With the NBA Draft order set as a result of Tuesday night's Lottery, mock Draft season can begin in earnest.
And begin it did: within hours of Tuesday's lottery, several sites posted new mock Drafts. A quick glance at three of them shows they believe the Orlando Magic will use the fifth pick on an international player.
SB Nation NBA scribe Kevin O'Connor says Orlando should use its pick on Mario Hezonja, an offensively minded Croatian swingman. "The Croatian's style of play can sometimes be mistaken for selfishness, but he's really just that great offensively," says O'Connor. "Overseas he has showcased perfect mechanics on his jumper and the ability to drive to the cup and dunk over anyone."
In the three years since starting their rebuild, the Magic have yet to put together a coherent, consistent offense, so adding Hezonja's scoring would seem to make a great deal of sense. Then again, Orlando's struggles defensively make it more than reasonable to suppose it'll select a player more renowned for his work at that end of the floor.
DraftExpress agrees with O'Connor; it also has Orlando making Hezonja its pick. Its justification for the pick is similar to O'Connor's.
"The Magic have gone with defensive oriented players with their last three lottery picks, but Hezonja would give them a huge shot in the arm offensively," writes DraftExpress, "particularly from the perimeter, where they sorely need to add outside shooting to help their floor spacing."
In 14.5 minutes per game for FC Barcelona, Hezonja posted averages of 4.7 points, 1.9 rebounds, and 1.3 assists and shot 39.2 percent on three-pointers.
And then there's ESPN's Chad Ford, who continues to drive the Kristaps Porziņģis bandwagon. Porziņģis, a Latvian stretch forward, was Ford's pick for Orlando even before the Lotto. The ESPN scribe believes the 19-year-old "has a chance to be the best player on the team." Porziņģis will need time to adjust to the NBA game, certainly, but at 19 he averaged 10.8 points in just 21.3 minutes per game playing in Spain's Liga ACB.
The Magic have lots of needs to address and plenty of viable players they could add at no. 5. Hang on tight, because the silly season is only just getting started.