The Portland Trail Blazers are busy fighting for a berth in the NBA Playoffs at the Disney World bubble, but the NBA Draft also looms on the horizon. In his latest mock draft, Bleacher Report’s Jonathan Wasserman has the Blazers selecting Vanderbilt sophomore Aaron Nesmith with the No. 14 pick:
A foot injury cut Nesmith’s season short, but his 52.2 percent three-point mark could be enough for the Blazers to buy his shooting. Solid 6’6” size and the ability to shot-make off movement makes it easier to believe his offense will translate, at least in a complementary role.
The forward posted averages of 23 points and 4.9 rebounds per game this season in 14 appearances for Vanderbilt before his foot injury.
The NBA’s pre-bubble standings had the Blazers with the No. 14 pick in the upcoming draft, but that pick could change if Portland makes the playoffs (they cannot fall lower than the 14th pick, however, as the draft lottery order will be based on team records from March 11). The league has a separate process to determine the draft order for Orlando playoff teams:
The draft order for teams outside the lottery will be determined by winning percentage after combining the regular-season records as of March 11 with the eight seeding games.
The NBA Draft Lottery will take place on Aug. 20, while the draft is scheduled for Oct. 16.