizards’ current starting center is Marvin Bagley III, and their backup is Tristan Vukcevic. After trading Daniel Gafford to the Dallas Mavericks at the trade deadline, the Wizards are lacking in big men. At forward, the team has Deni Avdija, Kyle Kuzma, and Corey Kispert that’s about it. A small forward or power forward would be beneficial too.

Many of the projected top picks in this draft are forwards and big men, which is good for the Wizards. Even though some are calling this a weak draft class, General Manager Will Dawkins likes what he sees.

“There’s good players in every draft, {and} there’s going to be All-Stars in every draft,” he said in an interview. “We have to do our best. There’s not a clear 1-2-3 which actually gives us more opportunity to see more people, and have more players come through DC for visits, so for us it’s an advantage.”

So, what should the Wizards do with the No.2 overall pick? Fortunately, both position-based needs and the best talent available fall at the top of the draft for the franchise.

Big Men

Sarr would definitely be a good pickup for the Wizards. At 7’1″, the 18-year-old is an intimidating rim presence. Originally from France, Sarr spent time playing in Overtime Elite in Atlanta, then went to the NBL in Australia (the same league LaMelo Ball played in) to play professionally for a year. He’s a great shot blocker on the defensive end and has shown flashes on offense, stretching the floor and knocking down three-point shots. That shot-blocking ability should really appeal to the Wizards, who finished 28th in defensive rating this season. Sarr is mobile and athletic, but his weight of 216 pounds is cause for some concern when matched against NBA bigs in the paint. Still, he would be a great addition to the Wizards if available.

Riscacher, another Frenchman, stands 6’8″ and 204 pounds. He’s a spot-up shooter who moves well off the ball, and spends most of his time on the wing, similar to Kispert. However, his size gives him an advantage against smaller small forwards, and his speed and quickness give him an advantage against larger power forwards. Riscacher is athletic, releases the ball quickly while shooting, and shot over 40% from three playing in France. Additionally, he’s great at slashing to the rim, which you can see here.

Potential Other Picks:

While one of those two is the most likely to be picked by the Wizards, there are a few other players who the Wizards might be considering with the No. 2 pick.

One of those shouldn’t be Stephon Castle, as he’s a 6’6″ shooting guard. The Wizards don’t have a need for another guard currently with Tyus Jones and Jordan Poole. People may make jokes about Poole and his lowlights, but he’s still a productive guard off the bench. The Wizards are in this for the long haul, and they aren’t giving up on Poole.

Reed Sheppard from Kentucky is a 6’3″ guard, but he might be a slightly better fit. He could complement Poole well if Jones leaves in free agency, as a facilitator, three-point shooter, and solid defender. He’s a good height for an NBA point guard, and could fit well with the Wizards; however, I just don’t see them picking Sheppard over Sarr or Riscacher.

Nikola Topic is an intriguing guard as well next to Poole. Standing at 6’6″, Topic is the best fit in the draft next to Poole. While ball-dominant, Topic is known for getting to the paint, his change of speed, finishing at awkward angles, and being an amazing facilitator. His shooting is suspect at best and faulty at worst (24% from three last season), which works perfectly with Poole. Topic can facilitate (keeping the ball out of Poole’s hands so that he avoids Shaqtin’ A Fool moments), making sure Poole gets as many open looks as possible. The only thing to keep in mind with Topic is that he recently sprained his knee in the Adriatic League Finals. Making sure he gets healthy and back to his old form is a priority for any team considering drafting him.

Final Consensus/Takeaways

Riscacher and Sarr are the best fits for this current Wizards roster. Sarr fits the absolute best, but if Atlanta drafts him first, Riscacher works well too. If the Wizards are going to select a guard with the No. 2 pick, it should be Topic. Whoever they pick, 2024 is bound to be an exciting draft for the Wizards and every other team drafting! Make sure to stay tuned!


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