2022 NBA Draft: Debating case for Chet Holmgren, Paolo Banchero, Jabari Smith or Jaden Ivey as No. 1 prospect

Who’s the No. 1 prospect within the 2022 NBA Draft?

We’ll discover out on Thursday evening who the Orlando Magic worth because the No. 1 choose as they choose first total for the primary time since 2004 – however there’s removed from a consensus view on the high of this draft amongst NBA entrance workplaces. And ditto for our crew of specialists. In our ultimate high 100 rankings comprised of a consensus taken from rankings by CBS Sports activities specialists Gary Parrish, Matt Norlander, David Cobb and myself, together with Adam Finkelstein and Travis Branham of 247Sports, there have been 4 completely different gamers who earned votes at No. 1.

So who’s the No. 1 prospect within the 2022 NBA Draft?

The scouts have their opinions however our math within the consensus rankings decided Chet Holmgren was deserving of the honour – however under every of us have said our circumstances for our selection because the No. 1 professional prospect on this yr’s draft. This is who every of us had within the high spot, and why, as we barrel in the direction of Thursday evening’s draft with a variety of views concerning the high of the category.

Need extra evaluation of the highest prospects within the NBA Draft? Pay attention under and subscribe to the Eye on School Basketball podcast the place we take a deep dive on the highest gamers heading to the subsequent degree.

The case for Chet Holmgren

I perceive the arguments for Jabari Smith, Paolo Banchero and even Jaden Ivey to go first total within the 2022 NBA Draft. I do not suppose any of them are ridiculous choices. However I nonetheless genuinely consider Holmgren is the perfect prospect out there this yr, and that is why I additionally consider Orlando ought to take him with the No. 1 choose. He is an elite rim-protector on protection who can float on offense, bounce it, shoot and customarily exploit matchups.

If a conventional massive guards him, he can in all probability go round him. If a smaller participant guards him, he can undoubtedly shoot proper over him. Am I involved concerning the slight body? Certain, on some degree, I assume. However as ESPN’s Jonathon Givony famous on a current podcast, what number of nice prospects have fallen wanting greatness strictly as a result of they’re too skinny? He could not consider any. Neither can I. So I am simply going to imagine Holmgren’s distinctive skill-set will permit him to beat his distinctive body and ultimately emerge as the perfect participant from this draft. – Gary Parrish

Holmgren has the very best ceiling within the draft in my view. He alters the sport on each ends of the ground. There simply aren’t many 7-footers, anyplace on the earth, who can shield the rim, stretch the ground, and nonetheless present such an environment friendly inside ending presence. He is even a greater ball-handler and passer than I feel some persons are giving him credit score for. However on high of all that, I am only a massive believer in his mentality and that inner-toughness. I do know he has to construct up his physique, but when there’s one factor that NBA groups have all found out the way to do at an exceptionally high-level, it is that. Adam Finkelstein

We all know the whole world is questioning his physique however the fact is, Holmgren has by no means had a historical past of accidents or proven that his lack of energy is an precise hindrance. You will not have the ability to throw him on the Joel Embiids of the world, however nobody can throw something at him. In 4 to 5 years, we might legitimately be speaking about him being one of many faces of the League together with his capability to dribble, go and shoot in contrast to any we’ve seen at his measurement and size together with the truth that he’s an elite defender and rim protector. Travis Branham

I perceive the attract of Smith and Banchero, however to me Holmgren’s upside is a notch above. Smith lacks playmaking potential – Holmgren can blossom superbly in that division. Banchero’s suspect as a 3-point shooter and on protection – Holmgren has a candy stroke and is without doubt one of the greatest rim-protecting prospects we have ever seen. I do not purchase the boisterous ravings concerning the distinctive physique kind, both. Holmgren’s been capable of maintain his personal towards stronger gamers his whole life, and the NBA guidelines will proceed to evolve in his favor. He is already confirmed that he can carry out on the highest ranges of novice basketball, and he additionally has essentially the most room to enhance on any of the highest three prospects. Add all of it up, and that definitely seems like the perfect participant within the draft class. Colin Ward-Henninger

The case for Paolo Banchero

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Be it for CBSSports.com, on Eye on School Basketball or on CBS Sports activities HQ, I’ve defined my place on having Banchero No. 1 on my massive board many occasions in current weeks. However right here, proper up towards the draft, as soon as extra, with feeling. Banchero is essentially the most smart choose of any participant on this class as a result of he is essentially the most developed and confirmed expertise. His numbers at Duke, with a number of different first-rounders within the beginning lineup, have been past passable: 17.2 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 3.2 apg for the top-rated offensive crew within the nation, per KenPom.com.

Banchero was a 52.% 2-point shooter and 33.8% from 3-point vary. No one on this draft has Banchero’s mixture of measurement + ability + contact + passing capability + play-creation + rebounding prowess + aggressive edge. He has an above-average deal with, can work the submit, shoot from past the arc, and is not a black gap. The hesitation with him at No. 1 stems from the truth that he isn’t as probably damaging of a 3-point shooter as Jabari Smith, Chet Holmgren and even Jaden Ivey are. However he can nonetheless shoot it. Defensively, he is bought extra floor to make up. Nobody is as able to play within the NBA tomorrow like Banchero, although, and I feel he’ll finally show to be a multiple-time All-Star by the top of his second contract. – Matt Norlander

The case for Jaden Ivey

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There are safer prospects on the high of this class (Smith Jr.) and larger increase / bust propositions, too (Holmgren), however nobody possesses the uncommon mixture of explosive athleticism and creation capability that Ivey has on this draft. He is a human firecracker who can pop to the rim. He has the potential to grow to be a real lead guard on the subsequent degree if he continues to develop and enhance as a decision-maker.

At worst he could be a change-of-pace initiator whose dynamic explosiveness helps ease the burden of a crew’s No. 1 initiating choice. I might take him no. 1 over everybody on this class on the prospect his playmaking improves even marginally, if not considerably, and his enchancment as a shooter during the last yr portends very properly for him as a blossoming star getting into the NBA. Kyle Boone

The case for Jabari Smith Jr.

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What most clearly separates Smith from Banchero, Holmgren and others as the perfect choose at No. 1 within the 2022 NBA Draft is his elite outdoors taking pictures. At 6-10 and with a 42% 3-point mark on 5.5 makes an attempt per sport in his lone season at Auburn, Smith initiatives as a superb long-term shooter on the subsequent degree. Whereas Banchero and Holmgren every flashed some vary from the perimeter of their lone school seasons, neither initiatives as elite in any side of the sport fairly like Smith does as an out of doors shooter.

Provided that Smith additionally boasts wonderful defensive upside and a blossoming shot-creation portfolio offensively, he’s the most secure wager of the group to in the future be an NBA All-Star. With promising younger guards like Jalen Suggs and Cole Anthony distributing basketball in Orlando, Smith would make a superb addition to the Magic’s core group. Although it might take years for Smith to succeed in his full potential, it is simple to see him turning into the Magic’s main scorer early in his profession because of feathery taking pictures contact he’ll carry into the league on day one. David Cobb

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