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2022 NBA Draft grades: Pick-by-pick analysis of all 58 selections in night where the surprises started from the number 1

Did the Magic make the right choice? Did the Pistons change their franchise in a big way? What will happen with the Knicks’ free agency ambitions?

We can’t answer those questions tonight, but CBS Sports NBA Draft sportsguy Kevin McCarthy is here to grade the values that teams extract from their picks as the night goes on.

2022 NBA Draft First Round

Grades by Kevin McCarthy

1. Orlando Magic: PF Paolo Banchero, Duke

Even though I would have taken Chet Holmgren, I can’t say it’s wrong to take Banchero. I think he’s going to be the most impactful player right from the jump and the favorite to win Rookie of the Year. This is sensible, if surprising. He’s a big, strong and skilled forward who could be an incredible building block in Orlando. Grade: A

2. Oklahoma City Thunder: C Chet Holmgren, Gonzaga

The concerns about Holmgren’s slight frame are legitimate — but he’s such a unique prospect with incredible potential that he’s the right pick here. This 7-foot rim-protector who can also bounce it like a guard and reliably make 3-pointers. He has the highest ceiling in this draft and, for that reason, should go no lower than here. Grade: A+

3. Houston Rockets: PF Jabari Smith, Auburn

For much of the draft process, Smith was assumed to be the No. 1 overall pick. And in a class with three high-level big men prospects, Smith became an easy pick when he slipped to third overall. Smith still needs to develop in lots of ways but is already a great shooter and switchable defender who plays with undeniable energy and fits nicely with Jalen GreenGrade: A+

4. Sacramento Kings: PF Keegan Murray, Iowa

I like Murray, but it’s not what I would have done. I would have taken Jaden Ivey. But he made it crystal clear he didn’t want to be there. I don’t think that is enough to explain not taking him, but I do understand where the Kings were going with this move. Murray was a tremendous player this season — the second-best college basketball player in the country. Grade: B

5. Detroit Pistons: SG Jaden Ivey, Purdue

Ivey is an explosive athlete who plays big and is capable of attacking the rim in a variety of ways. Comparisons to Ja Morant don’t really add up for Ivey, but he’s an outstanding player nonetheless. There are questions about whether he’s actually going to be a point guard in the NBA, but now he’s paired with Cade Cunningham, a natural distributor.  Grade: A+

6. Indiana Pacers: SG Bennedict Mathurin, Arizona

More than any other projected lottery pick, Mathurin is the one whose stock I raised the most after evaluating him compared to what I thought during the season. You dive in, and what is not to like? He’s a 6-6 athletic wing who can do a lot of things and has All-Star potential. Grade: A

7. Portland Trail Blazers: SG Shaedon Sharpe, Kentucky

This pick is interesting because it seems with the Jerami Grant trade that the Blazers are trying to get good now. And Sharpe is an interesting fit from that perspective. But few players in this class have higher ceilings than him. He’s an explosive scorer with ridiculous size for the wing and athleticism, and he could one day be a plus defender with those tools. He’s just likely not ready to do that right away after not playing last season at Kentucky. Grade: B+

8. New Orleans Pelicans (from Lakers): SG Dyson Daniels, G League

Daniels isn’t quite the prospect previous Ignite stars have been but is still a fascinating guard with size who can play with or without the ball. His jumper, at this point, is the biggest area of concern, but if the Pelicans can get that falling, he has a high ceiling. And this Pelicans team is very close to being a legitimate contender — though a lot of that falls on Zion Williamson. Daniels fits really nicely into that core as arguably the best perimeter defender in this draft. Grade: A+

9. San Antonio Spurs: SF Jeremy Sochan, Baylor

Sochan is the rare sub-100 high school recruit who becomes a one-and-done top-20 pick. His ability to guard multiple positions, and his potential as a shooter, are among the reasons he’s a tantalizing prospect and one of the most versatile players available in this draft. The fact that the Spurs are taking him says a lot; it might not be what I would have done, but that may simply mean I am wrong. Grade: A-

10. Washington Wizards: SF Johnny Davis, Wisconsin

Davis went from a mostly anonymous power-conference player to a candidate for national player of the year in his sophomore season at Wisconsin. I don’t worry about his slip at the end of the season, and I think Bradley Beal can look at this as a guy who helps you win right away. Grade: A-

11. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Knicks): SF Ousmane Dieng, France

Dieng is a long-term investment, and he’s not ready to help you next season. For the Knicks, that probably was not right, so they traded the pick. But for the Thunder, that probably makes sense. He’s a long and skilled prospect who fits the Thunder’s window and is the type of player they’re building around. Grade: A-

12. Oklahoma City Thunder (from Clippers): SF Jalen Williams, Santa Clara

Williams probably helped himself more in the pre-draft process than any other prospect available, in large part because he wasn’t spotlighted as a Santa Clara player. But when you watch the film, it’s all there. He’s got good size, he really shoots it, he’s athletic enough. Grade: B+

13. Detroit Pistons (from Hornets via Knicks) : C Jalen Duren, Memphis

Surprising that the Hornets, who need a center, traded this pick to the Knicks and then the Pistons, but what a move for them to join Ivey and their young core. Duren isn’t the type of floor-spacing big franchises prefer these days, but he’s such a physical specimen and great athlete that there’s probably a place for him in the modern NBA anyway. He’d have been a top five pick 20 years ago, and he’s got great upside to be successful in rim-attacking offense and interior defense. Grade: A+

14. Cleveland Cavaliers: SF Ochai Agbaji, Kansas

I love what Cleveland is doing. They have stockpiled it with interesting young pieces who can really play now. Agbaji can switch and guard different guys after being the best player on the best team in the country. I think he’s going to be one of the 10 best players in the draft. And no, he’s not a finished product. Grade: A+

15. Charlotte Hornets (via Pelicans): C Mark Williams, Duke

Charlotte needed to come out of this draft with a big man, and they may look back and regret that they didn’t stick with Duren. But while Williams is not as high on my board as Duren was, he really can defend and this is the exact spot I had him mocked all along. He’s huge and controls the paint on defense. There’s still a place in the league for these types of guys. Grade: A+

16. Atlanta Hawks: SF AJ Griffin, Duke

It took Griffin a little while to get comfortable at Duke because of a preseason knee injury that seemed to affect his athleticism. But the five-star high school recruit, who is the son of NBA assistant coach Adrian Griffin, eventually showed glimpses of why he’s a lottery talent — taken two spots after the lottery. He might be the best shooter in the draft and now gets to play with an elite passer in Trae Young. Grade: A+

17. Houston Rockets (via Nets): PF Tari Eason, LSU

Eason was a breakout star at LSU after transferring following a so-so first season at Cincinnati. He’s a versatile frontcourt option who can guard multiple positions and punish defenses in transition opportunities. With the Rockets he can play with fellow SEC standout Jabari Smith as a defensive frontcourt. My only reservation is I think there were more talented players available here for a team that is looking to get back to respectability. Grade: B

18. Chicago Bulls: SF Dalen Terry, Arizona

There’s a lot of stuff I like about Terry. He’s versatile, doesn’t get rattled by much and has great confidence. But this seems a bit higher than most people had him. I like that he believes in himself. Grade: B

19. Memphis Grizzlies (from Timberwolves): PF Jake LaRavia, Wake Forest

The confusing thing here to me is the trade, where Memphis traded 22 and 29 for 19. But this is what the Grizzlies’ front office have done: They find their guy and trade up to make sure they get him. I have LaRavia closer to 30 than 20, but the Grizzlies’ draft history has earned credibility with picks like Brandon Clarke and Desmond Bane. Grade: B

20. San Antonio Spurs (from Raptors): SF Malaki Branham, Ohio State

He was the best available guy on my board because he’s a wing with size who can genuinely create at a high level. He was taking over games by the end of the season. He’s got offense for days and was a top 16 prospect. That kind of expectation-exceeding season is super impressive and he could be a steal for a team that often finds them. Grade: A+

21. Denver Nuggets: SF Christian Braun, Kansas

Braun (pronounced “Brown” for some reason) is a wing with size who can guard his position, reliably make jumpers and finish in transition. He’s the type of prospect who could flourish with a Nuggets team that has so many pieces already in place for the future. They need more on the wings, and Braun should be able to contribute early. There were higher-graded prospects available, but this is a strong pick. Grade: A-

22. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Jazz via Grizzlies): C Walker Kessler, Auburn

Kessler was arguably the best defensive player in college basketball this past season while averaging 4.6 blocks per game for an Auburn team that spent part of the season ranked No. 1. He’s an incredible rim-protector with the potential to also develop into a comfortable perimeter shooter. Grade: A+

23. Memphis Grizzlies (from 76ers): SG David Roddy, Colorado State

Getting this pick cost the Grizzlies De’Anthony Melton, but he appeared to be losing favor with the coaching staff. Most people didn’t have a first-round grade on Roddy because he has an unusual body for an NBA wing player. But this is what the Grizzlies do, as I said in the LaRavia grade: They traded up to get their guy, even though he was a more experienced college player than many teams want. Grade: B

24. Milwaukee Bucks: SF MarJon Beauchamp, G League

There are quite a few guys on my board who are above him, but that doesn’t mean this is a bad pick. He plays extremely hard, and with his athleticism and size, that could make him a real positive factor. He’s going to need to figure out his jumper, but his ceiling is there. Grade: B

25. San Antonio Spurs (from Celtics): SG Blake Wesley, Notre Dame

Wesley wasn’t a consistent player for the Irish, but he flashes a lot of the things that shooting guards need in today’s NBA. The only guy available higher on my big board is TyTy Washington, but Wesley has the athleticism and skills to turn into something with a great coaching staff. Grade: A-

26. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Mavericks via Rockets): SF Wendell Moore, Duke

Moore proved a lot to me in his last year at Duke. He got significantly better. A recurring theme tonight is that 6-5 guys who can make shots are valuable. He can guard multiple positions, play multiple roles and offer good effort every night. Grade: B

27. Miami Heat: SF Nikola Jovic, Serbia 

Jovic has a ton of skill to go along with size. The shooting percentages aren’t great, but don’t let that fool you. He’s young, and he might need a little while to be impactful for a franchise like Miami. He’ll need to work on his body, but he can dribble, pass and shoot. Grade: B

28. Golden State Warriors: PF Patrick Baldwin Jr., Milwaukee

I like this for Golden State specifically. Who are they taking this late that is going to help them immediately? Probably nobody. So they take the big swing! Baldwin would have been a top-10 pick if we’d done this draft a year ago. Great size, beautiful shot and a worthwhile risk. Grade: A

29. Houston Rockets (from Grizzlies via Timberwolves): PG TyTy Washington Jr., Kentucky

The best prospect available finally comes off. Washington proved he can play point guard and off the ball, which makes him incredibly versatile. This is three SEC players at different positions for the Rockets, and they complement each other nicely. Grade: A+

30. Denver Nuggets (from Suns via Thunder): SF Peyton Watson, UCLA

Watson didn’t play much at UCLA, and some of that was on him, but he went to a team that returned basically every meaningful piece from a Final Four run. But if you’re a believer in what you saw before UCLA — if you believe in the highlight reel — then you’re getting a top 10-15 player in his class at the bottom of the first round. Grade: B-

2022 NBA Draft Second Round

Grades by Kyle Boone

31. Indiana Pacers (from Rockets via Cavaliers): PG Andrew Nembhard, Gonzaga

Nembhard has good positional size and is a reliable shooter and distributor who can play both on and off the ball, making him a safe selection. His lack of explosiveness and ability to separate may keep him from taking over as a starting caliber player, but his production could help him stick as a depth piece on a Pacers team that needs more PG talent in the pipeline. Grade: B

32. Orlando Magic: SG Caleb Houstan, Michigan

Orlando gets a quality addition with has a five-star pedigree, great positional size and high-ceiling shooting range. He had some inconsistencies during his short stint in college but could be a nice piece of depth to add to an exciting young core that includes Banchero, Franz Wagner and Jalen Suggs. I had him No. 32 in my rankings and he went No. 32. Grade: A

33. Toronto Raptors (from Pistons via Spurs, Wizards and Bulls): C Christian Koloko, Arizona

This is a draft short on true center prospects and Koloko’s a very talented rim-protector who earned Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year honors last season, so I understand the appeal. But this feels like a slight reach here for the Raptors on someone I had ranked in the late 40s. Grade: C+

