Charlotte Hornets

NBA mock draft: Michael Porter is wild card, but a Wildcat more likely for Hornets

Charlotte Hornets general manager Mitch Kupchak said the team has the medical information it would need if Missouri's Michael Porter is available at No. 11. Porter played only three games last season due to a back injury that required surgery.
Charlotte Hornets general manager Mitch Kupchak said the team has the medical information it would need if Missouri's Michael Porter is available at No. 11. Porter played only three games last season due to a back injury that required surgery. AP File Photo

With the NBA draft set for Thursday, here is Charlotte Observer NBA writer Rick Bonnell's mock first round:

1. Phoenix Suns: DeAndre Ayton, Arizona, 7-0: A true center body who can dribble and make 3-pointers.

2. Sacramento Kings: Marvin Bagley, Duke, 6-11: A big man whose offensive skills instantly translate to the NBA.

3. Atlanta Hawks: Jaren Jackson, Michigan State, 6-11: The Hawks need a star; Jackson has so much potential.

4. Memphis Grizzlies: Luka Doncic, Slovenian pro, 6-8: He has the skills to assemble many NBA triple-doubles.

5. Dallas Mavericks: Mohamed Bamba, Texas, 7-0: At his best, he’ll impact games as a rim protector like Rudy Gobert.

6. Orlando Magic: Trae Young, Oklahoma, 6-2: A point guard with crazy shooting range and skill to pile up assists.

7. Chicago Bulls: Michael Porter, Missouri, 6-10: The Bulls got first look at Porter’s medical reports, key after back surgery.

8. Cleveland Cavaliers: Collin Sexton, Alabama, 6-2: Explosive in transition and in the pick-and-roll. Great competitor.

9. New York Knicks: Wendell Carter, Duke, 6-10: Can complement now-injured Knicks star Kristaps Porzingis.

10. Philadelphia 76ers: Mikal Bridges, Villanova, 6-7: The Sixers need shooting; Bridges provides that and versatile defense.

11. Charlotte Hornets: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Kentucky, 6-6: A long point guard; backup-understudy to Kemba Walker.

12. Los Angeles Clippers: Miles Bridges, Michigan State, 6-7: A good shooter who might play either forward spot.

13. Los Angeles Clippers: Lonnie Walker, Miami, 6-5: Will take big shots and make his share; slowed last season early by injury.

14. Denver Nuggets: Kevin Knox, Kentucky, 6-9: Good size and talented; did not make the most of opportunity at Kentucky.

15. Washington Wizards: Robert Williams, Texas A&M, 6-9: A strong defender who needs lots of offensive refinement.

16. Phoenix Suns: Zhaire Smith, Texas Tech, 6-4: A great athlete, but he’ll need to improve considerably on offense at the NBA level.

17. Milwaukee Bucks: Troy Brown, Oregon, 6-7: Good size for a potential shooting guard; didn’t dominate with Ducks.

18. San Antonio Spurs: Dante DiVincenzo, Villanova, 6-5: Will play some at either guard spot, would fit Spurs’ motion offense.

19. Atlanta Hawks: Mitchell Robinson, (no college), 7-0: Has essentially been off the grid for a year, but big-time potential gain.

20. Minnesota Timberwolves: Keita Bates-Diop, Ohio State, 6-8: In length, skill set he has the look of a player Tom Thibodeau would value.

21. Utah Jazz: Kevin Huerter, Maryland, 6-7: Hand surgery means he’ll miss summer league, but should be ready for training camp.

22. Chicago Bulls: Anfernee Simons (no college), 6-3, A combo guard with some shooting range to spread defenses.

23. Indiana Pacers: Gary Trent, Jr., Duke, 6-5: Doesn’t wow as an athlete, but strong body for a guard and 3-point range.

24. Portland Trail Blazers: Chandler Hutchison, Boise State, 6-7: Probably closer to being ready to play now than many of these guys.

25. Los Angeles Lakers: Jerome Robinson, Boston College, 6-5: Dramatically improved 3-point shooting to 41 percent last season.

26. Philadelphia 76ers: Omari Spellman, Villanova, 6-9: Adds front-court depth on a rookie-scale contract to a team with established starters.

27. Boston Celtics: Grayson Allen, Duke, 6-4: Allen might fit best in the NBA as a changeup off the bench on a contender.

28. Golden State Warriors: Aaron Holiday, UCLA, 6-1: He has the quickness off the dribble to break down defenses.

29. Brooklyn Nets: Jalen Brunson, Villanova, 6-2: Sophisticated understanding of the game, but defense on the ball will be a challenge.

30. Atlanta Hawks: Elie Okobo, French pro, 6-2: Could be stashed in Europe to develop for down the road.

Rick Bonnell: , 704-358-5129; @rick_bonnell

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