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June 26, 2024

NBA mock draft roundup: Time for Sixers to make a pick at No. 16

Gathering experts' final predictions of what the Sixers will do with the No. 16 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft.

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McCain 6.26.24 Rob Kinnan/USA TODAY Sports

Could Duke guard Jared McCain's elite three-point shooting allow him to carve out a role for the Sixers should they select him at No. 16?

The first round of the 2024 NBA Draft begins in just a handful of hours, and as things currently stand the Sixers own the No. 16 pick. Trades involving the pick — either on its own for a rotation player or as part of a collection of assets for a star — remain very much in play. But it takes two to tango, and so for now, let's operate under the assumption that they will keep their first-round pick and select one of this year's draft prospects. 

Who do the experts see them drafting?

Jonathan Givony and Jeremy Woo, ESPN: Jared McCain, G, Duke

McCain appears to be considered the most likely option for the Sixers at this point, an outstanding long-range shooter whose deficiencies on the defensive end are noteworthy. But McCain shot 41.4 percent from beyond the arc on 5.8 attempts per game in his lone season at Duke, is an excellent free throw shooter and posted strong rebounding numbers for a 6-foot-3 guard.

Givony writes:

"The Sixers are known to have conducted only a handful of workouts, possibly the fewest of any team drafting in the first round. That info has caused some speculation that this pick could be on the move, depending on which player falls to No. 16. Regardless of who is picking, McCain has an easy niche he can fill in the NBA with his scoring versatility, basketball instincts, competitiveness and smarts, making him an attractive option for teams drafting in this range." [ESPN]

Sam Vecenie, The Athletic: Rob Dillingham, G, Kentucky

In what would be a stunning upside play for the Sixers, Dillingham — often projected to be a top five pick during the college basketball season — appears to be sliding on many teams' boards. It is hard to imagine that the Sixers would not jump at the chance to add him to their roster in hopes of finding another star guard from Kentucky in the back half of the first round.

Vecenie breaks down Dillingham's draft stock and what makes him a tantalizing prospect to many:

"Many league sources believe the 76ers could move their first-round pick to get immediate help. Philadelphia has cleared significant cap space to go star-hunting, so, if the right deal becomes available, this pick could be used to further that goal. Even if the Sixers believe they could potentially sign a star in free agency, filling out the roster with ready-made veterans around Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey will be critical. 

It’s hard to find the landing spot for Dillingham on draft night with the present order. Portland, Sacramento, Memphis and Chicago all have backcourts of the future in some respect, and Dillingham doesn’t fit Oklahoma City’s model of selecting players with at least average (if not well above-average) positional size. All of this has led to league sources wondering if a team will trade up to take Dillingham if he slides into this area. 

The 76ers will likely take a “best player available” approach under Daryl Morey if they keep the pick. Dillingham averaged 15.2 points and 3.9 assists per game this past season while shooting 47.5 percent from the field and 44.4 percent from 3. He maintains control well despite playing at a fast pace, using a bevy of crossovers and well-timed hesitation moves to maximize his speed. Evaluators are confident he’ll be able to separate from his man in the NBA." [The Athletic]

Jonathan Wasserman, Bleacher Report: Jared McCain, G, Duke

Another vote for the Blue Devils' long-range marksman here, who Wasserman compares to Toronto Raptors guard Immanuel Quickley.

Wasserman argues that McCain is more than just a shooter: 

"Shotmaking has and will always be what powers Jared McCain's offense and value, but his effectiveness this year in ball-screen situations, using change of speed, footwork, crafty finishing and vision, point to more on-ball upside with his creativity and feel.

The buzz on McCain has been quiet, but most expect he'll go somewhere in the late lottery or teens." [Bleacher Report]

Krysten Peek, Yahoo! Sports: Ja'Kobe Walter, G/F, Baylor

A talented wing who will turn 20 years old soon before the start of the 2024-25 season with a 6-foot-10 wingspan, teams, scouts and experts alike appear to differ on what Walter's true upside is. His scoring efficiency in his lone collegiate season were poor, but there are signs of untapped potential, Peek argues: 

"Walter's game translates better to the NBA than what scouts saw from him in college. He has good size at the guard position and elite shooting mechanics. With the spacing of the NBA game, it’ll free him more as a shooting threat with how well Tyrese Maxey plays with the ball in his hands and how much space Joel Embiid commands in the paint." [Yahoo! Sports]

Gary Parrish, CBS Sports: Tristan da Silva, F, Colorado

Da Silva is considered one of the most ready-made role players among this year's draft prospects, a wing with a strong frame who is more than capable of knocking down threes. His ability to contribute immediately would certainly appeal to the Sixers, though he is already 23 years old. Parrish argues that is the ideal mold for the Sixers: 

"For a Sixers franchise in win-now mode, adding a 23 year-old like da Silva who can guard his position and reliably make 3-pointers should be preferable to selecting a teenager who needs time to develop. The forward will be a plug-and-play addition for basically anybody on Day 1. He shot above 39% from 3-point range in each of his past two seasons at Colorado." [CBS Sports]

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