Mock draft: LA Clippers draft the next Kevin Durant

Tyronn Lue, LA Clippers - Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Tyronn Lue, LA Clippers - Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

Although the LA Clippers have the last pick of the 2023 NBA draft, there is still plenty of talent the front office can choose from. There have been countless late selections that have developed into the league’s brightest stars. This essentially means that the Clippers should deeply analyze the young stars within reach as they could become the face of the franchise.

That said, the young talent throughout this year’s draft class may be as talented as ever. From top to bottom, there are players who can score at all three levels, make the correct plays in traffic, and defend to the highest capacity.

However, one star is entering this year’s draft who has previously drawn comparisons to Kevin Durant, one of the greatest scorers in the history of the NBA. Additionally, this player is almost guaranteed to fall to the Clippers due to the transfer after his freshman season.

With the 30th overall pick, the LA Clippers select Emoni Bates.

Emoni Bates will be, without a doubt, one of the best players available for the LA Clippers at pick number thirty. Coming out of high school, Bates was widely regarded as a potential superstar who could quickly make it to the NBA. These expectations dropped after his freshman season at the University of Memphis.

Furthermore, Bates transferred to Eastern Michigan and proved to NBA scouts that Memphis’ basketball staff did not utilize him correctly. While he may have played in a weaker conference, Bates’ numbers skyrocketed significantly, ultimately demonstrating that he is ready for the NBA.

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Although he is nearly seven feet tall, he can score at all three levels and has a solid defensive presence. If developed correctly, he could become an all-star within his first few seasons in the NBA. It would be a massive mistake if the Clippers’ front office did not take the risk and draft him at the end of the first round.