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  1. The 2014 NBA draft is going to be epic. Our initial 2014 Big Board is one of the most talent-laden I've ever seen. There are as many as five to eight future All-Stars in this group. A number of teams deliberately gutted their rosters this summer to try to get as high as possible in the 2014 lottery. It's going to be big.
  3. The day after the draft, we debuted our first Top 100 of 2014. The Top 100 is a reflection on the consensus of NBA scouts and general managers about a player's relative value in the draft. The Top 100 debuts each year the day after the NBA draft and is finalized the day of the draft.
  5. The Big Board is different. This is a more detailed look at the top 30 players (essentially the first round of the NBA draft) in our Top 100. It tracks player movement and stock fluctuation and is filled with the latest intel from NBA scouts. The biggest takeaway from the first Board for 2014? Not only is the top of the draft stacked, but Kentucky is unbelievably talented.
  7. We have seven Kentucky players in our Big Board -- something that's never happened before. So here it is, our first Big Board for the 2014 draft.
  10. 1Andrew WigginsSCHOOL: KansasAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-8, 195POS: SG
  11. Freshman: No stats
  12. Wiggins begins the year as the consensus No. 1 player on our Big Board. In fact, many scouts believe he's the best young prospect to come into the draft since Kevin Durant. Wiggins is blessed with extreme athleticism. You hear names such as Vince Carter and Dominique Wilkins when people talk about his explosive leaping abilities. Wiggins is also a polished scorer who can shoot the 3 and get to the basket. His only weakness is that he appears to lack the same killer instinct that elite wings such as Kobe Bryant possess. But he's young. Wiggins skipped both national team commitments and camps this summer and, instead, enrolled early at KU. Fans might have to be patient as he figures out how to fit into a pretty loaded Jayhawks squad, but he's going to have to stumble pretty badly to fall out of this spot on our Big Board.
  17. 2Julius RandleSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-9, 225POS: PF
  18. Freshman: No stats
  19. In a normal year, Randle would be the consensus No. 1 player in the draft. He's that good. He has size, strength, athleticism and a well-rounded game; power forwards like Randle don't come along very often. Head coach John Calipari might have to convince Randle to stay in the paint and take fewer 3-pointers. Still, he's expected to anchor a ridiculously talented Kentucky squad this season. Like Wiggins, Randle decided to forgo any summer league play and focus on Kentucky. Despite the talent on the team, scouts expect him to quickly assert himself as the alpha dog. He should provide a serious challenge to Wiggins for the No. 1 pick in the draft.
  23. 3Dante ExumCOUNTRY: AustraliaAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-6, 188POS: PG
  24. 18.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG at FIBA U-19s
  25. Exum had the biggest summer of any player on the Big Board. He was awesome in the FIBA U-19 championships this summer, averaging 18 PPG and nearly 4.0 APG. A 33-point game against Spain in the quarterfinals and a 28-point game in the bronze-medal game versus Lithuania were highlights. He seems to have the perfect blend of size, athleticism and skill to play either the point or the 2. Add in his rangy defense, and he's a true two-way player. He graduates from high school in December and, technically, if he wanted to he could join an NCAA team for the second half of the season. However, he many not have to. He impressed scouts enough this summer that he seems like a lock to be a top-5 pick if he declares for the draft. He's also a dark horse for the No. 1 pick.
  29. 4Jabari ParkerSCHOOL: DukeAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-8, 241POS: SF
  30. Freshman: No stats
  31. Parker, not Wiggins, is the one who once graced the cover of Sports Illustrated. Two years ago, he would've been the No. 1 guy on the board. But Parker's growth leveled out, scouts began to question his athleticism and upside and that combination has caused him to slide a few spots here. Make no mistake, Parker can play. In fact, he might be the most well-rounded player in this class -- think a better version of the Washington Wizards forward Otto Porter.
  35. 5Marcus SmartSCHOOL: Oklahoma StateAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-4, 225POS: PG
  36. 15.4 PPG5.8 RPG4.2 APG
  37. Smart shocked everyone in April when he decided to forgo a likely top-2 selection in the 2013 NBA draft and return to Oklahoma State for his sophomore season. Some saw Smart's decision as bizarre, but to many NBA scouts Smart's choice to return is a testament to his great character. Smart felt he wasn't ready to dominate the NBA. He wanted to improve his jumper, cut down on his turnovers and, most importantly, he wanted to lead the Cowboys to a national championship. Nevertheless, scouts who watched Smart at the FIBA U-19 championships and Team USA minicamp came away wondering if he'll really improve. His jump shot and handle still were pretty shaky and scouts were already picking apart his game. If Smart fixes his weaknesses, he, too, will make a compelling case for the top overall pick -- especially if the team that lands No. 1 needs a point guard.
