It's easy to become overwhelmed with disappointment after what we saw last night. After 5 plus years of a failed rebuild, multiple failed coaches, and a GM that left us little to be excited about, last night was an opportunity to shift hope in the right direction.
While certainly you'd like to have your pick of the litter, we've been saying it for months, this year's draft is so plentiful with potential top talent. Truthfully, the difference between #1 and #6 is not that great. After the Celtics, Lakers, Sixers, Suns, and Kings pick, the Magic get the next best guy. Based on the minutes and minutes of research I've done scouring the web for the latest mock drafts, and talking to some college basketball gurus I know and trust, I've determined the 3 players the Magic are most likely to end up with @ pick 6. Here's the really encouraging part, you could make a case that each of these guys should be top 3 picks.
The consensus picks in the top 4:
Many believed the list would be - Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball, Josh Jackson, and Jayson Tatum. But this is not the consensus that I've found. See, the point guard position has become so coveted in today's NBA, it's like big men in the 90's, or QB's coming out of college, they're always going to get pushed up a couple picks because of their position alone. With that said, the pseudo data I've found backs that up, the consensus top 4 I've found has Fultz, Ball, Jackson, and De'Aron Fox - speedy PG out of Kentucky inside the top 4.
That would leave us with the Kings making a selection @ 5 as the only team left standing in front of the Magic's first selection. This will leave one of three players on the board for the Magic to pick:
Dennis Smith Jr., PG, NC State - He can do it all, he'd be a great pick here for the Magic, and they certainly need help solidifying the PG position. Sorry Elfrid. I believe the only reason Smith slips behind those first three point guards in the draft is simply due to a lower ceiling of potential, but he could still be very good in the NBA. Plus, his dad isn't a Looney Tunes character. See; Lavar Ball.
Malik Monk, G, Kentucky - He might be the most dynamic offensive player in this draft. If you don't believe me, go watch his 47 point performance vs the Tar Heels this season. He has the explosiveness and outside shooting ability that teams covet (and the Magic don't have) in today's NBA.
Jayson Tatum, F, Duke - You could make a case that this is the most talented player in the draft. His offensive game is very refined for a kid his age, he can dish, he can rebound. Tatum is today's NBA stretch 4, but on the Magic could play the 3 with ease and probably be their best player instantly.