The day is finally here. The day we’ve all been waiting for. The day that changes the future for 18-22 year old kids, as well as their respective NBA franchises that select them. The day where legends are made, and busts are forgotten. No more speculation. No more mock drafts. No more promises. No more rumors. Today’s the day. It’s NBA Draft day, baby.
Draft coverage begins tonight at 5:00 MST on ESPN. There’s plenty of reasons to tune in. First of all, what else are you going to be doing on a Thursday evening? With some big, big names and tons of pre-packed drama in this year’s draft prospects, it’s pretty much can’t-miss stuff. As of right now, the Jazz hold the 21st pick in the first round. So, what’s it gonna be? Do they trade up to get into a lottery pick and select a big name? Do they utilize Dennis Lindsey’s wizardry and stay at 21 with hopes of another well-scouted hidden talent? Do they trade with the Nuggets for their next franchise player? Sorry, that joke just isn’t even going to get old, I don’t care what you say. So much can happen in such little time in the NBA Draft, you just don’t ever know where everything is going to end up. Here’s what the experts are saying about the Jazz’s pick in the waining minutes before tonight’s NBA draft:
Utah Jazz – 21. Kevin Huerter
Maryland • Forward • Sophomore
Height: 6-7 • Weight: 190
There’s a lot to like about the smooth-shooting forward. He moves extremely well without the ball, is comfortable attacking on his own and has a sound 3-point stroke that should translate well to the NBA.
21. Utah Jazz: Aaron Holiday, PG. UCLA
21JAZZAaron Holiday | UCLA | Jr | PG
Holiday averaged 20.3 points and 5.8 assists in 37.7 minutes per game this season while shooting 42.9 percent from 3-point range for a UCLA team that made the NCAA Tournament. His 6-6 wingspan should prove beneficial while guarding opposing point guards. His ability to consistently make perimeter jumpers means he projects as a capable passer and shooter at the NBA level.
21 • Utah Jazz
G • UCLA • Age: 21.7
What Holiday lacks in size, he makes up for in length, athleticism, aggressiveness and toughness defensively. He excels in the open floor but also is a prolific 3-point shooter with deep range both with his feet set and off the dribble. Having grown up around the NBA, with two brothers (six and seven years older than him) on drastically different career paths, he has a good understanding of what it takes to make it. -GIVONY
The big guys seem to like Aaron Holiday and Kevin Huerter for the Jazz. Both seem like solid players that would fit well within the Jazz system. But you just don’t know. That’s what makes the draft so much fun. Last year, the future of the Utah Jazz franchise changed forever. What happens this year?
Rudy Gobert is confident that the Jazz will make the best choice and has hope that whoever they select will help bring a championship to Salt Lake City.
Rudy Gobert on Jazz’s upcoming draft picks: “I trust our front office and our staff to hopefully pick the best player for us in the short and long-term or if they do a move, make the best move in the short-term... It’s time for us to get it going and try to get a championship.” https://t.co/Fcryh531BF— Eric Woodyard (@E_Woodyard) June 21, 2018
Gail Miller discussed several Jazz hot topics on the Cox and Friends Podcast, a show hosted by Utah lieutenant governor Spencer Cox. She opened up on the Gordon Hayward exit, as well as her goals for the franchise.
Gail Miller on Gordon Hayward: “He never did call me. But I called him. Well, I didn’t call, I texted. We had some good words, and there’s no animosity.” https://t.co/L5Jaqz1Y2s— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) June 20, 2018
Gail Miller on @COXFriendsPod:— moni (@monilogue) June 20, 2018
"There's not a reason that we shouldn't have a championship. We've certainly given them all the tools. We just have to get the right players. And we will."
Gail Miller is a treasure. That’s all.
Donovan Mitchell has been everywhere this offseason. He’s been to Serbia to watch the EuroLeague Championship. He’s been to Greece, and several other places around the world with Adidas. Now? He’s in New York and will participate in hosting the NBA Draft.
Proud to announce I’m hosting the 2018 @NBA Draft Presented by @statefarm at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.— Christian Crosby (@ChristianCrosby) June 20, 2018
Joining me: @Dennis3DScott @NBATVRick @RADeMita @spidadmitchell pic.twitter.com/svYFnfQl7c
Mitchell also made some other big news yesterday, as it was announced that he had been nominated for an ESPY award. (!!!!!)
Donovan Mitchell has been nominated for an ESPY(!) pic.twitter.com/0HBsuBlNlf— Kyle Goon (@kylegoon) June 20, 2018
He and Ben Simmons will go head-to-head as NBA rookies*, while being joined by NFL rookie Alvin Kamara. As if the Simmons-Mitchell rivalry needed some more juice, here we go. Donovan Mitchell has a pretty good chance to win this award, in my opinion- which would be CRAZY.
Here’s a cool little reminder that the best duo in NBA history came from your very own Utah Jazz. I miss these dudes.
Greatest NBA duo of all-time? pic.twitter.com/nOIjc0sZhY— Whistle Sports (@WhistleSports) June 19, 2018