NBA MOCK DRAFT 4.0: Here's Where All 30 Teams Stand With Just Hours To Go Until The Draft

harrison barnes north carolina

Photo: AP

The 2012 NBA Draft is tonight at the Prudential centre in Newark, New Jersey.There has been a frenzy of trades and rumours in the last few days involving the Rockets, Bobcats, and even the Thunder.

We modified our mock draft one last time to give you the latest projections. Check back throughout the day for updates.

1. New Orleans Hornets — Anthony Davis (Kentucky)

There is absolutely no chance Anthony Davis is not taken at No. 1 by New Orleans, unless the Miami Heat call and offer up LeBron James.

2. Charlotte Bobcats — Thomas Robinson (Kansas)

The Charlotte Bobcats have a huge decision to make tonight, and there's really no telling what Charlotte does with the No. 2 pick.

ESPN's Chad Ford expects Charlotte to send the No. 2 pick to Cleveland for the No. 4 and 24 picks, whereas other experts believe the Bobcats could stay at No. 2 and take either Thomas Robinson, Bradley Beal, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist or Harrison Barnes.

The Rockets are also looking to move up, and have three picks between No. 12 and No. 18 to deal.

The Bobcats just acquired Ben Gordon in a trade with the Pistons, so the chances of Beal going at No. 2 to Charlotte have diminished somewhat.

The Bobcats need help immediately, though, so if Charlotte stays put at No. 2, Robinson looks to be the player who can have the earliest sizable impact on a team's fortunes.

3. Washington Wizards — Bradley Beal (Florida)

If Bradley Beal is available at No. 3 for Washington, there's a good chance the Wizards pull the trigger on a player who is touted as a more athletic version of Ray Allen.

He never put up huge numbers at Florida, but he was a victim to the Florida system -- playing out of position and having to share the ball with Erving Walker.

He won't be an All-Star as a rookie, but a Beal-John Wall back court could become one of the best in the Eastern Conference with time.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers — Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Kentucky)

Aside from Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is the surest bet in the draft. He proved at Kentucky that he's already a fantastic defender, and he's got the athleticism to keep up with NBA-level wing players.

Kidd-Gilchrist is not the offensive player that Harrison Barnes is and likely never will be, and it's a toss up as to who the Cavaliers will pick at No. 4 between the two. Kidd-Gilchrist has a much higher ceiling, so he's the pick.

5. Sacramento Kings — Harrison Barnes (UNC)

The Sacramento Kings have a lot of options with the No. 5 pick, but by picking Barnes the Kings would filling a big team hole by picking up some reliable outside shooting.

The Kings were 29th in the league in 3-point field goal percentage last season, and Barnes is one of the elite shooters in this draft.

The Kings could take Andre Drummond here as well, but after his former UConn teammate Jeremy Lamb joined the long list of people questioning Drummond's desire and work ethic, Sacramento might not want to take such a big risk.

6. Portland Trail Blazers — Austin Rivers (Duke)

Austin Rivers is an exciting scorer, though he isn't very efficient and will be punished by NBA defenses until he puts on some muscle.

The Blazers need a point guard, and Rivers would give Portland some versatility, as he would be able to play at both the point and off-guard positions.

He might not be the best pick here and could easily bust, but the Rivers to Portland rumours have been gaining some steam in the past few days -- and there's very little chance Rivers would be available for the Blazers to take at No. 11.

7. Golden State Warriors — Andre Drummond (UConn)

The Warriors are in an awkward spot in the draft, as they ideally want a player like Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, but he certainly won't be available at No. 7.

They could take a chance on Jeremy Lamb as a wing player, but if Drummond falls to No. 7, he's worth the (substantial) risk.

Though he could be a bust, some scouts are comparing him to Dwight Howard, and he'd have some protection in Golden State behind Andrew Bogut.

8. Toronto Raptors — Jeremy Lamb (UConn)

It's become clear that the Raptors are looking to draft a dynamic guard at No. 8, but Toronto doesn't know who will be available at No. 8.

Jeremy Lamb excelled as an off-guard at Connecticut in his freshman season, and his unique size and length make give him the potential to be a star in a few years.

The Raptors have also expressed interest in Dion Waiters, Damian Lillard, Austin Rivers and possibly even Kendall Marshall with this pick.

