The 2024 NBA Draft picture will continue to get clearer over the next eight months. Everything is fresh and new right now. The G League Ignite played two exhibition games against the Perth Wildcats, and the contests featured five projected first-round picks. Action is underway in Europe and the NCAA season is just ramping up. There is a real race to see who goes number one overall, and plenty to be decided.
The Portland Trail Blazers traded Damian Lillard and embarked on a rebuild. Scoot Henderson will lead their talented young roster, but it will be multiple years before the franchise is back in contention. They will likely have two first-round picks in 2024 and nailing them will be key in making it a short retool.
The Blazers expect to have a high lottery selection, and there is plenty of talent available in this class. Can Portland find the right fit to build around Scoot? ESPN’s stat-based projections (subscription required) were used to determine the order, and here is a too-early look at all 30 selections in the first round.
1. San Antonio Spurs select Ron Holland
The Spurs just drafted Victor Wembanyama first overall and have won the lottery three times since its inception in 1985. San Antonio has rarely appeared in it, but things usually go well when they do. ESPN’s projections are down on Wemby’s team this season, but the 7’3 big man will make their games a cannot-miss events.
If San Antonio gets the first selection, they must select the best player available. Holland is the wing every NBA team covets. He is 6’8 with the ability to handle the ball, get to the rim, and be an impactful defender. The teenager is an exceptional finisher inside and loves to attack. His jumper needs to improve, but there is plenty to love about Holland.
The Spurs need more ball-handling and playmaking around Wemby. Holland’s passing is improving and should continue to grow. San Antonio would increase their versatility and flexibility by getting the 6’8 wing and no team would look forward to facing them.
Ron Holland has the early lead in the race for the number-one overall pick, but there are plenty of talented players hoping to overtake him.