  41. 6Aaron GordonSCHOOL: ArizonaAGE: 17HT/WT: 6-8, 210POS: PF
  42. Freshman: No stats
  43. The hardest player to leave out of the top five was Gordon. Why? Gordon looks like a young clone of Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin. After Wiggins, Gordon might be the most athletic player in the draft, he plays with a huge motor and is very scrappy. Gordon was, arguably, the best player on Team USA's U-19 squad, leading the team in both points per game (12.6) and rebounds (6.3). Gordon's lack of size for his position and a shaky perimeter game are the two things that keep him from being ranked higher. Arizona plans to play him at small forward this season. If he can make the transition, he's going very, very high.
  47. 7Andrew HarrisonSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-5, 207POS: PG
  48. Freshman: No stats
  49. Harrison is the last player in this group that scouts are convinced is a sure-fire All-Star. Blessed with size, athleticism and terrific court vision, Harrison is the prototypical point guard of the future. The only things pushing his ranking down are question marks about his attitude and work ethic. Kentucky head coach John Calipari has a way of righting wrongs, however, and most scouts feel that a season at Kentucky is exactly what Harrison needs to polish up his resume. He should be Smart's top competitor for the top point guard in the draft.
  53. 8Joel EmbiidSCHOOL: KansasAGE: 19HT/WT: 7-0, 240POS: C
  54. Freshman: No stats
  55. Louisville head coach Rick Pitino is on record as saying Embiid has a chance to be the No. 2 pick in the draft. The scouts I talked to aren't quite ready to go there yet, but they are very, very intrigued. Embiid is the riskiest player in the Top 10, but next to Wiggins, he might have the most long-term potential. Embiid wowed scouts at the McDonald's game and in practices for the Nike Hoop Summit, as well as at adidas Nations. He has rapidly moved up in the rankings. His feel for the game is still a work in progress, but the physical tools are convincing. He has a 7-foot-5 wingspan, is a fluid athlete and is more skilled than one would think. If Bill Self can get him up to speed quickly and get him to play hard all the time, he's the top center prospect in the draft.
  59. 9Dario SaricCOUNTRY: CroatiaAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-10, 223POS: SF
  60. 7.7 PPG6.1 RPG2.1 APG
  61. Saric pulled out of the 2013 draft at the withdrawal deadline and opted to return to Croatia for another season despite a promise from an NBA team that he'd be drafted in the lottery. The early thinking was that the move was a mistake because the 2013 draft was weaker than 2014 projects to be. However, many scouts believe another year at Cibona will allow Saric to make his case that he's the best young international player in the world. He started the season off really slowly and ended it strongly, one international scout said. "Next season, if he plays like he did in March and April, he's going to be a top-10 pick. He's just too talented. Saric certainly made his case this summer with the Croatian U-19 national team. He was second in the tournament in scoring at 20.3 PPG, first in rebounds at 11.2 RPG and first in assists at 4.9 APG. That's an impressive feat. For Saric's critics, they'll point out he also led the tournament in turnovers, as well. Still, most scouts walked away from his performance still believing he's a top-10 pick next year.
  65. 10Chris WalkerSCHOOL: FloridaAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-9, 195POS: SF
  66. Freshman: No stats
  67. Like Embiid, Walker is an upside player. Blessed with elite athletic abilities and length, the question for him will be whether he can make the transition from the 4 to the 3. If he can get his jump shot falling with regularity (and if he can get cleared academically by the NCAA), he'll be a very attractive pick for teams looking for a Paul George-esque wing.
  71. 11Montrezl HarrellSCHOOL: LouisvilleAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-8, 235POS: PF
  72. 5.7 PPG3.6 RPG0.7 BPG
  73. Harrell had a coming out party of sorts in the NCAA tournament and followed it up with another terrific performance for Team USA in the U-19 championships. Harrell was the third leading scorer for Team USA (10.6 PPG) and showed incredible energy. He has so many traits scouts love in a big man -- athleticism, toughness and a terrific motor. He's still a bit raw offensively, but he's a force of nature in the paint.
  77. 12Gary HarrisSCHOOL: Michigan StateAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-4, 210POS: SG
  78. 12.9 PPG2.5 RPG1.4 APG
  79. Harris would've been a lottery pick had he declared for the 2013 draft after his freshman season, but there's reason to believe he can actually improve his status with another year in school. Despite averaging nearly 13 PPG and shooting 41 percent from 3-point range, Harris struggled with a shoulder injury all year that limited his productivity. Harris has been rehabbing his shoulder all summer and is now back in the gym. His defense, toughness and shooting ability all make him a highly coveted asset in 2014.
