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We’re only days away from the 2022 NBA draft, which means teams are talking, rumors are spreading and information is being traded.
There is still a lot of discussion about who the Orlando Magic will take with the No. 1 overall pick. New questions about Chet Holmgren have also come up.
Trades are being discussed as well, starting with the Sacramento Kings at No. 4.
It’s not typical to hear anything concrete before draft week, so the next few days should include plenty more gossip.
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Since lottery night, rival teams have largely predicted that the Orlando Magic will favor Jabari Smith at No. 1. However, over the past week, we’ve heard the Magic are doing their homework on Chet Holmgren. The idea that Orlando is considering him has gained steam.
Smith also worked out for the Oklahoma City Thunder and spent multiple days with them. That suggests the Magic haven’t given him any assurance about drafting him first.
Smith did work out in Orlando as well.
There have also been questions about Holmgren’s willingness to take a physical and the NBA’s heart test. It’s unclear whether he plans to or only has for specific teams, but the idea that he’s trying to steer his way toward (or away) from certain teams is out there.
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Teams aren’t expecting Bennedict Mathurin to get past the New Orleans Pelicans at No. 8. Most people around the league believe he’ll be off the board by then at the latest.
Strong and explosive with 6’6″ size (in shoes) and a sweet shooting stroke, Mathurin presumably looks great in a workout setting. He’s more proven then Shaedon Sharpe, far more athletic than AJ Griffin and the more dangerous scorer/shooter compared to Dyson Daniels.
The Sacramento Kings, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers and Portland Trail Blazers could all view Mathurin as a fit at the 2/3 positions. His range is looking like Nos. 4-7.
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With Keegan Murray, Dyson Daniels and Bennedict Mathurin seemingly locked into the top eight, AJ Griffin is believed to be vulnerable to sliding.
Even though Shaedon Sharpe never played a minute at Kentucky, most assume he offers too much upside for teams to pass on in the Nos. 6-10 range.
Meanwhile, not everyone has bought into Griffin offering more than shooting. In 39 games at Duke, he totaled 38 assists, 20 steals and 53 free-throw attempts. That has raised questions about his lack of burst and heavier feet for creating, blowing by or defending.
While we haven’t received any word about Griffin’s medicals raising red flags, his injury history in high school is widely known. Griffin being on the board when the New York Knicks pick at No. 11 is sounding possible.
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Some believe Ousmane Dieng is getting consideration from lottery teams, and even a few drafting in the top 10.
He’s being viewed as a high-risk, high-reward pick, so believers may see enticing upside in a range where most prospects project as role players.
The idea of Dieng, a 6’9″ wing with guard skills, was always more compelling than his production. But over the second half of his season in the NBL, he strung together an…