2021 NBA Mock Draft: Way-Too-Soon 1st-Round Predictions

2021 NBA Mock Draft: Way-Too-Soon 1st-Round Predictions 1

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21. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (Villanova, PF, Sophomore)

Robinson-Earl would likely have generated some interest for this upcoming draft, but he’ll have the chance to maximize his stock during a second season at Villanova. Despite lacking athletic ability, he’s skilled around the basket with developing outside touch and IQ that pops at both ends of the floor.

22. Terrence Shannon Jr. (Texas Tech, SG, Sophomore)

With scouts tuned in for Jahmi’us Ramsey, some came away talking about Shannon’s athleticism and flashes of one-on-one scoring. As a top option in 2020-21, he’ll look to make a jump with his creation for playmaking and three-point shooting.

23. Romeo Weems (DePaul, SF, Sophomore)

Weems wasn’t consistent enough as a freshman to be taken seriously as a 2020 prospect. However, he’s on the radar with standout physical tools (6’7″, 210 lbs), athleticism, defensive potential and a capable jumper. A more polished offensive player, both as a creator and shot-maker, should generate 2021 first-round interest.

24. Franz Wagner (Michigan, SF, Sophomore)

More shooting consistency should help Wagner draw NBA looks in 2021. The eye test, his previous numbers in Germany and last year’s 83.3 free-throw percentage suggest his three-ball should make a jump from 31.1 percent. Otherwise, Wagner, a 6’8″ wing who’s still 18, has shown he can score in different ways with transition, pick-and-roll ball-handling and cutting skill. 

25. David Johnson (Louisville, PG, Sophomore)

Johnson’s 19-point, seven-assist game against Duke brought more attention to his positional tools and athleticism. He’s a playmaker, but meeting breakout expectations will mean making a big jump as a shooter after he hit just 21.7 percent of his threes and 60.0 percent of his free throws.

26. Josh Christopher (Arizona State, SG, Freshman)

Christopher plays an exciting style of offense given his explosiveness and difficult shot-making skills. Likely questions about his shot selection and efficiency suggest it’s more reasonable to project a mid-to-late first-rounder rather than a lottery pick.

27. Scottie Lewis (Florida, SG/SF, Sophomore)

Lewis’ offense looked too far behind to generate first-round interest in 2020. His elite quickness and athleticism still translated to defensive pressure and slashes. Enough improvement to his jumper could revitalize his stock, but he won’t have much margin for error, assuming he can only add so much as a creator (23 assists, 30 games).

28. Trayce Jackson-Davis (Indiana, C, Sophomore)

Jackson-Davis played bigger than 6’9″ in terms of finishing, rebounding and shot-blocking around the basket. Flashes of slick post moves, dunks off rolls and quick reactions in rim protection opened eyes during his freshman year. He’ll need to show more one-on-one polish and shooting touch as a sophomore to move onto 2021 first-round boards.

29. Wendell Moore Jr. (Duke, SF, Sophomore)

It’s too early to quit on Moore, who won’t turn 19 until September. At 6’6″, 213 pounds, he still offers plenty to like about his attacking and defensive potential. But he’ll have to make significant improvement as a finisher and shooter to resurface as a first-round prospect.

30. Will Richardson (Oregon, PG/SG, Junior)

Richardson has overcome strength and athletic limitations with skill and IQ to shoot 47.9 percent from the floor and 46.9 percent from three. A smart passer and defender (2.7 steal percentage), he appears one step away as a scorer from generating NBA draft buzz. He’ll have his chance with Payton Pritchard graduating. 

Stats courtesy of Sports-Reference.com, RealGM.com

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