  83. 13Glenn Robinson IIISCHOOL: MichiganAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-6, 210POS: SF
  84. 11.0 PPG5.4 RPG1.1 APG
  85. Like Harris, Robinson also would've been a likely lottery pick in 2013. He is one of the best athletes in the country and quietly put together a terrific freshman season at Michigan. With Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. off to the NBA, the burden now falls on Robinson and teammate Mitch McGary to carry the load for the Wolverines. Robinson needs to get stronger and keep polishing that perimeter game, but scouts are very high on his future.
  89. 14Willie Cauley-SteinSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 19HT/WT: 7-0, 220POS: C
  90. 8.3 PPG6.2 RPG2.1 BPG
  91. Cauley-Stein made a really wise decision to return for his sophomore season. The long, lanky big man has enormous talent. He's just very raw. Another year at Kentucky, this time surrounded with big-time talent, should help him to have a breakout year. In fact, if Cauley-Stein really takes off and maximizes his traits, we might have him way too low.
  95. 15Mario HezonjaCOUNTRY: CroatiaAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-6, 200POS: SG
  96. 2.5 PPG33.3 FG%2.3 RPG
  97. I saw Hezonja playing at the 2011 Eurocamp for the U-19 Croatia team. He was my favorite player in the camp despite the fact he was just 16. I loved his athletic ability, but more importantly, I loved his confidence. He's now playing for FC Barcelona, one of the best teams in Europe. He's the only player in Europe who can really rival Dario Saric, in terms of talent. Injuries kept Hezonja out of the Under-19s this year, which might have hurt his draft stock a bit. The big question for Hezonja will be whether he gets the playing time he needs to continue to develop his game.
  101. 16Mitch McGarySCHOOL: MichiganAGE: 21HT/WT: 6-10, 250POS: PF
  102. 7.5 PPG0.7 BPG6.3 RPG
  103. I was pretty surprised that McGary decided to ditch the 2013 draft. After his dominant performance in the NCAA tournament, his stock was as high as it's likely ever to be given that he's old for his class at 21. Now he has to live up to expectations that will be very hard to match. I love his toughness, energy and his skills around the basket -- but he'll be under a microscope this season and given that Trey Burke got him lots of easy buckets, scouts are a little more cautious when trying to project his draft status next season.
  107. 17Jerami GrantSCHOOL: SyracuseAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-8, 203POS: SF
  108. 3.9 PPG0.5 APG3.0 RPG
  109. Grant didn't play a huge role for Syracuse as a freshman, but scouts are expecting him to play a much bigger role this season. Grant is another great athlete who can shoot the basketball and excel in transition. He was looking good for Team USA in the U-19 practices before coming down with mononucleosis and being scratched from the team. If he has a breakout season the way Michael Carter-Williams had, it's not out of the question that he goes in the lottery.
  113. 18Sam DekkerSCHOOL: WisconsinAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-8, 215POS: SF
  114. 9.6 PPG39.1 3PT%3.4 RPG
  115. Dekker is a favorite of the analytics crowd after a very effective freshman season. Not only does he have size and athleticism for his position, he's also a deadly shooter. He reminds a lot of scouts of Gordon Hayward.
  119. 19Jarnell StokesSCHOOL: TennesseeAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-8, 250POS: PF
  120. 12.4 PPG1.4 BPG9.6 RPG
  121. Stokes has been a quiet prospect over a season and a half in Tennessee. He's one of the youngest college juniors in the nation. The talented big man is a load in the paint, has soft hands and, when he plays hard, can be unstoppable down low. He had a solid showing for Team USA in the U-19s, averaging 7.4 PPG and 4.7 RPG in 12 MPG. He needs to continue to improve his jump shot and stay in great shape to keep his stock here, but the talent is undeniable.
  125. 20James YoungSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 17HT/WT: 6-7, 200POS: SF
  126. Freshman: No stats
  127. Young is the fourth player on this board from Kentucky, and on sheer talent, he's as good as anyone on the list. Young is a long, athletic scorer who aggressively gets to the basket. He plays with a great motor and has some of the same intangibles as Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. His ranking may depend more on where he lands in the Kentucky pecking order. If he earns a starting spot over Poythress, he'll move up the rankings.
  131. 21Alex PoythressSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-7, 215POS: SF
  132. 11.2 PPG6.0 RPG42.4 3PT%
  133. I wasnt really sure where to put Poythress on this list. Many scouts still believe that, on sheer talent alone, he's still a top-10 pick. Others arent convinced. He was strangely passive as a freshman, so much so that he eventually lost his starting job. That said, he has lottery-pick talent, and the Kentucky coaching staff really believes in him. If things start to click with him mentally, he's a lottery pick for sure.
