The 2020 NBA Draft is set for Thursday, June 25, and despite the coronavirus pandemic, we need to start looking at prospects and where they might land. After the NBA Draft Lottery takes place, teams will know where they’re selecting in the first round. Even though we don’t know where each team will pick, there’s no reason we can’t start speculating where prospects will end up on draft night. In this segment, we’ll be looking at each top prospect and breaking down their best and worst possible destination in the 2020 NBA Draft.
LaMelo Ball, G, Australia’s NBL
Best possible destination: Detroit Pistons
This would be a bit of an upset depending on how the lottery goes, but I don’t think there’s a team more desperate for talent than the Pistons. Until the emergence of Christian Wood late this season, the Pistons were pretty much barren in the prospect pool. Andre Drummond is gone, Reggie Jackson is gone, Blake Griffin and Derrick Rose were injured before the break. If you look at the Pistons’ depth chart, there’s a glaring need a guard and for a playmaker like Ball.
So this isn’t necessarily saying the Pistons are the best fit for Ball’s skillset. It’s not saying Ball fits Dwane Casey’s system to a tee. It’s saying that Detroit doesn’t have an electric, play-making stud like Ball. If you look at some of the other lottery teams, all of them have ball-dominant guards.
I think if Ball landed in Detroit, he could immediately make an impact, similar to what we saw with Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks the past two seasons. Ball would have a few solid players surrounding him in Wood and Griffin (if he can stay healthy).
Worst possible destination: Golden State Warriors
I wouldn’t say there’s a “worst” destination for Ball, really. Wherever he’ll go he should be able to fit into the team given his somewhat positionless identification. Ball is 6’7” and can run the point, but is built more like a traditional two-guard or swingman. The Dubs don’t make much sense given they have Steph, Klay and Andrew Wiggins on the roster. There’s really no place for Ball to slide in and he’d likely be selected by the Warriors as trade bait for a big or additional piece. Ball is best suited in the NBA on a team that is rebuilding and in need of a stud guard, not a team that is looking to reload for another run of titles during a dynasty.