Orlando Magic Daily 2022 NBA Mock Draft 3.0: The final countdown

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Chet Holmgren, Gonzaga Bulldogs
PORTLAND, OREGON – MARCH 17: Chet Holmgren #34 of the Gonzaga Bulldogs dunks the ball against the Georgia State Panthers during the first half in the first round game of the 2022 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Moda Center on March 17, 2022 in Portland, Oregon. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

Orlando Magic Daily 2022 NBA Mock Draft 3.0

The Other Top Options

F/C. Oklahoma City Thunder. Chet Holmgren. 2. player. 149.

The Orlando Magic and Oklahoma City are certainly in a bit of a game of chicken. There is every public indication right now that they are targeting Chet Holmgren. And Holmgren seems pretty set on going to Oklahoma City.

Holmgren is one of the most divisive figures in this draft. People either believe in him or they do not at this point. But one thing everyone should agree on is that he is the biggest swing in this draft. And that is why he should be in consideration for the No. 1 pick.

If there is a chance at a truly generational, superstar talent, it is Holmgren.

There are just not any 7-footers who move the way he can move, shoot from the outside and defend the paint. He is the evolution of the unicorn revolution that Kristaps Porzingis promised to usher in.

Holmgren is brilliant off the dribble for a player his size. It is truly unique.

This may be where centers are going — a combination of Kristaps Porzingis’ versatility with Nikola Jokic’s playmaking. Holmgren is not quite there. But there is a new wave of unicorns coming through.

Holmgren is potentially that special. There is no denying this. But the questions still persist. Particularly about his size and weight to play the center position.

Whoever drafts him will be particularly invested in his growth and building the team that makes the most of what makes him special. While also hoping there are no setbacks in the process. It is a big swing.

Oklahoma City has long sought these rangy versatile players. It has become something of an open secret that Sam Presti covets Chet Holmgren. Maybe this is where Oklahoma City finally starts to take their step forward.

Houston Rockets. Paolo Banchero. 3. player. 169. . F

Paolo Banchero has quickly become the late riser in the NBA Draft. Who knew?

The betting markets suddenly started to like Banchero as his number went from a distant +1600 on Sunday to +900 Monday morning to +400 by Monday night. Somebody was putting a lot of money on Banchero to be the top pick.

In some respects, it makes sense. Banchero is perhaps the best scorer in this draft. Simply put, you can give him the ball on the block and he can get a basket. That is really valuable. And Banchero might be the favorite to be rookie of the year. He is going to put up numbers.

But ultimately, Banchero is not the pick because his game could be quite limiting. And he is going to force the team that drafts him to play a very specific style.

There is nothing wrong with that. If a team believes Banchero can be that top scorer to build an offense around, they should take him. But if that were the case universally than Banchero would be the runaway first pick.

Everything about the way the Orlando Magic are trying to build screams that Banchero is not the guy they want to build around.

They had one of the fewest isolation possessions per game in the league last year. They have spoken openly about playing a more motion-based, passing-based offense.

It is not that Banchero is not a good passer — he is a much better passer than he gets credit for — but that is not why you are drafting him.

Then you get to the Magic’s penchant and focus on building a defensive identity. Banchero is a better defender than he gets credit for, but he is not a good defender. And his lack of versatility on that end is likely the final nail in the coffin.

I am not a huge fan of his fit with the Houston Rockets. But they are enough of a blank slate that they can have two ball-dominant wings with Jalen Green to try and grow and develop them. It sure sounds like the Rockets have Banchero in their sights.