September 29, 2022

With the The annual NBA draftthe NCAA Withdrawal Deadline and the lottery project behind us, we are entering the stretching phase of the pre-draft process and there are only a few weeks left before NBA Draft night. Teams are finalizing their draft boards, players are making their final pitches to teams in the form of practices, and the calm before the draft storm is slowly building.

So with nearly every significant pre-draft date in our rearview mirror (except for the NBA’s withdrawal deadline, which is June 13 at 5 p.m. ET), it’s time for a CBS update. Sports NBA Draft Big Board. We’ve had a top 60, then a top 75, and now armed with the full roster of entrants, we’re expanding it to include the top 100 NBA draft prospects. It’s getting real now, guys.

I’ve been ranking these players for months, but in this update I tried to shed any pre-existing notions I had about certain players and this draft class in general. It’s important not to let past biases or beliefs cloud a changing landscape, so this update reflects that as well.

You will notice that despite this, the top of my ranking has stagnated. The top five is the same as our last Grand Council Update, but the back end of the top 10 has been looking spongy for a while, and that’s where you’ll notice my new look giving way to some changes on the board. And so two guys whose game I liked and who are among the most outstanding risers before the draft – Ousmane Dieng and Dyson Daniels – get into the mix there.

Among the fallers in this update are two borderline lottery talents in Ochai Agbaji and Jean Montero. Agbaji maintained his lottery ranking at No. 14 but Montero kept falling and in this update he is out of the first round at the moment. It opened the space for Pat Baldwin Jr., EJ Liddell and others to stand up.

The Top 10 NBA Draft Prospects

Check complete the ranking of the top 100 NBA Draft prospects here

Big Board Risers

Ousmane Dieng, France

Current rank: 9 | Previous ranking: 26

It’s been a slow board build for Dieng for a while now. Checks a ton of boxes like a long wing with major boom potential. At 6-foot-10, he has perimeter guard skills and elite positional height and length. After a strong season in the NBL with the New Zealand Breakers and only turning 19 a few weeks ago, Dieng represents one of the most enticing development prospects in the draft. It’s hard to imagine him slipping out of the lottery given his edge.

Dyson Daniels, G League Ignite

Current rank: 10 | Previous rank: 17

To begin with, the NBA Draft Combine undeniably did Daniels good. He was nearly 6-8 tall in shoes with a wingspan just over 6-10. Positionally, it stacks very well lengthwise and it passes the eyesight test. He’s also had a good month before the draft, with ESPN’s Jonathon Givony going so far as to say he’s generate top five buzz.

I’m not quite there, but I’m not too far. He has the size, the length and, most importantly, the game to be a potential lotto pick. Defense has always been his calling card, but the more I watched him the more impressed I was with him as a passer. He is a mover at worst and a reliable connector and starter at his best. His length, defense and play open up a whole world of possibilities for him where, realistically, he could play every spot in the backcourt.

Patrick Baldwin Jr., Milwaukee

Current rank: 20 | Previous rank: 37

Major whiplash here with Baldwin Jr., the Milwaukee single product that was once top 10 on the chart before dropping to 37 – only to then jump to No. 20. So if your neck hurts, my apologies more sincere. This is a difficult case to classify.

The knock on him was never the talent. He’s an ultra-skilled shooter for his size. It was about his health; he missed most of his senior season in high school due to injury and was also plagued with injuries in college.

If he’s healthy, he’s clearly a first-round talent. So while there are legitimate questions about his medicals, I think it’s appropriate to classify him based on the presumption of good health. Ultimately, it may come down to how much risk a team is willing to take. And, ultimately, a 6-10 forward with near 7-2 wingspan who has a smooth, quick release and can space the floor is someone teams will be happy to bet on — and potentially sooner than expected. If in four years it looks like a failure, it will be because of his health and not because of his game.

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Orlando Robinson, Fresno State

Current rank: 27 | Previous rank: 64

I’m on an island here with Robinson, who isn’t a consensus top-60 prospect let alone top-30 talent – ​​but hey, this island was made for a 7-footer. It’s quite nice!

Robinson improved in each of his three seasons at Fresno State and featured a bit of everything last season. Can put the ball on the ground and create. Good floor spacer. Really nimble. The great mobiles like him are fished out. He’s not the most vertical tall, he’s played three seasons in college and his shot blocking is lacking – all light shots that can be a hindrance for teams. But he’s a top-30 guy for me and someone who, in a draft that doesn’t have a ton of quality crosses, teams should be watching closely at the end of the first or second round.

Big Board Fellers

Jean Montero, Elite Overtime

Current rank: 35 | Previous rank: 20

What Montero can dribble by blowing through defenders and creating is special. He’s a feisty athlete who can unroll a hesitation pull-up at any time or come back at you just splashing a defender. Its shaft is crisp and it reads defenses at a high level.

What Montero can’t do is hang up here for me. Measured 6-1 without shoes at combine, fourth shortest. Not a great defender. Doesn’t have a ton of length. Even when blowing through defenders, finishing in the trees isn’t his forte (although he does have a good touch).

Montero could easily get closer to 20, where he was previously ranked, than 35, where he’s currently ranked, but smaller guards don’t have a huge success rate and he doesn’t have stance size/length elite nor defensive. upside down, which I think raises real questions about its viability as a first-rounder.

Walker Kessler, Auburn

Current rank: 39 | Previous rank: 28

In the NBA, an elite skill usually leads you to a long NBA career. So Kessler’s shot blocking — after ranking first in college basketball in block rate last season — should at worst give him a chance to stay in the NBA.

How Kessler is doing in the NBA in other facets of the game — even on defense just outside the paint — is a bigger concern. His foot speed is slow. Defending it in space is a recipe for success. He blocks and affects shots even in certain situations on the perimeter due to his closing speed and length, but how will his game translate to the NBA?

Of course, I’m skeptical. A fit team for him will be key. He needs the right situation and he will always be a little limited with his mobility. He overcame that and thrived at Auburn, but making it to the next level is a tougher climb.