Lottery odds: 1.7 percent
Draft status: Undecided, but likely to enter
The Dallas Mavericks finished with a losing record for the first time since 1999 and will be in search of a prospect who can help them turn their fortunes around. A midseason move for Nerlens Noel sets Dallas up nicely in the frontcourt going forward, but landing some help in the backcourt should be a priority. Frank Ntilikina, an 18-year old guard from France, has some intriguing upside as a lead guard and as an off-ball option.
Ntilikina has impressed during youth international competitions as a lead ball-handler who can run pick-and-roll. He’s a wiry athlete who can get into the paint and breakdown defenses while finding teammates on the perimeter. Head coach Rick Carlisle will likely need to spend some time working with Ntilikina on the finer points, but the potential is there. Even if that doesn’t come through, Ntilikina has a future as a 3-and-D shooting guard. He’s made 40.7 percent of his 3-point attempts this season as he’s seemingly improved his jumper significantly.
Ntlikina is also long at 6-foot-5 with a 6-foot-10 wingspan. He should be somewhat switchable on the perimeter and is already using his size to generate a 2.2 percent steal rate.
Learn more about Frank Ntilikina at The Step Back.