In his first mock 2014 NBA Draft for the Orlando Sentinel, Orlando Magic beat writer Josh Robbins pegs the Magic to select Noah Vonleh and Elfrid Payton with the fourth and 12th overall picks, respectively.
Vonleh, whom Robbins calls "a raw stretch-4," posted per-game averages of 11.3 points, nine rebounds, and 1.4 blocks for Indiana in his freshman campaign. He shot 52.3 percent from the floor and 48.5 percent from three-point distance, albeit on just 1.1 triple-tries per game. In this exercise, the Magic choose Vonleh over Arizona forward Aaron Gordon, Kansas center Joel Embiid, and Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart, among other players.
Payton, "a tenacious defender" in Robbins' estimation, would come to Orlando via UL-Lafayette. In three seasons with the Ragin' Cajuns, Payton averaged 14.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, 4.9 assists, and two steals on 48.5 percent shooting from the floor. As a junior, Payton notched 19.2 points per game to go with six boards, 5.9 assists, and 2.3 steals. He connected on 50.9 percent of his shot attempts.
With Jameer Nelson advancing in age--the 10-year veteran turns 33 in February--Orlando needs a young point guard, like Payton, but this mock is the first Orlando Pinstriped Post has seen pairing the Magic with the highly-regarded junior. Syracuse point guard Tyler Ennis, another impressive prospect, slips to the Toronto Raptors at the 20-spot in Robbins' mock.
The NBA Draft is set for Thursday, June 26th.