Jazz looking at a variety of scenarios with the No. 5 pick in the NBA draft
With Embiid, Parker, Wiggins and Exum gone, the Jazz opt to go for the youngest player in the draft, Arizona’s Gordon, because he is touted as the best defensive player among Vonleh, Randle and himself. The Jazz keep talking about strengthening their defense and Gordon could fill the bill. As for his abysmal 42 percent free-throw shooting, Perrin points out that Karl Malone went from 48 percent as a rookie to a solid 75 percent career free-throw shooter.
Embiid, Parker, Wiggins and Exum are gone and the Jazz select Oklahoma State point guard Marcus Smart. The Jazz haven’t seemed too keen on Smart and he wasn’t one of the 90 players they brought in over the past two months. Perrin acted frustrated last week in saying he talked to Smart’s agent “three or four times” about bringing Smart in without any luck. But he also said they’ve seen plenty of tape on Smart and talked to him and saw him at the combine and aren’t afraid to take him.
Lindsey somehow swings a deal with Cleveland to get the No. 1 pick by giving up Derrick Favors or Gordon Hayward along with the No. 5 pick. Then the question is, who will the Jazz select, Parker or Wiggins?
While it may be tough to move into the top three, the Jazz swing a deal to move up to Orlando’s No. 4 spot. They would probably have to give up a young prospect like Alec Burks or Enes Kanter or a future draft pick. The Jazz would certainly do this to get Parker if he were available, but may not just to get Exum. Why would the Magic do this? They are rumored to like Smart, so if they can get him at No. 5 and also pick up a good player it would make sense for them.
With three power forwards as their most likely choices, the Jazz decide they’re happy with Favors, Kanter and Rudy Gobert, and trade down to get a shooter such as Creighton’s Doug McDermott or Michigan’s Nik Stauskas, who are expected to be available in the 9-12 range. By doing so, the Jazz would expect to get a solid veteran or a future first-rounder as part of such a trade.
Wiggins, Parker, Embiid and Exum are taken in the top four in some particular order, leaving the Jazz to choose between Vonleh, Gordon and Randle. The Jazz select Vonleh, based on a better potential upside and his superior outside shooting.
Besides the No. 5 pick, the Jazz have the No. 23 pick they acquired from Golden State as well as the No. 35 pick in the second round.
Perrin said while the Jazz will take the best player with their second draft pick of the first round, he also said they are unlikely to take a player at the same position as their first pick. So if the Jazz end up taking a big forward, they won’t take another big forward with this pick.
There is no consensus as to who the Jazz will take at No. 23. Among the players listed in the various mock drafts for the Jazz are UCLA guard Jordan Adams, Missouri guard Jordan Clarkson, North Carolina forward P.J. Hairston, Syracuse forward Jeremi Grant and Clint Capela, a 6-11 forward from Switzerland.
Others who could be available at No. 23 include Final Four MVP Shabazz Napier of Connecticut, UCLA swingman Kyle Anderson, Washington guard C.J. Wilcox, Wichita State forward Cleanthony Early.
The Jazz could also trade this pick because they might not want to be burdened with another guaranteed rookie contract after getting two first-rounders last year in Trey Burke and Gobert.
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