NBA Draft 2020: 5 riskiest first-round prospects

Anthony Edwards, Georgia Bulldogs, (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Anthony Edwards, Georgia Bulldogs, (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /
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Every first-round pick in the NBA Draft believes they’re ticketed for stardom, but these five prospects need to work hard to avoid becoming busts. 

Every NBA mock draft spends a lot of time articulating the potential of each potential first-round pick. Those rosy outlooks make for great reading for the prospects themselves, but the ugly truth is that quite a few first-round picks this season will fail to carve out meaningful NBA careers.

The following five likely first-rounders need to be very concerned with their ability to become high-profile busts. Each player has a significant upside, but they also have serious flaws in their respective games. If those flaws aren’t corrected quickly, any one of the five could find themselves struggling to earn their second NBA contract.

5. Obi Toppin

Plenty of scouts believe Toppin is one of the safest picks in this year’s draft. He’s a terrific leaper who also flashed the ability to shoot the ball effectively from three at Dayton.

What scouts aren’t talking about enough is Toppin’s struggles to move laterally. If he’s going to develop into a quality switch-defender at the next level he will need to find a way to stay in front of high-scoring wings. Nothing about his college tape shows that he’s anywhere near ready to handle that kind of responsibility.

Toppin will make a lot of highlight plays during his rookie season, but keep a close eye on whether or not he’s able to do anything other than finish at the rim via pick-and-roll. He’s got miles to go before he’s ready to do anything with the ball in his hands. Combine that with legitimate questions about his ability to develop into a switch defender and it’s easy to see how he could turn into a high-profile bust. At the very least, teams should resist the temptation to draft him solely based on his highlight reel.