Joel Welser NBA Mock Draft - 25 June 2012

1. Anthony Davis 2. Harrison Barnes 3. Michael Gilchrist 4. Bradley Beal 5. Thomas Robinson
Round 1
1New Orleans Hornets 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesNew OrleansAnthony DavisPFKentucky
New Orleans won the Anthony Davis lottery and the Hornets have done nothing to indicate that they could do something unexpected and not take the former Kentucky star. Davis is a beast on the defensive end and has the star power and athleticism to be a superstar in New Orleans.
2Charlotte Bobcats 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesCharlotteHarrison BarnesSFNorth Carolina
Charlotte has to be disappointed not to end up with Anthony Davis. Then the workouts began and this pick could be Thomas Robinson, Michael Gilchrist or Harrison Barnes. The latest rumors out of Charlotte are that the team really likes former Tar Heel Barnes. He does fill a bigger need a small forward than Robinson does at power forward. And Charlotte can build around the Carolina Blue.
3Washington Wizards 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesWashingtonMichael GilchristSFKentucky
There are some quality options in this draft after Anthony Davis. The Wizards will be able to get a good one here with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. Gilchrist is a superb athlete and the Wizards may regret not taking him if they have the chance.
4Cleveland Cavaliers 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesClevelandBradley BealPGFlorida
With shooting guard Bradley Beal still on the board, Cleveland may have a tough decision to make. With Thomas Robinson being the surprise slide in this scenario, he may be too good to pass up. However, Beal is a nice fit for Cleveland and he can score in bunches.
5Sacramento Kings 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesSacramentoThomas RobinsonPFKansas
If things play out this way Sacramento will be a little disappointed. The front office wants a player who can make an immediate impact and they need help at small forward the most. With Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Harrison Barnes gone and the unwillingness to develop a player like Andre Drummond, the Kings have no other option but Thomas Robinson. He is a good deal at number five though.
6Portland Trail Blazers 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesPortland (from BRK)Andre DrummondCConnecticut
Andre Drummond is a huge risk, but Portland has the luxury of taking it. Most importantly they have another pick at the 11 slot, but the dire need for interior players also makes the big man from Connecticut too tough to turn down.
7Golden State Warriors 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesGolden StateJeremy LambSFConnecticut
There appears to be a perceived drop off in talent after the first six picks. Assuming all goes as planned with the first six, which is not a safe assumption, Golden State will have to go down to the next tier of players. Golden State was not happy with Terrence Jones or Perry Jones, but they still want a small forward. Taking a backcourt player like Dion Waiters to come in off of the bench does not make sense this early in the draft either. Jeremy Lamb makes the most sense if the Warriors believe he can play at the three spot and not just be a shooting guard.
8Toronto Raptors 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesTorontoAustin RiversSGDuke
Toronto needs a shooter and after Bradley Beal, Austin Rivers is among the best in this class. There will be some players who can knock down three's better than Rivers, but he has plenty of upside and some teams like his swagger. Toronto could be one of them.
9Detroit Pistons 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesDetroitTyler ZellerCNorth Carolina
The Pistons seem set on finding somebody to team up with Greg Monroe up front. There are plenty of options at this point in the draft and Meyers Leonard and Arnett Moultrie have higher ceilings, but Tyler Zeller is the safer pick. Jared Sullinger is another option, but after a bad week leading up to the draft, he is likely falling to the middle of the first round.
10New Orleans Hornets 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesNew Orleans (from MIN)Damian LillardPGWeber State
Jarrett Jack could be gone after the upcoming season, leaving a big hole at point guard in New Orleans. The nice thing about Damian Lillard is that he can score too. The point guard of the future could be an offensive spark off of the bench right now. The Hornets would not get that from Kendall Marshall.
11Portland Trail Blazers 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesPortlandTerrence RossSFWashington
Portland's backcourt struggled last season. Injuries had a lot to do with it, but this is still a team that could use some youth and scoring prowess on the perimeter. Terrence Ross is a big wing who is shooting up draft boards right now. If Portland feels comfortable not taking a point guard here, Ross or Dion Waiters should be the pick.
12Milwaukee Bucks 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesMilwaukeePerry JonesPFBaylor
Milwaukee desperately needs some big bodies. A true center like Meyers Leonard is definitely an option, but Leonard will need some time to develop his game. Jones will need to get tougher too, but he is more ready than Leonard to fill the big void in the Bucks frontcourt right away.
13Phoenix Suns 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesPhoenixDion WaitersSGSyracuse
Somebody gave Dion Waiters a lottery guarantee, at least that is the way it seems after he pulled out of the Chicago Combine. The Suns are in need of a tough shooting guard like Waiters, so it is likely them, although Portland at #11 is also a possibility.
14Houston Rockets 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesHoustonKendall MarshallPGNorth Carolina
Houston will be very lucky if Kendall Marshall falls this far. They need a big man and a point guard with their two first round picks and now is the time to jump on the best pure point guard in this draft if he is still available.
