The Brooklyn Nets will have their highest NBA Draft pick in a decade later this month, with an interesting decision to make. At pick 19, the Nets can either make a selection to help them out immediately, or they could trade the pick. The Nets have been linked to trade rumors for months, so trading the pick is a realistic possibility.
If the Nets do decide to keep the pick, there are many prospects who can help them compete right now. Drafting a power forward would likely be the route the Brooklyn Nets decide to go, although there are different options.
Listed below are four players I believe the Nets should heavily target in the draft, mainly for one reason only; they need more wings and bigs who can stretch the floor. There is a wild card option I see the Nets potentially going as well…
Patrick Williams – Forward (Florida St.)
The 6’8 forward from Florida State could be the perfect NBA Draft option for the Brooklyn Nets.
Patrick Williams is expected to be a lottery pick and the Nets should not think twice about drafting him. He’s the perfect power forward option the Nets need, as he can bring shooting to the position and size. In 29 games at Florida State, Williams averaged 9.2 points, four rebounds, and one assist on 45.9% shooting (32% from three).
Williams would most likely be the safest power forward option the Nets could make as well, considering his floor is probably the highest. With a team with championship expectations, Williams is a player who could help them compete as soon as next season.
Saddiq Bey – Forward (Villanova)
The 6’8 sniper from Villanova is arguably the most underrated player in the NBA Draft.
A team looking for shooting, especially from the wing position won’t find a more safe pick than Saddiq Bey. In 67 games at Villanova, Bey averaged 11.9 points, 4.9 assists, and 1.8 rebounds on 46.9% shooting from the field (41.8% from three).
If the Nets are looking for another option to help them compete next season, Saddiq Bey could be that guy. Bey will be heavily coveted though, considering that he is expected to go into the lottery. There’s a chance he could drop though, and if he does, the Nets should definitely make a move for Bey.
Jalen Smith – Forward/Center (Maryland)
The 6’10 big man from Maryland could be a nice backup option at power forward in this NBA Draft.
Jalen Smith has shown signs of becoming a potential three-point threat, and he of course has the size the Nets need. In 64 games at Maryland, Smith averaged 13.5 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks, on 51.6% from the field (32.3% from three).
Smith isn’t believed to have as high of a floor as someone like Patrick Williams, but his ceiling could be higher. This can be attributed to Smith’s length, rebounding, and shot-blocking capabilities. If Smith were to be drafted by the Nets, he could be immediately implemented as power forward depth.
R.J. Hampton – Guard (International)
The 6’5 guard who played overseas in Australia last season would be a very interesting selection for the Brooklyn Nets.
R.J. Hampton has recently been heavily linked to the Nets, mainly due to his NBA Draft stock falling. Last year, Hampton was seen as a potential high-lottery pick in the draft, but a tough season overseas has led to him falling in many mock drafts. In one season overseas, Hampton averaged 8.8 points, 3.9 rebounds, 2.4 assists on 40.7% shooting (29.5% from three).
Hampton is also an extremely young player in this draft, as he won’t turn 20 years old until February. If the Nets want to basically “stash” a player for the future, Hampton could be that guy. His raw talent leads to many NBA Draft experts believing his ceiling is high, but his floor potentially being very low. Drafting Hampton would mean the Nets are still focusing heavily on the future, even as they are current Finals contenders.