NBA Draft 2022 Rankings

It’s time to analyze the picks now that the NBA Draft for 2022 has actually passed. There is still time for an initial review based on pick value and fit, even if we won’t know how each selection will turn out until these players actually start playing for their new teams.

When analyzing how franchises performed on draught night, there are a few variables to keep in mind. Did they meet a need or did they choose the top talent on the market? Did they go after a certain talent or did they select a guy later than anticipated in the draught? Did each franchise’s moves match the tempo and direction of the current roster?

The Sporting News graded each organization for its performance on draught night, ranking all 30 teams while taking those considerations into account.

 

Detroit Pistons

Grade: A+

Without a doubt, the Pistons came out on top that evening. They secured their future backcourt with Cade Cunningham when Ivey, the top guard in this class, slipped to them at No. 5. Then, Detroit acquired Duren through a trade, adding him to its core of young, gifted top players. Duren is an athletic and physically commanding big man.

 

New Orleans Pelicans

Grade: A+

On draught night, the Pelicans kept things simple but executed everything correctly. Daniels is the kind of NBA-ready player with a defensive mindset that New Orleans’ developing roster requires to advance one step closer to being a consistent postseason team. Junior forward Liddell, who many draught pundits, including me, had projected to go in the top 20, was a steal for the Pelicans later in the selection.

 

Orlando Magic

Grade: A+

Simply because I think they made the appropriate choice with the first pick, The Magic are third on this list. Banchero, who Orlando selected, is in my opinion the finest player in this draught class, even though Jabari Smith Jr. was thought to be their guy right up until the very last second. The Magic now have a franchise player and go-to guy in Houstan thanks to the Duke product, along with a promising young wing.

 

San Antonio Spurs

Grade: A+

This draught was perfect for the Spurs. Sochan is a dynamic defensive player who can be used to bolster Keldon Johnson’s athletic frontcourt. One of the best pure scorers in this draught class, Branham was a steal at No. 20. Wesley is the kind of high-potential guard who might turn out to be a gem amid San Antonio’s rough. This draught class will play a significant role in the Spurs returning to their winning ways a few years from now.

 

Basketball Players 2022
Basketball Players 2022

Oklahoma City Thunder

Grade: A

Although I didn’t like the Thunder’s decision to deal three (three!) future first-round picks to the Knicks in order to get the 11th pick to select Dieng, I have to admire their strategy. In this draught, Oklahoma City focused on length and upside potential. They gained 21 feet and 8 inches of wingspan to their first three lottery selections. Dieng and Holmgren have highly special talents. The offensive threat Jalen Williams is adaptable. On both ends of the floor, Jaylin Williams is a dog. I’m excited to watch how the Thunder’s home run pick in this draught turns out.

 

Houston Rockets

Grade: A

It’s possible that the Rockets went into the night expecting to sign Banchero but ended up with Smith. That’s actually a good thing. Smith still fills a need at power forward for the Rockets, who can use him as a foundation along with No. 2 overall pick Jalen Green. At No. 17, they made a floor-raising selection in defensive stopper Eason. At the end of the first round, they selected Washington, who was previously considered a top-10 pick in this class. The Rockets had a productive evening.

New York Knicks

Grade: A

Why did the Knicks receive a “A” grade even though Keels was only selected in the second round? The Thunder received their No. 11 pick in exchange for three first-round picks in 2023. I don’t think there was one player available at No. 11 who would have drastically altered New York’s franchise, despite the fact that there were still some outstanding prospects on the board. In what is thought to be a very strong draught, adding three first-round picks in 2023 makes solid business sense, especially when taking into account the more cap room freed up to pursue significant free-agent signings.

Indiana Pacers

Grade: A

I believed the Pacers were successful in all three of their picks. With Tyrese Haliburton, Mathurin is the ideal scoring wing to form Indiana’s future backcourt. Nembhard is a pure floor general who will have a successful career as a backup guard in the league. Brown, who was a bit of a steal at No. 48, is an athletic freak with enormous upside potential. On draught night, the Pacers improved and secured their future.

Sacramento Kings

Grade: B+

The Kings will be given some grace for passing on Ivey, but Murray fills an immediate need. The Iowa forward will blend in well with the Kings’ starting lineup of De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis since he is a versatile defender and an easy scorer. He is an NBA-ready player who will assist Sacramento in its immediate attempt to end its playoff skid.

Portland Trail Blazers

Grade: B+

All-Star guard Damian Lillard reportedly admired Sharpe’s potential the day before the selection, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. And whose lottery pick did the Blazers make? Sharpe. The explosive scorer from Kentucky will benefit much from Lillard’s guidance. Portland signed a player on Day 1 who can contribute offensively right away off the bench.

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