The 2020 NBA Draft arrives on Wednesday, Nov. 18 and, before the big day, the Peachtree Hoops staff is collaborating on a set of roundtable topics. In the fifth and final installment, we discuss the prospects the Atlanta Hawks should be considering at No. 6 overall.
Brad Rowland: Realistically, it will be a shock if Anthony Edwards, LaMelo Ball or James Wiseman is still available at No. 6 overall. With that out of the way, the players I’d be considering as the Hawks would be Isaac Okoro, Devin Vassell, Onyeka Okongwu, Tyrese Haliburton and Deni Avdija. It seems safe to say that at least one of those prospects will be off the board by the time Atlanta is on the clock, but simply taking the best remaining player is my general approach. The gap in my own projection simply isn’t very big between these guys, even if that isn’t the sexiest answer. It all comes down to how Schlenk and the front office construct their board. For what it’s worth, Peachtree Hoops selected Isaac Okoro in SB Nation’s annual mock draft.
Wes Morton: If Deni Avdija is available, then I’d take him. He has shown a good bit of shooting improvement this year in addition to solid vision and feel for the game playing in Israel, which has raised his ceiling considerably. He projects to be a solid playmaker with guard-types of skills in a forward’s body. If Avdija is selected before the No. 6 pick, my next option would be Tyrese Haliburton. He’s slender and doesn’t pose a ton of resistance as an on ball defender, but he has strong shooting potential, is a disruptive defender away from the point of attack, and offers a high level of passing and playmaking as an off guard. He would successfully take some of the offensive load off Trae Young at the very least.
Glen Willis: Of the prospects that could be available when the Hawks are picking, Isaac Okoro is the upside player that excites me the most. If his offensive game works at all, he checks so many of the boxes on the list of things that need to be added in the form of wing depth on this team. Killian Hayes would be a nice addition to the guard mix as well, although they may feel that they could trade back a few spots and still get him. I’d have no problem with them using the pick on Onyeka Okongwu, so long as they feel that they can use a year or more to prioritize his development. Devin Vassell would also be a perfectly fine pick at No. 6, so long as they are okay not pursuing upside in what might be their last pick in the top half of the lottery in a while.
Graham Chapple: If Deni Avdjia should fall to No. 6, I think the Hawks should select him. Not only would he be the best player available at that spot, he’d be a great piece to plug in and could possibly contribute immediately because he can do a number of things well. I wouldn’t draft him for star potential but the good news is you don’t need star potential with him. Plus, you can’t have enough wings. The reason I don’t say someone like Hayes or another point guard is that I think it’s time the Hawks spend some of their cap for someone experienced at this position. If they’re serious about their playoff push, that position can’t be left as it was last year and a rookie I don’t think would be the way to go for next season.
Rashad Milligan: Barring a big fall from the big three, like Brad said, or a mini-fall from Deni Avdija, I’m focusing on hometown kids Devin Vassell, Isaac Okoro and the bonus option — Tyrese Haliburton.
Daniel Comer: It could be my bias for the European style of play, but I find myself gravitating toward Deni Avdija (he’s from Israel, but you get the point) and Killian Hayes. Avdija would represent a do-it-all, game-ready rookie whose basketball intelligence and versatility would open the playbook for a Hawks offense that’s been sometimes too reliant on Trae Young in isolation and the pick-and-roll. Avdija’s shooting is worrisome, however, so he may profile more as a high-end role player than a strong starter worthy of a top-10 pick. Hayes, on the other hand, has undoubtedly been influenced by James Harden and may not look like an ideal backcourt partner for Young, but his ability to shoot and create is tantalizing, especially with the Hawks likely looking to get Young in more catch-and-shoot situations next season. While a backcourt pairing of the two could be a defensive nightmare out of the gate, perhaps they’d create enough magic on the offensive side of the ball to compete for a playoff spot next season.
Ryan Kerley: The two guys I like the most at No. 6 are Isaac Okoro and Deni Avdija. Okoro is a guy the Hawks could develop offensively and can defend four position — five in small ball. Avdija could be an exciting offensive talent, but he needs a lot of development. If this pick was a little higher, I would say Anthony Edwards.
Zach Hood: Issac Okoro would be the pick for me if he’s available, barring Edwards or Ball somehow being there. Other considerations for Atlanta would be Devin Vassell, Onyeka Okongwu, Tyrese Maxey, and Deni Avdija.