3. Jarrett Culver
The chances of landing Jarrett Culver at No. 8 are pretty similar to the chances of the team landing De’Andre Hunter. The Phoenix Suns are likely going with a point guard in this draft. The Bulls are expected to add to their backcourt, likely a point guard as well, but it could depend on who’s available.
Nearly all mocks have Culver going as a top-five prospect, going either to the Lakers or Cavaliers. But CBS Sports has it all laid out in their mock to allow the Atlanta Hawks to land Culver, a promising 3-and-D prospect out of Texas Tech.
This mock has the usual top-three of Zion, Ja Morant and R.J. Barrett going in that order with the Lakers taking Hunter and the Cavaliers taking a shot with Cam Reddish. Kyle Boone then projects Darius Garland to the Suns and Coby White to the Bulls.
So why would the Hawks be excited for Culver to fall to them? His frame of 6’6″ and 195 pounds should allow him to play as the 2 or the 3 for the Hawks, allowing coach Lloyd Pierce to mix and match his wings of Taurean Prince, Kevin Huerter and Kent Bazemore with Culver. Or Culver could even replace Bazemore if the Hawks try to move his contract this offseason.
Jarrett Culver did it all for Texas Tech last season. Per NBADraft.net, his 18.5 points per game accounted for 25.3 percent of the team’s offensive output. Add his 3.6 assists per game in and he was involved in over 35 percent of the Red Raiders’ scoring plays.
The Red Raiders were known for playing tough defense as well, so if the Hawks weren’t able to land De’Andre Hunter, Culver would be just as good of a fit on the defensive side of the ball. The Hawks are in need of defensive help and the two-way abilities of Culver would be great to have alongside Trae Young. He improved from his freshman to sophomore years at Texas Tech and would be expected to grow and adapt to the NBA game as well.