Tonight is officially the NBA draft, where the Miami Heat will be selecting at pick 20. Well, maybe.
There’s been discussion of Miami either including the pick in a trade after they make their selection, or using it to trade down to the second round. Since both are viable options, here are three possible picks for Miami at 20, and two possible picks in the second round.
First Round Possibilities
1. Vernon Carey Jr
This one is pretty obvious, since it’s somebody I’ve been discussing for a while now. Vernon Carey Jr is a quality young big, who can do a some of the things that Bam Adebayo doesn’t. For one, he thrives with his back to the basket in the post, and it’s obvious Bam enjoys facing up the basket. He also has the ability to stretch the floor, which is something he mentioned quite a lot in his media session. And clearly his ties with the Miami Heat make this a viable pick, and I believe he could fit in well, especially since Miami may not have a backup big if Kelly Olynyk gets moved.
2. Zeke Nnaji
Zeke Nnaji is another big man that I believe Miami will take a look at. For one, the first team he worked out for in this pre-draft process was the Miami Heat. When Miami is looking at these players, I believe they try to find a unique quality that they can bring. And Nnaji has an immense amount of energy that he brings every night, which appeals to Miami. He also has gotten his body right as of late, which he kept reiterating to media that he was down to 5.9% body fat, while adding 20 pounds of muscle. I think he’s a solid fit for Miami if they go for a big man at pick 20.
3. Desmond Bane
Now, Desmond Bane seems to be the guy that Miami Heat fans love the most, and rightfully so. First off, he’s a very polished player already, and that is what Miami will be looking for in this draft. He’s an outstanding shooter from deep, and actually was used quite similarly to Duncan Robinson when he was in college. He would run off a bunch of screens to find open shots, but still can score off the dribble. He also has a very high defensive motor, which if Miami takes a guard or a wing, it’ll be one who can play on the defensive end.
Second Round Possibilities
4. Ashton Hagans
Now, the reason I think there’s such a high chance Miami trades down to the second round is because there are many great options in that range. The one that I’ve mentioned a lot that will stick out to Miami is Kentucky guard Ashton Hagans. It’s clear he won’t bring much offensive impact upon arrival, but Miami has enough offensive talent. Instead he can bring his biggest strength, which is everything that involves the defensive side of the ball. He can pick you up full court, hit the passing lanes, and endures quickness to stay on his man one-on-one through screens. This defensive talent will stand out to Miami, which is why I believe if they trade down to the second round, it’ll be for Ashton Hagans.
5. Immanuel Quickley
The other possible second round pick is no surprise, another Kentucky guard. Miami loves their Kentucky players, and there are plenty of them in this draft. Immanuel Quickley is a solid 3 and D guy, who shoots the three ball at a very high level. He gets labeled as a catch and shoot guy since that was his role at Kentucky, but it’s clear he will be much more than that at the next level. He can take guys off the dribble when needed, which is why he reminds me of Tyler Herro coming out of college, since he was labeled as a catch and shoot guy as well. His defensive presence is mostly effective on individual assignments, which is what Miami needs, but does lack some quality team defensive attributes. Either way, Immanuel Quickley is a super talented prospect who will appeal to Miami. And at the end of the day, if Miami selects a Kentucky Wildcat, it’s a successful draft.