Hilltop students offer analysis and preview of this year’s NBA Draft

It is almost that time of the year for NBA fans around the world, as the 2020 NBA Draft is set to commence on Wednesday, November 18. With the top five picks in the draft belonging to the Timberwolves, Warriors, Hornets, Bulls, and the Cavaliers, there is much intrigue and speculation regarding the draft as a whole. Two current juniors, Joshua Spratt and Michael Plesa, were asked to share their opinions on the upcoming draft.

When asked about which team had the most to prove with this upcoming draft, Spratt said, “I think out of anybody, the Charlotte Hornets have the most to prove. They have lacked a star player ever since Kemba Walker left for Boston, and have floundered for the better part of the last 20 years.” Spratt continued, stating for the Hornets, “this is a big draft for them, as this could be an opportunity for the team to not only get the star they lack, but also add some solid role players to compliment him.”

Plesa then shared his thoughts, stating, “the team I think has the most to prove in the draft is the Phoenix Suns. Phoenix was not expected to do much of anything when they got invited to the NBA bubble a few months back, but to everyone’s surprise, they finished 8-0 within the bubble! If Phoenix can find a solid power forward in the draft to complement their star players, we might see the Suns as a playoff team next season, even in a stacked Western Conference.”

Draft night surprises are a cause for excitement every year. When asked to discuss draft night surprises, Spratt said, “over the past year it’s been pretty popular to have LaMelo Ball as one of, if not the top pick. However, Ball reportedly has not done himself any favors in pre-draft interviews, and I think it’s quite possible he falls down the board.” Plesa added, “there could be a couple big draft surprises this year, but not necessarily with the picks themselves. I think someone like Victor Oladipo could be someone to keep an eye on in a trade with the Raptors.” Plesa continued, “another surprise I think could shake the NBA is a possible Rudy Gobert trade to the Boston Celtics. Boston got eliminated last postseason mainly because they lacked a true rim protector, so this addition for the team would be massive.”

When asked what team could come away with the best draft, Spratt said, “the Timberwolves are an easy pick, so I’ll choose them, as they currently hold the 1st and 17th picks in the first round.” Plesa, who is an avid Minnesoda fan himself, was delighted to discuss the potential direction of the Timberwolves. “There are a ton of different options Minnesota has on the table with the 1st pick. There have been some trade rumors surrounding guys like Ben Simmons and Devin Booker possibly being traded there, which would be very exciting to see as a Timberwolves fan.”

It will be exciting to see what plays out during draft night for these NBA teams, and it is safe to say West Liberty students are eager to watch the events unfold.