9. Detroit Pistons — John Henson (UNC)

John Henson is a bit of a risky pick given his slim build -- the kid came to college at 6-foot-11 and 183 pounds and his nickname is 'Gumby' -- but his defensive instincts and athleticism are unparalleled.

With Greg Monroe taking charge of the offensive production, Henson could be a perfect complement in Detroit, but some scouts have said they would rather take Henson's North Carolina teammate Tyler Zeller.

At the draft combine, Henson was measured with a wingspan of 7'5', and a standing reach of 9'3.5' -- three and a half inches higher than Anthony Davis.

10. New Orleans Hornets — Damian Lillard (Weber State)

It would be a dream draft for the New Orleans Hornets to pick up a point guard like Lillard to pair with Anthony Davis. If he's available at No. 10, expect him to be heading to New Orleans.

Lillard is a player with just one question mark about his game. He played for Weber State in the Big Sky Conference, meaning he accumulated great stats against sub-standard competition. But he's been lights out at the combine and in workouts.

11. Portland Trail Blazers — Meyers Leonard (Illinois)

Meyers Leonard is still raw as a centre having not played much for Illinois in college, but he's 7-foot-1 and has a lot of potential.

There doesn't seem to be a clear favourite in the battle between Leonard and Tyler Zeller for third-best centre prospect, so the Blazers could take Zeller here as well. Both have worked out for the team.

12. Houston Rockets — Perry Jones III (Baylor)

The Rockets are expected to make a blockbuster trade to move up to the early lottery in a power play for Dwight Howard, so the No. 12 pick might not be headed to Houston come draft time.

If a deal cannot be struck, though, Jones makes sense for a Houston team looking to stock up on talented big men.

Perry Jones is a great athlete and had solid all-around numbers at Baylor, but teams have been questioning his passion for basketball and toughness.

UPDATE: ESPN is reporting Jones has been medically red flagged by some doctors over a possible knee issue, which could send him sliding down the board.

13. Phoenix Suns — Dion Waiters (Syracuse)

There's a good chance Waiters could be off the board by the time Phoenix selects, but he might be the team's No. 1 target.

Waiters definitely has a draft promise after leaving the draft combine upon instructions by his agent, but it's unknown whether the promise came from the Suns at No. 13, or other teams in need of a scoring guard like Portland, New Orleans or Toronto.

14. Milwaukee Bucks — Tyler Zeller (UNC)

The Bucks recently acquired centre Samuel Dalembert in a trade with Houston, but he can't be considered a long-term solution under the basket.

Zeller was a highly polished performer at North Carolina, and he can make an immediate impact in the NBA as a scoring centre.

Here's what one anonymous NBA scout told Sports Illustrated's Seth Davis about Zeller:

'Beast. I personally have him in the top seven. He's a 13- to 14-year NBA centre.

15. Philadelphia 76ers — Terrence Jones (Kentucky)

Philadelphia is looking to go big at No. 15, and Terrence Jones or Arnett Moultrie are likely possibilities for Philadelphia.

Terrence Jones could play at either small forward or power forward in the NBA, and Philadelphia covets athletic big men. Jones is the better choice over Moultrie.

16. Houston Rockets — Terrence Ross (Washington)

Houston may not keep the No. 16 pick, but Terrence Ross is a steal this late.

Ross is coveted as a pure shooter -- perhaps the best in the draft -- and could even go as a lottery pick. He's a target of just about any team outside the top-10, and has the potential to be a gifted scorer in a few years.

17. Dallas Mavericks — Arnett Moultrie (Mississippi State)

It would be smart for the Mavericks to take a player like Kendall Marshall at No. 17, but Mark Cuban may be banking on welcoming Deron Williams to Dallas soon.

Arnett Moultrie didn't get much national attention playing in the SEC at Mississippi State, but he's one of the country's elite rebounders and his stock has been rising steadily the past few weeks.

18. Houston Rockets — Royce White (Iowa State)

Again, Houston may not have this pick by tonight, but the mysterious White -- who has compared himself with John Lennon -- has quickly become a hot commodity.

White is a total package that can score, rebound and play defence. The Celtics have stated he's going to Boston if available at No. 21, but White should already be off the board.

