Virtually every (rational) scenario for the Atlanta Hawks in the 2017 NBA Draft has been exhausted at this point but speculation continues. With that as the backdrop, Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com presents a mock draft that isn’t exactly following conventional wisdom.
At No. 19 overall, Howard-Cooper links Terrance Ferguson to the Hawks.
He gambled big by turning pro in Adelaide, Australia, rather than spending a freshman season at the University of Arizona with much better competition and playing for a coach, Sean Miller, with a record of developing NBA prospects. Ferguson counters that a season against adults and living on his own made him more ready for the leap to the NBA.
He is essentially a spot-up shooter without much ability to handle or create an opening, but the Hawks need 3-point threats and, generally, anyone who can make baskets. “That kid is going to be the surprise of the Draft,” one executive said. “He’s an outstanding shooter.”
Ferguson is certainly a “boom or bust” prospect in that he is thoroughly unproven. As noted above, he elected to jump to Australia instead of spending one year in college and Ferguson’s production abroad was not fantastic.
With that said, he has a smooth stroke and could become an intriguing 3-and-D option in the future. Ferguson is wildly athletic and, if he could add to his skill set, the Hawks could be unearthing a diamond in the rough.
It also should be noted that the same mock draft brings Colorado guard Derrick White to Atlanta at No. 31 overall and, in some circles, White is a better prospect than Ferguson at this point. Only time will tell but this is some interesting food for thought.