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Denver Stiffs 2020 NBA Draft Primer

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Will the Nuggets be lucky enough to select the next Michael Porter Jr. in the middle of the first round?

Denver Nuggets 2018 Draft Picks Press Conference Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

The 2020 NBA Draft is officially here.

After initially being scheduled in late June and interrupted due to COVID-19 along with the way of life in the United States, the NBA is getting back on track. The draft signifies the turning point from one season to another, and even though things won’t be going back to normal any time soon, this event will be a sign of relief for those involved. 2020 draft prospects have been in limbo for five extra months, front offices have been researching the same draft class for way too long, and coaching staffs will be eager to get new prospects to training camp as soon as possible.

Now, we finally get to see what many expect to be an incredibly turbulent event full of surprises before our very eyes.


Auburn v Georgia Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

The Essentials

Who: The NBA

What: 2020 NBA Draft

Where to watch: ESPN, and on Zoom for media!

When: 7:00pm ET, but we know the picks will probably start 30 minutes later

How many picks do the Nuggets have?

The Nuggets have one selection, the 22nd pick in the draft. Through trades prior to last season, it appeared that the Nuggets would have zero selections after sending their 2020 first round pick to the Oklahoma City Thunder to acquire Jerami Grant. At the 2020 trade deadline, the Nuggets made a surprise move by trading Malik Beasley, Juancho Hernangomez, and Jarred Vanderbilt to the Minnesota Timberwolves. They received Keita Bates-Diop, Noah Vonleh, Troy Daniels, and most importantly for tonight, a first round pick by way of the Houston Rockets.

The Nuggets do not have a second round draft pick, but don’t be surprised if they acquire one at some point prior to or during the draft.

Denver Stiffs NBA Draft Resources

  • Mock Draft done by Daniel Lewis on Tuesday night can be found here
  • Big Board done by Ryan Blackburn last week can be found here
  • All 20 NBA Draft prospect profiles done by Stiffs writers can be found here

Biggest questions for tonight

What will the Minnesota Timberwolves and Golden State Warriors do at the top?

The entire league is flummoxed right now. It has been a long time since the NBA has been this turbulent, and it starts with the two teams selecting at the top of the draft. The Minnesota Timberwolves are in an impossible situation. With Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell, the Wolves have needs to fill on the wing and at forward. The problem? None of the best prospects play those positions and are all underwhelming as star talents. LaMelo Ball is a ball dominant point guard who clashes with Russell. James Wiseman is an athletic 7’1” center who plays the same position as Towns. Anthony Edwards is the closest to a good positional fit at shooting guard, but the Wolves have drafted or traded for all three of Josh Okogie, Jarrett Culver, and Malik Beasley in the last two seasons.

In the Bay area, it’s no secret that the Warriors wanted to move this selection for a star player, but after receiving tepid interest around the league for players that fit “star” criteria, no one is really sure what the Warriors are going to do. They have championship aspirations with Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green all over 30, and a young rookie likely isn’t moving the needle for them this season. Do they trade the pick? Do they select someone young that could be helpful immediately like James Wiseman? It’s a curious situation.

How crazy do the trades get?

On Sunday, Chris Paul was traded to the Phoenix Suns for Kelly Oubre, Ricky Rubio, and other stuff the moment trades were allowed. On Monday, the Milwaukee Bucks acquired Jrue Holiday for Eric Bledsoe, George Hill, three first round picks, and two pick swaps in the alternating seasons. Robert Covington was traded to the Portland Trail Blazers as the Houston Rockets come apart at the seams in spectacular fashion.

League executives believe things could get really wild on draft night. After not having the ability to maneuver and change things up for nine months, the sense around the league is that general managers and team decision makers will go to major lengths to make changes that could shake up the league. There’s a chance that James Harden gets moved during the draft. There’s a chance starters that aren’t even in trade discussions are moved if the price is right.

We will cover it all at Denver Stiffs.

What will the Denver Nuggets do?

The ultimate question Nuggets fans are demanding the answer to is what the Nuggets plan to do now that Holiday is off the board as a trade candidate. Rumors circulated that the Nuggets were attempting to move into the top 10 of this draft to re-route a high draft pick in a Holiday trade, but that ship has sailed. It’s unlikely that the Nuggets will move up in this draft, given their team needs and the championship level of expectations heading into the 2020-21 season.

So, will the Nuggets select 22nd overall? If so, who?

Below is a video created by Denver Stiffs speculating on the fit of three prospects: Josh Green, Tyler Bey, and Desmond Bane. The Nuggets may select one of those players, or they may decide to go a different route. They may even look to add a second rounder in this draft. For more information on individual prospects, read the Denver Stiffs 2020 NBA Draft Big Board.

We hope you enjoy draft night!