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Thursday, August 6, 2020

Latest mock draft predicts future for Pistons, two MSU players

The 2020 NBA Draft has been pushed back to October 16 thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic that caused the pausing of the 2019-20 season back in March.

CBS Sports put forth their latest mock draft that gives a potential glimpse at who the Detroit Pistons could select, as well as the futures of two popular Michigan State Spartans.

According to Gary Parish, he has the Pistons selecting 6’9, 245 lb. power forward Onyeka Okongwu out of USC:

“Onyeka Okongwu mostly operated off the national radar this past season because he played for an unranked team on the West Coast,” Parrish explained. “But he was fantastic rather quickly. … He’s the main reason USC won 16 of its first 20 games and would’ve been in the NCAA Tournament if the NCAA Tournament would’ve been played.

“Is he an undersized big? Yes, probably. But he’s an undersized big who can play multiple positions. And, either way, the NBA is now littered with undersized bigs. So even though Okongwu wasn’t thought of this way coming out of high school, it’s now reasonable to call him the second-best big prospect in the draft.”

Okongwu was a four year starter at Chino Hills High School and played with both Lonzo and LaMelo Ball, and is viewed as one of the top prospects in this year’s Draft.

Meanwhile, Parish has predicted both Cassius Winston and Xavier Tillman to be taken in the 1st round, with Winston teaming up with LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers, while Tillman to head east to suit up for the Boston Celtics:

“Cassius Winston is perceived to be limited because he’s small and not the best athlete. He’ll never measure or test great — and that’ll turn some franchises away,” Parrish writes. “But he’s smart, great in pick-and-roll situations and someone who has proven to be a high-level shooter in all four years of college by making 43.0% of the 602 3-pointers he attempted in his four-year college career.

“Teams picking in this range are often good teams already winning in search of a piece who can maybe help immediately. And Winston is somebody who could probably help an NBA team immediately serving as a backup point guard and knockdown shooter.”

“Xavier Tillman used his size and strength to be one of the best defensive bigs in the country this season, one who is also comfortable guarding in space or out on the perimeter,” Parrish says. “… he also made 37% of his 3-point attempts inside the Breslin Center, which suggests he should be able to stretch the floor in the NBA and spend many years in the league as a reliable and quality frontcourt presence.”

How would you feel if these potential scenarios were to play out?

– – Quotes via Gary Parish of CBS Sports Link – –

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Michael Whitaker
Always at the front lines of Detroit Sports.

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