2023 Mock Draft: Cavaliers trade in, Pelicans trade up in lottery

Victor Wembanyama, Metropolitans 92. Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images
Victor Wembanyama, Metropolitans 92. Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images /
1 of 8

The 2023 NBA Draft is nearly upon us. After months (years, truly) of evaluation, scouting, interviews, workouts and manipulating big boards, NBA teams will get the opportunity to make the selections that could change the course of their franchise this Thursday evening.

To get us ready, here is our first Mock Draft of the season, complete with the Cleveland Cavaliers trading into the lottery and the New Orleans Pelicans making a trade up in pursuit of Scoot Henderson. We begin, however, with the most unique prospect to ever enter the draft, courtesy of the San Antonio Spurs.

Center. San Antonio Spurs. Victor Wembanyama. 1. player. 29.

If Victor Wembanyama were entering the league simply as a 7’4″ big man, he would likely be in the conversation at the top of the NBA Draft. Players with that size don’t come around very often, and merely being that close to the rim gives them an inherent advantage. It’s when you factor in his ball-handling, shooting, finishing, standing reach and absolutely insane defensive ability as a paint protector; that’s how you get a legendary prospect.

When a player like Wembanyama enters the draft, fit is almost pointless to evaluate. The San Antonio Spurs will build their team around Wembanyama over the next few years. Still, he does fit in well with the players already in place. Devin Vassell looks like the perfect player to pair with Wembanyama as a 2-way wing, while Jeremy Sochan could make a devastating defensive Robin to Victor’s Batman.