  137. 22LaQuinton RossSCHOOL: Ohio StateAGE: 20HT/WT: 6-8, 225POS: SF
  138. 8.3 PPG2.9 RPG38.9 3PT%
  139. Ross was another breakout star in the NCAA tournament. After two largely ineffective seasons at Ohio State, he came on strong late in the season and then put up some really impressive performances against Iowa State and Arizona in the tournament. With Deshaun Thomas off to the NBA, Ross should see a lot more of the scoring responsibilities fall on his shoulders. He has the size, athletic abilities and skill set that scouts love in a small forward. If he can play like he did in the tournament consistently over the course of the season, he'll be yet another player who will challenge for the lottery.
  143. 23Semaj ChristonSCHOOL: XavierAGE: 20HT/WT: 6-3, 187POS: PG
  144. 15.2 PPG2.9 RPG4.6 APG
  145. Christon is one of just four point guards on the Big Board. Length and athleticism are his primary calling cards. A number of scouts believe he'll be a better prospect than Dennis Schroeder, a similar player from Germany who went No. 17 in the 2013 draft. Christon needs to improve his jump shot and keep turnovers down, but there is a lot of talent here.
  149. 24Jahii CarsonSCHOOL: Arizona StateAGE: 20HT/WT: 5-10, 175POS: PG
  150. 18.5 PPG3.7 RPG5.1 APG
  151. He might be on the smallish side, but Carson wowed everyone this summer with his play at adidas Nations. He might be one of the two or three quickest players in the country and is an explosive athlete who can really score the basketball. Carson still needs to work on his court vision, but he took another big step this summer to landing somewhere in the first round.
  155. 25Dakari JohnsonSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 17HT/WT: 6-10, 250POS: C
  156. Freshman: No stats
  157. Johnson is the sixth player on our board from Kentucky and, were he likely to start as a freshman, would probably be 10 to 15 spots higher. There's a dearth of centers on our board, and Johnson is the only one who really plays like a traditional, back-to-the-basket big man. He's strong, physical and should provide a boost off the bench for the Wildcats this season behind Cauley-Stein.
  161. 26Aaron HarrisonSCHOOL: KentuckyAGE: 18HT/WT: 6-5, 210POS: SG
  162. Freshman: No stats
  163. That's right. We have seven Wildcats in our top 30. That has never happened before. Harrison doesn't get the love his brother receives despite the fact that in many ways, they are the same kind of player. Andrew's ability to play the point is what really sets him apart. Aaron is strong, athletic and can score from everywhere, too.
  167. 27Doug McDermottSCHOOL: CreightonAGE: 21HT/WT: 6-7, 210POS: SF
  168. 23.2 PPG7.7 RPG49.0 3PT%
  169. McDermott has been dominating college hoops for three years, but he didn't really capture the imagination of scouts until he showed up at the Team USA mini-camp in Vegas this summer. There, McDermott did what he always does, knocking down shots from everywhere on the floor. But this time he was doing it against other NBA players. In short, he looked like he belonged among them, and with shooting at a premium in the NBA, he should end up landing somewhere in the first round.
  173. 28Isaiah AustinSCHOOL: BaylorAGE: 19HT/WT: 7-0, 215POS: PF
  174. 13.0 PPG8.3 RPG1.7 BPG
  175. Austin was ranked as a lottery pick at the start of last season, but the more scouts saw of him the more questions they had. He has great size and is very skilled for a big man. But his thin frame and stuck-in-between game have really hurt his stock. Is he a five or a four? Right now hes neither, and until he starts to thrive at one or the other, scouts will continue to see him as a tweener.
  179. 29James McAdooSCHOOL: North CarolinaAGE: 20HT/WT: 6-9, 223POS: PF
  180. 14.4 PPG7.3 RPG1.1 BPG
  181. McAdoo was also ranked in the lottery on our Big Board last year, but a disappointing sophomore season caused his stock to tumble. There's still hope for McAdoo. He has all the physical characteristics you want in a power forward. He's long, explosive and very quick. But he has to dramatically improve his offensive game. If he does, he'll move up 10 spots on our Board. But, he's going to have to prove it.
  184. 30 Vasilije Micic COUNTRY: SerbiaAGE: 19HT/WT: 6-4, 185POS: PG
  185. 12.9 PPG, 4.8 APG at U-19s
  186. Micic was another international breakout player at the U-19's this summer. The Serbian point guard averaged 12.9 PPG and 4.8 APG and made the argument that he was the best young pure point guard in the world. Of all the point guards on our Big Board, Micic has the purest game. He is simply special when it comes to seeing the floor. He's not a great athlete, but appeared good enough to get wherever he wanted to against Team USA's guards.
  189. Next five in: Next five in: Rodney Hood, G/F, Duke; Adreian Payne, F/C, Michigan State; Rasheed Sulaimon, G, Duke; T.J. Warren, F, NC State; Branden Dawson, F, Michigan State
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