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Jayhawks and almost-Jayhawks all over latest NBA Mock Draft

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Big East's Mitchell Robinson (22) blocks the shot of Big West's Brandon L. McCoy (44) as Jaren Jackson Jr., left, and Brian "Tugs" Bowen II, watch during the second half of the McDonald's All-American boys basketball game Wednesday, March 29, 2017, in Chicago. The West team won 109-107. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Big East's Mitchell Robinson (22) blocks the shot of Big West's Brandon L. McCoy (44) as Jaren Jackson Jr., left, and Brian "Tugs" Bowen II, watch during the second half of the McDonald's All-American boys basketball game Wednesday, March 29, 2017, in Chicago. The West team won 109-107. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) by Matt Tait

Well, it took less than 12 hours for Jonathan Givony, formerly of DraftExpress and currently at ESPN.com to slot Marvin Bagley III into his latest mock draft after the top-rated prospect in the Class of 2018 announced Monday night that he was going to Duke and would attempt to reclassify into the 2017 class.

If successful — and this remains a big if, in my opinion — Bagley will be eligible to play this season and would give Duke a significant lift while speeding up his own path to the NBA.

Kansas cracked the Top 6 for the 6-foot-11, 220-pound forward but could not get any closer than that. While his addition would have helped the KU roster immensely and immediately, Bagley is a sure-fire one-and-done prospect who will be on a college campus for the absolute minimum time required by the NBA's age limit rule.

With that in mind, here's a look at where Bagley lands in Givony's latest Mock Draft for the 2018 NBA Draft, along with a couple of other notable names who cracked his Top 60.

One thing that jumped out at me big time when scrolling down the list was the number of KU targets on it. Six of the Top 17 players in this mock draft seriously considered Kansas during the recruiting process, a sign that Bill Self and company continue to be in on the top talent in the country year in and year out.

• No. 2 - Marvin Bagley III, Boston

Quick take: How about that for good fortune? As if the Celtics have not been on enough of an upswing of late, they now get to add a player like Bagley to their roster. Big things happening in Beantown. For what it's worth, if Bagley winds up going No. 1 overall, Givony's consolation prize is Michael Porter Jr. Either way, Boston's in great shape.

Givony says: Bagley is a fluid athlete with a natural feel for scoring, rebounding and blocking shots, which helps him post elite numbers at the high school and AAU level. He's a terror in the open court and very difficult for opposing big men to stay in front of in one-on-one situations, getting him to the free throw line at an excellent rate. NBA teams will want to see how easily he'll be able to make the transition to the intensity level of the college game and get a better gauge for his defense and outside shooting potential.

• No. 14 - Mitchell Robinson, Portland

Quick take: This is the name Jayhawk fans are dying for news about and there remains a better than good chance that the 7-footer will be in a Kansas uniform this fall. Whether he'll be eligible to play in games remains the biggest question, but his ranking in this mock draft tells us two things: 1. He's a heck of a talent who, if eligible, could make a major difference for the Jayhawks right away. And 2. He's going to be in college (if he goes) for one year at the most. Still, he's worth the effort and KU, no doubt, will do everything it can to get him to town and have him eligible for the 2017-18 season.

Givony says: Robinson is a freakishly athletic 7-footer with a big wingspan and an impressive frame who plays quick off his feet with solid hands and touch. However, his on-court awareness and feel for the game are very underdeveloped. He left Western Kentucky after a handful of practices, and now his situation is in flux. Did NBA scouts see enough on the all-star circuit to draft him in the top 20?

• No. 33 - Svi Mykhailiuk, Atlanta

Quick take: The last time I looked (which was just a couple of days ago), DraftExpress had Svi as a late first-rounder, pencilled into the No. 29 spot. For all intents and purposes, when it comes to mock drafts, this is basically the same spot and it tells you that, with a strong season, Svi can solidify his standing as a first-round pick in next June's draft. Anything less than that and it's likely a second-round selection for the still-young Ukrainian.

Givony says: Nothing. They did not give commentary for the second round picks.

• No. 36 - Devonte' Graham, Orlando

Quick take: Graham is slotted in the same boat as Svi, just a couple of picks apart and in the position of knowing that a strong senior season could vault him comfortably into the first round. For both guys, it's not necessarily just about the numbers, it's about showing the NBA scouts what they want to see. Graham and Svi both gained valuable information this spring about their NBA stock and there's no doubt that each player has spent a good chunk of the summer and will spend much of the season trying to work on their areas of weakness and showcasing improvement. Neither player will do so at the expense of the team goals at Kansas, though, which should make KU fans happy and could go a long way toward helping these two showcase their skills without appearing to force it.

Givony says: Nothing. They did not give commentary for the second round picks.

Comments

Jonathan Allison 1 month, 1 week ago

No love for Dok and Vick in the 2018 draft. But maybe that's good. It will motivate them.

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