Cade Cunningham may be the 2021 NBA Draft favorite, but that doesn’t necessarily make him the favorite for the No. 1 pick.
With the draft slowly approach, talks are heating up that the Detroit Pistons, owners of the No. 1 pick, may not go with the guard out of Oklahoma State.
In The Athletic’s John Hollinger’s most recent draft update, Hollinger reports that “the Pistons are intrigued by G-League Ignite guard Jalen Green and could take him over Cunningham.” If that happens, the Houston Rockets could, of course, swoop in and take the versatile guard with the second pick.
For the Pistons, it may be more beneficial for the franchise to overlook the potential best talent in the draft for the best fit — though that wouldn’t mean a severe drop-off in talent.
The Pistons took a point guard last year with the No. 7 pick in Killian Hayes, and drafting a ball-dominant guard like Cunningham could interrupt Hayes’ progress or even make his role obsolete. Detroit also missed out in securing a top-tier big man with Christian Wood, and they haven’t ruled out going with the 7-foot Evan Mobley.
Who knows exactly where they’ll go?
This situation may not be ideal for Rockets fans hoping to land the No. 1 pick after a season of doing everything they can to be the worst team in the league, but it DOES make the draft more exciting even if it does make it more stressful. And let’s be honest, wouldn’t you rather have the best talent in the draft possibly at play for the second pick than not at all?