Dec 19, 2013; New York, NY, USA; Duke Blue Devils forward Jabari Parker (1) celebrates with Duke Blue Devils forward Rodney Hood (5) after scoring against the UCLA Bruins during the second half at Madison Square Garden. The Blue Devils won 80-63. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

NBA Draft Rumors: Jabari Parker a lock for No. 1 pick if Utah Jazz win lottery

There’s much debate over who the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft will be this year, leading to lots of speculation. ESPN NBA insider Chad Ford offered up the theory that it really depends on who gets the top pick when determining who the first draft choice will be.

While Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid are the top two prospects in eyes of Ford, he stated in a chat session with fans on Wednesday that he believes Jabari Parker is a lock for the top pick if the Utah Jazz win the draft lottery. Not only did Ford think Parker was a lock, but he thinks adding the Duke star would make Utah a playoff team in 2014-15.

I really like their stable of young players. Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Trey Burke and Alex Burks all have so much talent. If they could add an alpha dog like Jabari Parker (who I think is a lock to go to Utah at No. 1 if they win the top pick) … I think they will be a playoff team in the West next year.

The Jazz have been a surprise this season and the draft day trade that landed them Trey Burke from the Minnesota Timberwolves has definitely paid off. There’s also the angle of Parker being Mormon, as analysts have played up the fact that Salt Lake City, a Mormon community, would welcome a Mormon star like Parker with open arms.

So many things about Parker to Utah makes sense, and while he’d be a lock at No. 1 overall if Utah wins the lottery, they may still find a way to land him regardless.


Tags: Jabari Parker NBA Draft 2014 Utah Jazz

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