Welcome to Pounding the Rock’s countdown to the NBA Draft Lottery, which is just 4 days away! Each day, we will be running a Mock Draft in Tankathon‘s draft simulator and exploring what the Spurs could do in each of their possible landing spots. Yesterday San Antonio selected Amen Thompson at 5th. Today we are looking at what the Spurs can do with the 4th overall pick. Here are the lottery results:
Two major jumpers make the top three in this mock draft. Orlando’s string of lottery luck continues, as they get two franchise altering players in back-to-back drafts. Washington getting into the top three here is great, especially since the Pistons are drafting second, and may pass on Scoot Henderson. Here are how the picks could play out if the Spurs stay in the top 4.
- Orlando Magic, Victor Wembanyama – Paolo Banchero and Victor Wembanyama. Talk about a dynamite future for the franchise. Unclear how the two ball dominant players would fit on offense, but defensively, Wemby makes this team scary.
- Detroit Pistons, Brandon Miller – Detroit gets Miller in back-to-back mock drafts. I think adding a high level three-point shooting wing next to Cade Cunningham and Jaden Ivey makes a lot of sense.
- Washington Wizards, Scoot Henderson – The Wizards need a slam dunk prospect, and Scoot is exactly that. He would step in from day one as the starting point guard on the roster and would be a nice bridge from the Bradley Beal era to the next generation of hoops in the nation’s capital.
Looks like the Spurs have yet another chance to grab one of the players with the highest upside in the draft.
My pick: Amen Thompson, G/F, Overtime Elite
Number three on my draft board, the Spurs feel good about Thompson falling to them at four. San Antonio’s past single digit picks have been quite good, and I think they get another franchise cornerstone.
A look back at Spurs single-digit draft picks pic.twitter.com/7NBC17hmct— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) May 11, 2023
With Thompson, the Spurs get even more long and athletic. Adding him to Jeremy Sochan, Devin Vassell and Keldon Johnson gives you a lot of versatility, and guys who can make plays off of the bounce. If the Spurs can nab a rim protecting big man in the second round, like James Nnaji, they may be in some real business after the 2023 draft.
Ausar Thompson: G/F, Overtime Elite
What about Amen’s twin? He projects as more of a high level role player than a superstar like his brother. However, he’s shown the ability to perform when it matters the most with the Overtime Elite, and projects to be a defensive beast who can be a connecting piece on a good team. Some scouts have compared him to Andre Iguodala, which feels like a good comparison.
Jarace Walker: Forward, Houston
I’m not sure considering either Ausar or Jarace over Amen makes a lot of sense, but the Spurs may feel differently. Walker is a high level defender, and would compliment Sochan well on that end, as a switchable wing. I think Walker has a bit more upside than some have given him credit for, with really strong feel for the game and some glimpses of shotmaking ability from the mid-range. If his three point shot becomes more consistent, he could be an all-star.
Notable 4th overall picks: Keegan Murray, Scottie Barnes, Jaren Jackson Jr., Kristaps Porzingis, Chris Paul
What do you think, Pounders? If the Spurs happen to fall to 4th in the draft, who would you like to see them pick?
Remember you can watch the Lottery on Tuesday, May 16 at 7:00 PM CT on ESPN.