Although there may not be a future superstar in the 2020 draft class, it’s viewed as a relatively deep group, with potential role players available in round two, writes Sam Vecenie of The Athletic. However, due to the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Vecenie’s sources expect teams to try to get more second-rounders to sign two-way contracts or to play for a year or two overseas.
As Vecenie notes, this could create an interesting dilemma for teams and players in the second round. Last year, prospects like Terence Davis and Luguentz Dort likely would’ve been drafted if they’d been willing to sign two-way deals, but opted to bet on themselves and ended up in good situations (and with more favorable contracts) as undrafted free agents. Vecenie wonders if more prospects will look to follow a similar path and play hardball with teams in 2020.
Here’s more on the draft:
- Within his latest mock draft, Vecenie says that the Timberwolves are doing due diligence on all of the top prospects in the draft, including players like James Wiseman who wouldn’t necessarily be great fits.
- Speaking of Wiseman, Vecenie writes that there’s been some “real enthusiasm” among evaluators about the big man’s play in workouts and in runs with other draft prospects. A number of executives view Wiseman as one of the safest picks in the draft, since his size, length, and athleticism should translate to the NBA, Vecenie adds.
- Addressing the constant rumors coming out of Golden State about the Warriors‘ alleged draft preferences, Vecenie says he thinks the club is trying to mask its true intentions for that No. 2 overall pick in order to retain as much trade value if possible. If rival teams don’t know which player the Warriors actually want at No. 2, it could give Golden State more leverage to make a deal.
- Sources around the NBA have told Vecenie they’d be surprised if TCU’s Desmond Bane falls out of the first round, since so many teams drafting in the 20s could use a sharpshooting wing. Bane is currently the No. 41 prospect on ESPN’s big board.
- According to Jonathan Givony of ESPN (Twitter link), teams picking near the top of the draft were pushing hardest for in-person visits for prospects, and not everyone is thrilled about the concessions made by the NBA. Some executives have concerns about safety and last-minute scheduling, says Givony.