I decided to throw together a big board giving some of my thoughts on my opinion top 35 prospects to try and spark some discussion. In terms of formatting i'm going to go like this:
Current/Future Grade: This is a baseball thing i think could work really well in discussing prospects. Basically on a 10-80 scale you grade an nba player typically in increments of five like so:
10 Basically unplayable in NBA fringe D1 college player
20 Well Below Average Nba Player
30 Below Average Nba player (Ekpe Udoh)
40 Average Nba player (role player) (Carlos Delfino)
50 Can start in situations, good role player (Ramon Sessions, Mike Dunleavy Jr)
60 Starting quality player in NBA, Might make one or two all stars games typically impacts the court on both ends (Klay Thompson, Nicholas Batum)
80 Top 30 Player all time, Once in a decade talent (Kevin Durant, Lebron James)
Things to keep in mind with above system For baseball they use it to grade skills like power, arm, curveball. I adjusted it because I think it has merits that can work well in Nba Draft reports. I will also tier the prospects. I think one important thing to keep in mind is just because a player has a higher ceiling doesn't make him a better prospect. For example if both of them completely refine all their skills Gordon will be much better than Parker because he is more athletic, but Parker is clearly a better prospect because of his place on the development curve. Also the future grades reflect their realistic ceilings. Some players like Aaron Gordon have the potential to be top 30 all time but it is highly unlikely.
Tier 1: Blue Chip Prospects
1.) Andrew Wiggins
World Class Athlete. I really think Andrew Wiggins can be a top 10 all time player. As much as i hate player comparisons i see Wiggin's floor as Andre Iguodala. Great defenders and slashers Averaging 16+ PPG. I think Wiggins will become a better shot creator than Iguodala though. Imagine McGrady's offense with Paul George's defense.
2.) Jabari Parker
Terrific shot creator. Gets knocked for his athleticism because he isn't Andrew Wiggins. Had a bad injury his senior year of high school that caused him to come into college heavier than he wanted. Wiggins is a phenomenal Athlete, but Parker is above average even for an NBA player. Think his defense is underrated because he played out of position at Duke. I'm curious who would be a better shootaround shooter Wiggins or Parker, Parker seems to be much more of an in game player.
3.) Joel Embiid
First slash is if he becomes Greg Oden 2.0. The reason Embiid is below Wiggins and Parker is his ability to stay on the court. It isn't so much the back injury as it is the fact that he played 10 less minutes per game than Wiggins and Parker. Extrapolated over a full season in the Nba what would you rather have 1200 minutes of embiid or 1800 of Wiggins. I'm concerned about his ability to stay healthy and in good condition.
Tier 2: Australian Mysteries
4.) Dante Exum
Could be anything he really is that much of a mystery. His upside is tantalizing, but the lack of exposure leaves his floor lower than is desired for a top pick. He has phenomenal speed. His shooting is knocked, but most of those complaints are based on dated film. I think he is a better shooter than given credit for. I do have concerns about the longterm longevity of these freak athlete oversized point guards. (Westbrook, Rose, Wall, Bledsoe)
Tier 3: Guys you want to love but are missing pieces to the puzzle that is
life err the NBA
5.) Noah Vonleh
Measured out extraordinarily well at the combine. Demonstrated an ability to consistently make the 3 ball. Was however not utilized very well at Indiana, despite being the most talented starter had the lowest usage rate of the starting five. Rebounded fantastically in college, only player in the Big Ten to average a double-double
6.) Aaron Gordon
Superb Athlete. Out of the top 8 his college team had the most success, and while he played a crucial part he wasn't the best player on his team. He did however show fantastic defense, possibly the most refined defender from this draft class. He was a very poor shooter in college. Fun Fact: shot 7% better from the free throw line than the 3 point line. He shot 42% from the free throw line and 35 from the 3. Actually shot better from the three point line in the second half over 40%.
7.) Marcus Smart
Measured a little shorter than expected at the combine. Really hurt his stock by returning. Shooting improved marginally. Turnovers didn't make much of a move. Still a warrior defensively though. Character a small question mark, although coaches and teammates rave about his intangibles.
8.) Dario Saric
Won the league's mvp and final four mvp in the Adriatic League one of then more respected European Leagues. Did it all as a point forward. Never going to be a plus athlete, but is athletic enough for his skills to play. Very skilled finesse player.
9.) Jusuf Nurkic
Very nimble big man from the Adriatic League, shot blocker. Has very good upside. I really like the film i've seen, seems to have a very good feel for the game and the kid has ups.
10.) Julius Randle
Rebounds tremendously. Very dominant in the low post. I would love him alot more if any of the following were true: 2' taller, 2' bigger wingspan, Had a better right hand, Attempted and/or Made a 3 in college. I've heard his faceup game is better than one would imagine, but until i see it I'm not going to believe it. We have just seen that happen too much.
Tier 4: Solid but not flashy contributors.
11.) Gary Harris
Shot the ball pretty well both years of college, has a smooth stroke. Very good athlete. A little bit short for the shooting guard spot, but alot of scouts think he has the ability to play some point. Good defender both on and off ball. Great wingspan for both spots. Projects to be at a minimum a 3 & D guy.
