After the NBA Draft lottery on Tuesday night, we now know which team is tied to which pick in the upcoming draft. Obviously, trades can still change up the order, but the picture is much clearer now.
Several Tar Heels are in contention to be drafted, but the draft lottery seemingly will only affect one—maybe two—if some team falls in love with Tony Bradley. With there now being some sort of final draft order, let’s see where the UNC contingent could go.
After a season that saw him win ACC Player of the Year, Jackson’s stock rose quite a bit. Most updated mock drafts see him going in the 12-16 range, with some chance he slips to later in the first round.
The Pistons were not that far away from the playoffs this season, finishing four games back. They’re a team that needs shooting, and as a three-year college player, Jackson could contribute right away. He probably wouldn’t be a piece that could take them into title contention immediately, but he could end up helping them get back to the playoffs. A place that needs a good shooting wing seems like a good landing spot for Jackson.
The Nuggets are a similar story to the Pistons. They narrowly missed the playoffs and could use some shooting. They have a decent young core of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray. Jackson could end up in worse places than helping space the floor for those two in Denver.
Some other possible destinations include the Miami Heat, Portland Trail Blazers, and Sacramento Kings. If for some reason Jackson does slip out of the top 20, you would think he would be a nice option for a playoff team. It’s not like Jackson would start for any team in that range, but there’s no reason he couldn’t be a nice bench option who could probably play immediately.
As they do for most borderline first round picks, the draft lottery has done little to change Bradley’s position in mock drafts.
You can still find some that list him as a first round pick, but at this point most mock drafts have him going in the first half of the second round. Most North Carolina fans will hope that means he’ll eventually find his way back to Chapel Hill. If he doesn’t though, there’s no reason a team won’t see him as a nice potential developmental pick in the second round.
As expected, the likes of Kennedy Meeks and Isaiah Hicks aren’t really factoring into mock drafts. They could always go in the second round, though.
With still more than a month to go until the draft, a lot can change. Plus, mock drafts are also still just mock drafts. However, the picture on Tar Heels’ potential future homes is a little more clear.