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Added June 28th, 2016 by Ian
NBA

Recapping the top 10 NBA Draft Picks 


The 2016 NBA Draft was held on June 23rd with a total of 60 players being taken with 22 of the 30 first-round picks coming from American colleges.

The Philadelphia 76ers had the number one overall pick and took Australian forward Ben Simmons out of LSU (Louisiana State University). Simmons has a lot of upside and most experts feel he’ll become a regular all-star in the league even though there have been concerns about his leadership qualities in college. The last time Philadelphia had the top selection they drafted Allen Iverson, so they’re hoping Simmons may end up being just as good. The 19-year-old Simmons, who is 6-feet-10-inches tall, is the first LSU player to be taken number one overall. There was some sad news for the Simmons family though as Ben’s cousin Zachary Simmons was killed by a hit and run driver in Hoboken, New Jersey two days after the draft.

The Los Angeles Lakers took forwards Brandon Ingram out of Duke with the second pick. The 18-year-old stands 6-feet-10-inches tall and has a wingspan of 87-inches. A lot of people compare Ingram to Kevin Durant and he’s another player who has the potential to be an all-star in the league if he can beef up a little bit as he’s just 200 lbs. If he does, he could be the franchise player the Lakers are looking for.

The Boston Celtics had the third selection and took forward Jaylen Brown from Cal. Brown was rated as the top player in the draft by many experts so the Celtics may have gotten a steal. Brown was one of the most athletic players available and Boston was thought to have been considering trading their pick to either Chicago or Philadelphia and is probably now glad they didn’t.

The Phoenix Suns took Croatian forward Dragan Bender with the fourth choice and he’s the first international-based player to be drafted this year. Bender could make a huge difference to the team’s frontcourt down the road as he’s 7-feet-1-inch tall and can play anywhere at forward and centre. He’s just 18 though and may need a couple of years to adjust to the North American game.

The fifth pick went to the Minnesota Timberwolves and they selected guard Kris Dunn from Providence. Dunn should fit in well in Minnesota and new head coach Tom Thibodeau. He’s a powerful and versatile combo guard who will eventually play alongside Andrew Wiggins. Dunn was named the player of the year and the defensive player of the year in the Big East twice.

The New Orleans Pelicans selected sixth and chose guard Buddy Hield from Oklahoma. Hield was regarded as one of the top American college players last season and has the potential to be the same in the NBA. He’s known as a knock down shooter and will help out all-star forward Anthony Davis. It may take Hield some time to crack the Pelicans’ lineup as he’s behind Tyrke Evans, Jrue Holiday and Eric Gordon on the depth chart.

The Denver Nuggets selected guard Jamal Murray from Kentucky with the seventh pick. Murray is from Kitchener, Ontario, making him the first Canadian to be chosen in the draft. Murray has a good outside shot and that should help Denver since they were close to the bottom of the league last year when it came to three-point shooting. Most experts believe Murray is ready to step right into the NBA, but he’ll need to work on his defensive game.

The Phoenix Suns picked again at number eight as they acquired the pick in an earlier deal with the Sacramento Kings. They chose forward Marquese Chriss from Washington with the selection. He’s 6-feet-10-inches and weighs 230 lbs. and is considered to be the best big player in the draft behind Simmons and Ingram. The Suns’ best players are in the backcourt, so Chriss is an excellent choice due to his athleticism and three-point shooting. However, he still might be a year or two away from being ready.

The league’s lone Canadian team the Toronto Raptors had the ninth pick and chose Austrian centre Jakob Poeltl out of Utah. The Raptors are hoping Poetl can step into the lineup this season. He’s regarded as a fine rebounder and scorer and will be depended on in the frontcourt especially if free agent Bismack Biyombo signs elsewhere during the offseason.

The 10th pick went to the Milwaukee Bucks and they took centre Thon Maker, who like Simmons hails from Australia. Maker’s roots can be traced back to Sudan though and he’s 7-feet-1-inch tall. He’s not overly experienced and most experts didn’t rank him as high as 10th. He’s big and athletic though, but is still seen as a bit of a gamble at number 10 overall.

 
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