34. Oklahoma City Thunder: PF Jaylin Williams, Arkansas

Williams led all of college hoops last season in charges taken (54) and brings with him to Oklahoma City a well-rounded two-way game and high basketball IQ. He was someone I thought could be a late first round pick so the Thunder grabbing him early in the second to pair next to Holmgren is a smart move. Grade: B

35. Los Angeles Lakers (from Pacers via Bucks and Magic): SG Max Christie, Michigan State

Getting Christie at 35 after he finished ranked No. 34 in the CBS Sports Top 100 makes this a decent value, but the fit and landing spot is a question. The former five-star recruit has good positional size and a good shooting stroke but developmentally he’s not quite ready to be a rotational player in the NBA – much less for a contender in the Lakers. Grade: B-

36. Detroit Pistons (from Blazers): SF Gabriele Procida, Italy

Procida brings great positional size and projects as a quality shooter after showing some promising development over the last year. He’s probably a stash candidate who won’t be in the NBA for a while, though, and as someone who was ranked outside our second round projections it’s difficult to see the value at No. 36. Grade: C

37. Dallas Mavericks (from Kings): PG Jaden Hardy, G League

Love, love, love this pick value and especially the Mavericks landing spot for Hardy, whom I had ranked as a top-20 talent. He struggled from an efficiency standpoint in the G League Ignite last season but still led the team in scoring and developed a really impressive offensive repertoire in the process. Grade: A+

38. Memphis Grizzlies (from Lakers via Bulls, Wizards and Spurs): PG Kennedy Chandler, Tennessee

After measuring just shy of six-foot without shoes at the NBA Draft Combine, shortest among all participants, Chandler slid all the way to No. 38 despite a clear first-round talent profile. That’s the Grizzlies’ gain here, as they add a dynamic, speedy point guard who was ranked as the No. 22 player in our final prospect rankings. Grade: A

39. Cleveland Cavaliers (from Spurs via Jazz): C Khalifa Diop, Senegal

Diop is a player I didn’t have a top-60 grade on but also don’t hate as a flier here. He’s a big-bodied center with good physical tools and rim-running ability to go with an interesting pedigree as the winner of the EuroCup’s Rising Star Award, which in the past has been won by Kristaps Porzingis and Jonas Valančiūnas. Grade: C

40. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Wizards via Cavaliers): SF Bryce McGowens, Nebraska

This is right around the range where McGowens was ranked and projected. I like his game quite a bit and he was really lethal playing on and off the ball, which could increase his value in the NBA given his versatility to play multiple positions in the backcourt. Grade: B+

41. New Orleans Pelicans: PF E.J. Liddell, Ohio State

Did not expect Liddell to slip out of the first round – much less into the 40s. He’s maybe a smidge undersized for a power forward but plays above his height and can space the floor as a 3-point threat. First-round talent. Grade: A

42. New York Knicks: PG Trevor Keels, Duke

New York adds a player who I had a first-round grade on at No. 42. He’s a physically mature one-and-done from Duke who brings great defensive intensity and can be a good change-of-pace guard who slashes and scores. Grade: A

43. Los Angeles Clippers: PF Moussa Diabate, Michigan

Diabate would have benefited from one more college season. He has an interesting pedigree profile as a former five-star recruit to go with good size for a big man, but outside of a go-to jump-hook, he lacks polish as an offensive weapon and is still pretty raw. Grade: C+

44. Golden State Warriors (from Hawks): SG Ryan Rollins, Toledo

Very nice addition here for the Warriors in grabbing Rollins, who I had as a top-30 prospect in my rankings, at No. 44. Quality scorer who can make shots in a variety of ways and really thrived getting to his spots and lifting over defenders in the mid-range in his two seasons at Toledo. Grade: A

45. Charlotte Hornets: PF Josh Minott, Memphis

Bold pick here, so I’ll give some extra credit for that. Minott is a very toolsy player with a big frame and nice leaping ability. However, he’s very much a raw and unfinished product, particularly on offense where he is mostly just a slasher at this point. The Timberwolves will need to be patient in his development. Grade: B

