Mocking the Mock: 5 worst and most interesting fits from ESPN’s latest NBA Mock Draft

The latest ESPN NBA Mock Draft is live. Here are the best and worst fits from the experts.

Zach Edey, Tyler Wahl, Purdue
Zach Edey, Tyler Wahl, Purdue / John Fisher/GettyImages
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Best fit: Cody Williams to the Blazers at No. 5

Cody Williams has been remarkably efficient and productive as a freshman at Colorado, completely eschewing preseason expectations. Williams was projected as a raw, half-formed prospect out of high school. He still is raw, frankly. But, that hasn't prevented him from maximizing his current skill set, using his athleticism and touch to dominate as a slasher and play-finisher while hitting enough 3s to really spike NBA interest.

The numbers are undeniably impressive, as he's averaging 14.2 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 1.8 assists on .592/.471/.708 splits. Williams has oscillated between point guard duties and playing off the ball, making himself available on cuts to the rim or for spot-up 3s. He doesn't have the tightest handle, but Williams can move fluidly downhill and pass effectively on the move.

What will draw teams to Williams is the upside. He's the ideal modern NBA wing on paper at 6-foot-8. The intersection of size, athleticism, and basketball I.Q. is priceless, especially in a class perceived as weak. Williams is not ready for point guard duties at the next level, but that's precisely why the Portland Trail Blazers fit is so strong. The Blazers are chock full of ball-handlers, from Scoot Henderson, to Anfernee Simons, to Malcolm Brogdon. Williams wouldn't be asked to do too much. Instead, he can focus on his strengths — straight-line drives, finishes at the rim, and spot-up 3s. The lack of 3-point volume is a concern, but Williams' touch around the basket, combined with his high success rate on low volume, establishes optimism.

Portland can view Williams as a connective piece — a wing who will thrive out in transition or attacking rotating defenses in the halfcourt. As he develops his handle over time, Williams has the chance to grow into a more pronounced role. If he can consistently generate advantages on the perimeter, the All-Star ceiling comes into full view.

The Blazers love to gamble on athletes. Williams fits the bill, but he's also skilled enough at a position of need to really wow the front office. He'd make an excellent top-five pick.