2022 NBA Mock Draft 2.0: New Names Enter the Top 30

Paolo Banchero
Paolo Banchero / Jamie Squire/GettyImages
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2022 NBA Mock Draft
Ochai Agbaji - Villanova v Kansas / Tom Pennington/GettyImages

player. . Kansas. . 13. . Ochai Agbaji. 125

With the 13th overall pick, I have the Atlanta Hawks selecting Kansas’ Ochai Agbaji. 

While I think the Hawks will be a bit disappointed to see Dyson Daniels get selected one spot before them, this pick could work out more in the team’s favor anyway. Ultimately, while there will be several younger players available with comparable or higher upside, I think Agbaji’s could be a perfect partner in crime for Trae Young.

Agbaji has undoubtedly been Kansas’ best player this season in terms of skill and production and has played particularly well in his latest two games in the NCAA Tournament. In his senior season with the Jayhawks, he’s averaging 18.9 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.6 assists and has by far played the best basketball of his career.

He’s grown into an elite shooter, hitting a career-high 41% of his threes this season on 6.6 attempts per game. He’s also grown far more confident as a ball-handler, has NBA length and athleticism, and is already a fantastic off-ball defender. It’s difficult to imagine what more he needs to do on the court to be considered a first-round draft prospect.

Some seem to believe that John Collins may be on his way out of Atlanta, but I highly doubt they give up on him just yet, nor do I think he’s the problem to begin with. The Hawks desperately need more defense and more help at the guard positions to take some of the load off Trae Young. If they can address those issues in the draft without compromising too much on upside, then I would not mind the Hawks drafting a bit more according to team fit.

While Agbaji is certainly older than many prospects toward the top of the draft board, his overall athleticism and two-way tools should give him quite a bit of staying power to warrant a lottery pick.