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Blazer’s Edge 2020 NBA Draft Manifesto

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Steve Dewald delivers the details on the upcoming coverage of the 2020 NBA Draft that will be featured at Blazer’s Edge.

NBL Rd 9 - New Zealand v Illawarra Photo by Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images

The Trail Blazers are set to enter the 2020 NBA Draft with two draft picks at their disposal. This year’s draft is set to unfold on November 18, but as we all know, that schedule could easily change. Even with that in mind, our Blazer’s Edge NBA Draft team is set to unveil the largest scope of draft profiles in the history of our site.

This year’s focus will hit on two groups of prospects and don’t be surprised if it covers a few players outside of that group. Before we get into philosophy, here is what we know heading into the 2020 NBA Draft.

  • The Blazers currently own the No. 16 and No. 46 picks in the NBA Draft.
  • President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey has shown through the selections of Anfernee Simons and Gary Trent Jr. that he favors upside over positional need.
  • The Blazers have shown a willingness to move up in the draft process by packaging multiple assets. Outside of moving up, they have also maneuvered back into the second round when the opportunity arises.
  • Following the trade that sent Arron Afflalo to Portland, the Blazers have been reluctant to move picks for veterans.

The Prospect Pool

If the selections of Zach Collins and Nassir Little have taught us anything, it is that almost any prospect is within the Blazers’ grasp. This year’s process should be even more volatile. Outside of a small pool players at the top of most draft boards, the rest of the first-round projections are largely undefined.

To be clear, undefined does not mean that there is a lack of talent. Instead, it will come down to the decisions made by organizations from across the league. In this respect, the Blazers should feel comfortable with Olshey at the helm in a high-variance draft pool. For those reasons, you might see us do a profile on a prospect that is firmly slotted in the top eight of most mock drafts and big boards. Remember, Little slipped all the way to pick No. 25.

Unlike last year, our draft profile series will feature prospects that fall in the range of pick No. 16 and pick No. 46. That clarification will be made early and often in each profile.

Trades

Death, taxes and someone in the comments explaining how this is stupid and the Blazers should trade the pick. That is a discussion that I am sure will occur in posts outside of our draft profile series. We see you, but our draft analysis is focused on the players that could be available when Portland lands on the clock.

Our Process

Our 2020 profiles will follow the same outline as last year, for the most part. Each profile will include:

  • Player vitals (height, weight, etc)
  • Player stats (this will include per 36 when applicable)
  • Prospect strengths
  • Prospect weaknesses
  • Overview of the previous season
  • Overall assessment
  • Fit with the Blazers

What you will not see: direct player comparisons. You might see us define a prospect by using existing archetypes (3-and-D wing, shoot-first point guard, etc) or one aspect of that player’s game compared to an existing player, but you will not see our profiles feature straight-across comparisons to current players. Those comparisons are often tired and racially problematic in certain instances.

Coming Soon

Our draft profile series will kick off this week. We want to thank you all in advance. Our community is the foundation for our draft coverage. Without you, this would not be possible.

Along with our typical draft profile coverage, Steve Dewald is starting a draft-specific Mailbag. Please send your draft topics/questions to Steve at BEdgeSteve@gmail.com.