A Year In Review: 2017 NBA Draft
It has been a year since the debut of the NBA meme himself known as Lavar Ball, a year of confusion in the form of Markelle Fultz bizarre change in shooting form, and the rise of stars in the form of Mitchell and Tatum. Let's examine the winners and losers from the draft now that one year has passed and see if we can predict how these players will play a few more years down the road.
The league was very fortunate to add some key contributors this year, as many of the rookies were able to impress their respective teams and become part of their team's core for the future. We saw the rise of Donovan Mitchell who has become a star already and looks to be a future All-Star after drawing comparisons to Dwyane Wade. Jayson Tatum exploded in the playoffs and showed his versatile scoring ability against Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. We also had the up and down season of Lonzo Ball. His team did not make the playoffs as Lavar once promised but he did improve a lot this season and has shown why he was the best passer in the draft. He makes players better and this was shown with Kyle Kuzma. Kuzma was another steal of the draft, taken 17th overall by the Lakers, he showed his scoring ability and will look to be part of the Lakers young core with Ingram and Ball.
There are some honorable mentions of losers and winners that are not mentioned in this article such as Hasan Whiteside. The Heat's were able to grab Bam Adebayo with their first-round selection last year and he has been very impressive and has taken away a large chunk of Whiteside's minutes. As of today, Whiteside appears to be on the trading block, as the Heat are prepared to move on with Bam as their starting center. An honorable mention winner is the Dallas Mavericks who were able to take Dennis Smith Jr. with the 9th pick in the draft. He was the fourth point guard taken off the board, and he was very impactful his first year and looks to be the centerpiece for this Mavericks team.