12.) Nik Stauskas
Shoots fantastically. Showed good handles and court vision as a sophomore. Demonstrated at the combine that he is more athletic than your typical shooter from the big ten. Probably won't ever be a plus defender, but shouldn't hurt his team there either.
13.) James Young
Was actually preferred by some scouts to Randle entering the season for kentucky. Three point stroke looks better than the numbers indicate. Is a standout athlete but can't bring much of that to the game as he was mainly limited to spot up attempts this year at Kentucky. Could be a plus defender down the line, but showed alot of mental lapses in his freshmen year.
14.) Rodney Hood
Put up fantastic numbers this season before kind of falling off at the end. Very good athlete and a good college defender with the athletic ability to make an impact on that side of the ball. Shoots very well and has plus size for either wing position.
15.) Adreian Payne
Probably won't ever be an all-star but is a good shooter especially considering his size. Good athlete and post defender, has the ability to block alot of shots. Main value comes from his ability to space the floor. Solid rebounder.
Tier 5.) Guys who can ball, but have more serious questions
16.) PJ Hairston
Good shooter with good size for the SG position. Good on ball defender. I would make sure my team gets a good interview with him, but his issues at UNC weren't near as bad as prospects who went alot higher in their respective drafts.
17.) Elfrid Payton
Great athlete, but played against subpar competition all year. His one tournament game still wasn't against a team with any great athletes (Creighton). Did shine in tournament though. Below Average shooter, but very young junior. Good defender
18.) Zach Lavine
Should have stayed one more year, but wasn't guaranteed playing time at UCLA. Had some truly jaw dropping dunks this season that I highly recommend viewing. Great athlete and a good shooter, just didn't put it all together enough this season.
19.) Doug Mcdermott
Won almost every National Player of the Year award. I have serious questions about his defensive chops in the NBA though. He also beat up on a bad conference his first three years followed by beating up on a watered down Big East, wish I could have seen him play against some better defenses/athletes. I think he might be one of those great college players that can't hack it in the NBA
20.) Clint Capela
I will admit he is a foreign prospect I know very little about. That said, i am intrigued. He is very raw from what i hear and read. He is a good athlete with good length and height for both PF and C. I've read that he can shoot. I put him this high as more of an upside/mystery pick.
Tier 6: Best of the Rest
21.) TJ Warren
Best mid range scorer in this draft. Unfortunately that isn't a role teams draft. If he shot 3's at a decent clip he would be higher. Tested better then expected at combine, but still isn't a phenomenal athlete by any means.
22.) Kyle Anderson
What will he be in the future? Could be an interesting player at the 1-4. Wish he shot a little better, but at the minimum will be an extra facilitator for the team that drafts him.
23.) K.J. McDaniels
ACC DPOY. Defense is what he brings, not much of a scorer but with proper coaching could play a valuable role for alot of teams.
24.) Tyler Ennis
Feel like if he was a sophomore and declared he'd go late second or undrafted. He got most of his draft stock for his ability to run an offense as a freshmen. Made some big shots, but wasn't a great shooter. Definitely has room for improvement, but will probably be a good defender for his position.
25.) Shabazz Napier
Curious to see how his distributing skills would look if he was surrounded with more talent. Thought he played more like a shooting guard. Proven Winner. Bit undersized for the point guard spot, not a stand out athlete. Could start in a role like Mario Chalmers, but at a minimum will be a rock solid back up point guard.
26.) Jarnell Stokes
Rebounds very well, but is undersized for the power forward position. Probably best suited to back up a power forward could average a double double in that role though if he got 21+ Mpg. Good Vertical, good basket ball IQ.
27.) Jordan Adams
Decent shooter. Below average athlete, but still managed to average 2+ steals per game. A little undersized for the SG position, but has good length. If he can shoot 40+% from 3 could play a big role for a team.
28.) Walter Tavares
Could be an upside draft and stash guy, is huge 7'3" in shoes. A bit old at 22, but blocks alot of shots.
29.) Jerami Grant
Short for the power forward spot but doesn't shoot well enough to be a small forward. If he had either of the aforementioned traits he'd be 10 spots higher. He is a great leaper.
30.) Glenn Robinson
Good Athlete, seemed like he had another gear that he just never reached at Michigan. Decent shooter, was hurt by playing almost PF exclusively at UM.
31.) Cleanthony Early
Questionable athlete. Played his best game against the most athletic team he faced though. I wish he would have had better regular season numbers though. He played against vastly inferior athletes.
32.) Mitch McGary
22 is very old for a college player that hasn't played 40 games. Back issues could prevent him from being effective. Is pro marijuana if that does anything for ya?
33.) Thanasis Antetokounmpo
Good defender and athlete. Got the benefit of playing D-league all year which gave him more scouting then most foreign prospects get.
34.) Spencer Dinwiddie
Looked to be a mid twenties pick before he tore his ACL good size for the SG spot, but played the point at Colorado. Good athlete assuming all goes well in his rehab.
35.) Bogdan Bogdovic
Good size for the SG position. Hope he shows improvements as a shooter and limits turnovers.
I would have done more if I felt like I knew anything about some of the guys later. I tried to keep it brief, but still provide a good description of them. I would love some constructive criticism. Especially if you think I ranked a guy wrong.