46. Portland Trail Blazers (from Nets via Pistons): C Ismael Kamagate, France

The 6-11 big has some interesting physical tools between with his size and length. I really like his finishing ability above the rim, but he is a very raw and unfinished product who is still learning the game. Grade: B-

47. Memphis Grizzlies (from Cavaliers via Pelicans and Hawks): SG Vince Williams, VCU

Memphis isn’t afraid to take a bet on players not viewed as projected top 60 players, so I’m going to respect the outside the box selection here even if Williams was ranked in the 80s for us. Improved each of his four years at VCU and developed into a two-way guard with great outside shooting ability. Grade: B

48. Indiana Pacers (from Timberwolves): SF Kendall Brown, Baylor 

Brown was a top-30 prospect in our rankings who I thought had a real shot at going Round 1. Had some inconsistencies as a freshman but the former five-star recruit brings great length and major upside to Indiana. Grade: A

49. Cleveland Cavaliers (from Bulls via Grizzlies, Pistons and Kings): PF Isaiah Mobley, USC

A year after drafting Evan Mobley, Cleveland adds his older brother to its roster to help solidify its frontcourt depth. He’s not the shot-blocker Evan is but he is a floor-spacer who can shoot it well and showed some impressive playmaking at his size while at USC. Grade: A-

50. Minnesota Timberwolves (from Nuggets via 76ers): PG Matteo Spagnolo, Italy

Spagnola has long been a wunderkind dating back to his professional signing at 15 years old with Real Madrid and subsequent debut at 17. There are holes in his game — he is an average athlete who struggled on defense — but his positional size and combo-guard skill set make him a worthwhile flier at this spot. Grade: B-

51. Golden State Warriors (from Raptors via 76ers): SG Tyrese Martin, Connecticut

Martin exploded onto the NBA Draft scene last year at UConn after showing dramatic improvement as a 3-point shooter while improving as a passer taking on a more expansive role playing on the ball. He’s a four-year player who could help a team early in his career. Grade: B-

52. New Orleans Pelicans (from Jazz): C Karlo Matkovic, Serbia

An international product from Serbia, Matkovic brings great size and athleticism to the center position. He’s mostly an in-the-paint threat at this point in his career, but his shot-blocking and rim-running could help him latch on in the NBA. Grade: B

53. Boston Celtics: PG J.D. Davison, Alabama

Low-risk, high-reward proposition in grabbing a former five-star recruit in Davison who has an excellent prospect pedigree but struggled last season with Alabama. He’s still learning and feeling out the game but he’s a tremendous athlete with great burst and real long-term developmental upside. Grade: A-

54. Washington Wizards (from Mavericks): C Yannick Nzosa, Congo

Like this pick at this price. Nzosa is the second-youngest player in this year’s class who brings length and great leaping ability. Someone who could be a lob threat and shot-blocker. Grade: A

55. Golden State Warriors: SF Gui Santos, Brazil

Interesting bet on a prospect with incredible measurables. He brings some versatility to the table having logged experience both on and off the ball and has the skill set to potentially develop into a slashing type of combo forward. Grade: B-

56. Cleveland Cavaliers (from Heat via Pacers): SF Luke Travers, Australia

A combo forward from Perth, Travers over the last year took on a bigger role as an initiator and really showcased his ability to shoulder the load as a part-time playmaker. Needs to improve his shot, but I like his size and willingness to crash the glass. Grade: C+

57. Portland Trail Blazers (from Grizzlies via Jazz): SF Jabari Walker, Colorado

Walker is someone I had as a top-20 prospect entering the season but did not quite live up to expectations after performing well in a smaller role as a freshman at Colorado. But he was an elite catch-and-shoot threat two seasons ago and someone who I think can be a quality 3-and-D player with his 6-foot-8 frame. Grade: B+

58. Milwaukee Bucks (from Suns via Pacers): PG Hugo Besson, France

With the last pick in this year’s draft, Milwaukee adds an appealing 21-year-old in Hugo Besson in the same range I ranked him. At 6-foot-6 he’s a shooting threat from anywhere on the court and had solid catch-and-shoot numbers in the NBL last season that could help him translate his game to the NBA, especially if he can improve his playmaking and continue his development as an outside scoring threat. Grade: A-



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