Warriors 2020 Draft Pick Tournament: The Top 16 Prospects Plus 4
Let's learn about the leading contenders for the Warriors Top 5 draft pick
The Warriors will have a Top 5 draft pick, so it’s time to start learning about the leading candidates for the pick. So we’re going to have a tournament that you vote on, with prospect scouting reports and video highlights.
The 2020 Draft
Warriors fans will be heavily invested in the NBA Draft for the first time since the 2012 NBA Draft which netted Harrison Barnes, Festus Ezeli and Draymond Green. That draft had all sorts of hijinks including:
questionable will to win down the stretch
a thrilling lose-by-goaltending game, which put GSW in a tie with Toronto for the 7th spot
which was important because GSW had stupidly traded a Top 7 protected pick in a dreadful trade
so a coin flip would decide if the Warriors would keep their pick
which the Warriors won (in what passed for thrills in those days along with updates on Steph Curry’s ankle)
culminating in the drafts of Harrison Barnes, Festus Ezeli and Draymond Green
Now the Warriors are back in the lottery! And the lottery has been scheduled!
The weird thing is that the lottery order doesn’t matter as much as you’d think. No one loves any particular prospect, so having a #5 pick might be as good as getting #1. Maybe better, because you don’t have to pay the rookie as much.
It’s still early times, but in many ways that also doesn’t matter because we’re not going to have any more basketball to judge the draftees. Which means, let’s vote on who we want GSW to select with their draft pick.
Selecting Sixteen Possible Draft Picks
I’ve created a list of 16 potential targets in the following way. First, I compiled a number of expert Draft Rankings.
Then I did some complicated analysis looking at average and variance of rankings, which I ultimately decided to replace with something simpler.
Here are all the players who were rated in the Top 10 by every analyst.
Then, I also threw in every player who was rated in the Top 10 by somebody.
Kira Lewis Jr.
That gives us 15 players. I then checked out the great GSW Reddit list of GSW media reports, and here are other players that GSW reportedly has draft interest in.
Vernon Carey Jr.
McDaniels has had maturity issues and sounds like the kind of prospect the Warriors avoid. Carey was listed on only 4 of the 7 mock drafts we looked at, so he’s unlikely to jump into the Top 5.
Bey has the highest composite ranking on my combined list of Draft Ratings, so I am putting him in the tournament.
The Tournament and Bracket Seedings
I am going to set them up against each other in a single-elimination tournament, seeded by average ranking. I will give scouting reports and allow you to vote on who advances.
Kira Lewis Jr.
Okay, Round 1 matchups will be coming out in the next couple of days. See you soon!
First Round Results
I listed the final weighted vote percentages (LGW comment votes = 10 Twitter votes), but also put a * next to the winner of the LGW comment vote
1. Anthony Edwards* vs 16. Tyrell Terry (85.6% - 14.4%)
2. LaMelo Ball* vs 15. R.J. Hampton (72.2% - 27.8%)
3. Killian Hayes* vs 14. Kira Lewis Jr. (79.6% - 20.4%)
4. Obi Toppin vs 13. Saddiq Bey* (56.9% - 43.1%). Twitter for Obi, but massive support for Bey at LGW made this a close one.
5. James Wiseman vs 12. Aaron Nesmith*. (67.2% - 32.8%) Massive LGW support for Nesmith cannot overcome Twitter support for Wiseman.
6. Onyeka Okongwu* vs 11. Cole Anthony. (81.8% - 18.2%).
7. Isaac Okoro vs 10. Devin Vassell*. (39.2% - 60.8%). Our first upset!!
Second Round Matchups
1. Anthony Edwards vs 8. Tyrese Haliburton
2. LaMelo Ball vs 10. Devin Vassell
3. Killian Hayes vs 6. Onyeka Okongwu
4. Obi Toppin vs 5. James Wiseman
The Dark Horse Bonus Round
As more draft analysis and reporting gets updated, a few other candidates have come up that didn’t make the Top 16, so after the Tournament is done, we are going to have a Bonus Round, a kind of NIT for four long-shot candidates for the Top 5 that didn’t make it into the Tournament, but who are getting enough buzz that we should also scout them.