When you think of the NBA returning, the draft isn’t the first thing that comes to mind, but hopefully, it’s up there.
The 2020 NBA draft is coming around the corner, and it surprisingly is still scheduled to take place on June 25th at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Whether or not it happens then, it’s never too early to think about players the Miami Heat should take a glance at, and players that just won’t fit their playing style.
As of right now, the Heat are expected to have their first-round pick in the early ’20s. That obviously can fluctuate here and there depending on what happens before then. A “superstar” likely won’t be headed their way, but a very capable role player should be.
Here is a little guide for Heat lovers to look into for their first-round pick, and guys to stay away from:
Eyes on - Tre Jones, Guard, Duke:
Tre Jones certainly has the potential to thrive at the NBA level. He played two seasons at arguably the best program in college, Duke. Last season, he averaged 16.2 points per game, 6.4 assists, and 4.2 rebounds, while playing howling defense. He was the “glue” for the team. In addition, he took home two phenomenal awards. First, he was voted 2020 ACC Player of the Year and secondly, Defensive Player of the Year. Judge for yourself, but that’s not too bad in my book. He needed to become a very good distributor and extremely tough on defense and filled both those roles excellently.
A big question for the offseason with the Heat is what’s the status for Goran Dragic? He could be on the move as a free agent, but also staying put is an option. Either way, Jones will be filled with additional blooming studs. Kendrick Nunn, Duncan Robinson, Tyler Herro, and Bam Adebayo were stellar in college and followed the same path into the NBA.
The bottom line is that Jones will give the Heat the ability to work with more players, and potentially have a large impact if Dragic leaves. Nevertheless, if Miami is thinking about Giannis Antetokounmpo, it gives them a stronger chance to land the star.
TRE JONES. UNBELIEVABLE.— ESPN (@espn) February 9, 2020
OVERTIME IN CHAPEL HILL ON ESPN pic.twitter.com/MEs38kKL5m
Lay Off - Jahmi’us Ramsey, Guard, Texas Tech:
The high flying and dangerous Ramsey has the potential to be very effective in the NBA, but I just don’t think he should be wearing a Heat jersey. The highly-touted four-star prospect coming out of high school didn’t disappoint at Texas Tech. He averaged 15 points per game while shooting 42.6% from three-point land. But, there are flaws in his game that should be addressed.
First of all, he can’t create and make a shot for himself. He has solid ball-handling skills, but it certainly isn’t up to par for an NBA level. Being 6’4, Ramsey doesn’t have the vision and feel to truly be a point guard, but then he would be an undersized two. In addition, he showed flashes of selfish plays, which certainly won’t fair well with Coach Spoelstra.
Onto where he would fit on the roster. The Heat have several adequate shooting guards. Robinson, Herro, and Nunn all averaged over nine points per game before the NBA suspended their season. Being honest, there isn’t a need at all for another SG.
I’m hoping Andy Elisburg won’t take Ramsey with the first-round pick. The benefit of drafting him is not worth it.
Eyes on - Nico Mannion, Guard, Arizona:
Yes, he can be a bit of a wild card at times, but I do think the reward would be ample if Mannion ended in Miami. Look, we’ve already established wonderful alliteration. But on a serious note, this would be very exciting.
First, Mannion has a motor that doesn’t shut off. He can go up and down the court for an eternity without losing intensity and focus. His IQ of the game is superb. At Arizona, he displayed he could run an offense at a high level while helping them to a strong record along the way. He averaged 14 points per game, 5.3 assists, and 32.7% from threes. In addition, he is versatile on offense. Whether it’s driving and kicking to an open teammate, getting to the rim and finishing, or even hitting from mid-range or beyond, he can get it done. One concern is consistency, but over time he should be able to work on that.
Again, the speculation of Dragic leaving once he hits the free-agent market is substantial. Only time will tell what the outcome is, but regardless Nico would be a great fit for the franchise. He has a lot more potential than people think, and hopefully, the Heat see that in him.
Lay off - Patrick Williams, Forward, Florida State:
Williams isn’t as known at a national level yet. He spent one season with the Seminoles averaging 9.4 points per game, four rebounds, and one assist, which is a modest state line. But, the 6’8 forward defiantly brings assets to his game. His build is big and strong, and he surprisingly shoots the deep-ball at a high percentage. However, his game needs improvement in a couple of parts.
At times, he is content and will let the game come to him. Williams isn’t the type of player who puts his nose down and is willing to do anything for the W. Also, he doesn’t have a great feel of how to make himself open and will settle for a contested low-percentage shot. He also hasn’t shown that he has creativity at finishing near the basket, unlike other bigs in the NBA.
The forward position for the Heat isn’t that deep, but it’s also not a weak spot. The breakout of Bam has been incredible to witness and who wants to take his glory? Kelly Olynyk can also get the job done. The bottom line is if Adebayo keeps playing lights out, the Heat don’t want to spend an essential first-round draft pick on Williams.
The main question is: If you were the GM for the Heat, who would you be taking in the first round and why? Let’s hear it!