19. Orlando Magic — Moe Harkless (St. John's)

Harkless is a smooth scorer from St. John's, but he also pulled down 8.6 rebounds a game last season in the Big East.

In Orlando, Harkless would have time to learn from veteran Hedo Turkoglu before rotating into a starting role.

This pick could change drastically if the Magic strike a deal to ship out Dwight Howard.

20. Denver Nuggets — Andrew Nicholson (St. Bonaventure)

Not a lot of people got to see Andrew Nicholson play at St. Bonaventure, but he was a force of nature. He could easily be the steal of the draft and a future All-Star.

Nicholson showcased his offensive game at the combine, wowing scouts with his deadly jump shot.

Denver needs a point guard, but Nicholson is the best player left on the board.

21. Boston Celtics — Jared Sullinger (Ohio State)

Sullinger was a top-10 pick until NBA team doctors revealed his back could shorten his basketball career.

Taking a chance on Sullinger is more than worth it this late in the draft, and you can't argue with the impressive numbers Sullinger put up at Ohio State.

22. Boston Celtics — Fab Melo (Syracuse)

You can't teach height, and Melo is one of few seven-footers in the draft.

He's not great on the offensive end, and Melo will need a season or two before he can become a scoring threat in the post. In Boston, he wouldn't be under immediate pressure to perform, especially if the Celtics go big at No. 21.

If Terrence Ross is somehow still available this late, he would be a dream pick for Boston to replace Ray Allen, who seems destined for Miami.

23. Atlanta Hawks — Kendall Marshall (UNC)

Kendall Marshall is a pure passer with extraordinary court vision, but questions about his athletic ability have cooled his draft stock.

He's not a great athlete or scorer, but Marshall is hands down the best distributor in the draft.

If he's available for a team in need of guard depth like Atlanta, he should be the pick. I wouldn't be surprised to see Brooklyn trade up to take Marshall if he falls to the late first round, as a contingency plan in case Deron Williams departs.

24. Cleveland Cavaliers — Jeff Taylor (Vanderbilt)

The Cavaliers got their wing of the future in Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, and now they could get an Anthony Parker replacement in Jeff Taylor at No. 24. Parker just announced his retirement today.

This pick could be going to Charlotte, however, if the Cavaliers decide to move up to No. 2.

25. Memphis Grizzlies — Tony Wroten (Washington)

Wroten is a hyper-athletic guard from Washington with great speed and size at 6'6'.

He isn't a scoring guard, but would be an able backup to Mike Conley in Memphis, and he'd be on a team where his offensive shortcomings would be masked.

26. Indiana Pacers — Evan Fournier (France)

Evan Fournier is a 19-year-old shooting guard from France that -- at 6'7' -- has enviable size at the position.

He's a proven scorer in France, and though NBA teams seem to be wary of drafting international talent, his versatility makes Fournier a valuable long-term prospect.

27. Miami Heat — Festus Ezeli (Vanderbilt)

Ezeli had never played organised basketball until he got to Vanderbilt, so it's safe to say the big man hasn't reached his potential yet.

The Heat desperately need bulk at the centre position, and Ezeli may be the best big man left late in the first round.

Here's what an anonymous NBA scout had to say about Ezeli:

'I've watched that guy a lot. I don't know what he's doing sometimes, but he's got a great body. He's a big, big man. Thick and strong, and he uses his size. If you're picking at number 26, and you're looking for a big backup centre, he's a good pick.'

28. Oklahoma City Thunder — Draymond Green (Michigan State)

Draymond Green is the ultimate team player and a leader on the court. He doesn't pass the eye test as a potential breakout player, but he can help almost any team in the league.

29. Chicago Bulls — Marquis Teague (Kentucky)

With the long-term status of Derrick Rose unknown, the Bulls need some insurance at point guard.

Getting a player like Marquis Teague, who won a national championship just a few months ago, would be a steal this late in the round.

If Teague has stayed at Kentucky another year, some scouts project he would have been a lottery pick in 2013.

30. Golden State Warriors — Will Barton (Memphis)

Barton's name has just recently been popping up as a potential first round pick, and he'd be a valuable and versatile guard to come off the bench for Golden State.

He was the Conference USA Player of the Year, and averaged 8.0 rebounds per game as a shooting guard.

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