15Philadelphia 76ers 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesPhiladelphiaJohn JenkinsSGVanderbilt
Philadelphia needs a shooter and few players in the nation are as capable from long range as John Jenkins. The Vanderbilt team may have fizzled, yet again, in March, but Jenkins still had a superb season and can be a difference maker in the NBA. His lack of flashiness may cause him to drop into the late first round or early second, but if you want a shooter, Jenkins is your man.
16Houston Rockets 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesHouston (from NY)Meyers LeonardCIllinois
The Rockets got their point guard two picks ago and now they need a big man. Meyers Leonard could be long gone by now, but he probably shouldn't be. He is a project, but a true seven-footer, Leonard is brimming with undeserved potential. 
17Dallas Mavericks 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesDallasTerrence JonesPFKentucky
The deep crop of power forwards in this class will be good news for Dallas and bad news for some of the power forwards. The Mavericks could use somebody who can hit the glass a little bit and Terrence Jones can do that. The former Kentucky star will be able to ease his way into the Dallas rotation.
18Minnesota Timberwolves 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesMinnesota (from UTAH)Jared SullingerPFOhio State
The slide of Jared Sullinger has to stop somewhere. Back injuries have derailed the build up to his NBA Draft fun, but somebody will take a chance on him sooner or later, most likely in the 14 to 18 range. For the record, Houston will regret taking Meyers Leonard over Jared Sullinger in five years.
19Orlando Magic 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesOrlandoArnett MoultriePFMississippi State
Arnett Moultrie could be long gone by this point in the draft, but he is an older player and that is hurting his draft stock a little bit. Talent wise, Moultrie is a borderline lottery pick. And that works out just fine for Orlando who need to prove that they can win right away.
20Denver Nuggets 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesDenverJohn HensonPFNorth Carolina
Denver has no real needs, so they get to take the best player available and that is John Henson. This is another example of just how deep this class of power forwards appears to be. Henson could be a lottery pick, but there are just so many other quality power forwards out there that somebody has to fall.
21Boston Celtics 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesBostonMoe HarklessSFSt. John's
Boston has two picks in a row. They need an upgrade in the post with one of them, but for now they can nab a talented small forward with a  ton of upside. Moe Harkless had a great freshman year at St. John's and is a beast on the boards and a capable slasher.
22Boston Celtics 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesBoston (from LAC)Andrew NicholsonPFSt. Bonaventure
Few big men are as versatile offensively as Andrew Nicholson. Boston could go for a project player like Fab Melo here, but Nicholson has plenty of size at 6-10 and can do things offensively right now that Melo may never be able to do. 
23Atlanta Hawks NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesAtlantaFab MeloCSyracuse
Injuries ravaged Atlanta's frontcourt last season and they should address that at some point in this draft. Fab Melo is a talented player with a lot of potential. For now, he can at least grab some boards and play some defense.
24Cleveland Cavaliers 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesCleveland (from LAL)Will BartonSGMemphis
Cleveland has a lot of needs besides point guard. They picked up Harrison Barnes with the fourth overall pick and now they can make their backcourt extremely strong with the addition of Will Barton. With the 6-6 Barton on the wing with the 6-8 Barnes by his side, the Cavs backcourt will be in pretty good shape.
25Memphis Grizzlies 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesMemphisMarquis TeaguePGKentucky
This is where Memphis can look down the road a little bit and get their point guard of the future. Marquis Teague is a superb value at this point in the draft and he has all the tools to become an elite point guard in the NBA. He just needs some time and Memphis should be able to give it to him.
26Indiana Pacers 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesIndianaEvan FournierSGInternational
Evan Fournier is a very experienced player for his age. The Frenchman is a fine all-around player, but his shot has not been falling lately. It is always nice when a shooting guard can shoot, but Fournier has the skills to help out even if his shot fails to return.
27Miami Heat 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesMiamiJeffery TaylorSFVanderbilt
Jeffery Taylor is a great defender and a hardworking wing. He will need to develop a more consistent outside shot before he becomes a star in the NBA, but Taylor has that potential. And it is that potential that will get him drafted in the first round.
28Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesOklahoma CityFestus EzeliCVanderbilt
Oklahoma City could certainly take a chance on a developmental player. They really do not have any major needs. But if there is a need for the Thunder, it is depth at center. Festus Ezeli is an experienced option who can step in immediately and at least steal some minutes. And as hard as it is to wrap our heads around, this is the third Vanderbilt player drafted in the first round.
29Chicago Bulls 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesChicagoTony Wroton Jr.PGWashington
There are safer backups to Derrick Rose out there, most notably Tyshawn Taylor at this point in the draft, but Tony Wroton Jr. is more than a point guard. At 6-5 he has the size and skill to play alongside Rose or handle the ball. Either way, Wroton is a project after spending just one year at Washington.
30Golden State Warriors 2012 NBA Mock Draft college basketball player profilesGolden State (from SA)Royce WhitePFIowa State
Size is what Golden State will be looking for after selecting Jeremy Lamb earlier in the first round of the 2012 NBA Draft. There are bigger players available, but Royce White is a good bargain at this point in the draft. At 6-8 and a hefty 270 pounds, the versatile forward can play in the post and stretch out the defense with his shooting ability. If the Warriors want more size or are worried about White's "fear of flying," Baylor's Quincy Miller would be a nice backup plan.