The 2018 NBA Draft is only days away! The Boston Globe held their fourth annual NBA Beat Writers Mock Draft today, and Brew Hoop was lucky enough to be invited back to once again represent your Milwaukee Bucks. Just like last year, the Bucks hold the 17th overall selection. This time, instead of taking a huge swing (and taking a chance on Harry Giles), we followed our own advice; we grabbed (did not reach!) Elie Okobo of Pau-Lacq-Orthez (France). My blurb:
The Bucks have a task that is easy to describe and difficult to execute: fully leverage the incomparable talent of Giannis Antetokounmpo. To do so, Milwaukee needs to ensure that he is surrounded by shooters as often as possible. Elie Okobo, the point guard from France, presents the most dynamic option available, and he should be able to join Mike Budenholzer’s guard rotation this season.
To expand further on why I liked Okobo for this pick, I’m of the opinion that shooting ought to be the top priority for this offseason. There might be some cheap free agency options available, but few of those players are going to present the same sort of cost-controlled benefits that a draft pick does, and Okobo’s shooting (38.5% from deep over three seasons in Europe) is an attractive option. Half of Okobo’s shots are threes, and he is clearly unafraid to let it fly off the dribble, a skill that few Bucks players have demonstrated.
There are some reasonable concerns about Okobo’s game, particularly around his lack of polish as a playmaker, and the always-difficult transition into the American game. He’s an adequate defender in Europe, but how will he hold up in the NBA? Fortunately, expectations in Milwaukee should be relatively low during his first season. He could be able to ease into his new role, and with Giannis and Khris Middleton taking the majority of the Bucks’ playmaking duties, Okobo’s weaknesses could be masked. Sports Illustrated has a more in-depth breakdown here.
Be sure to check out the entire mock draft here, and thanks again to the Boston Globe for putting this all together. Be sure to let them know what you think, and leave us a comment while you’re at it!