NBA Draft: Grading every first-round pick after rookie year

2022 NBA Draft Class. Photo by Arturo Holmes/Getty Images
2022 NBA Draft Class. Photo by Arturo Holmes/Getty Images /
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Tari Eason played all 82 games of the 2022-23 NBA regular season. Christian Braun played 95 when you include the playoffs. Chet Holmgren, the second-overall pick, didn’t play a single minute. These are the sample sizes on which to judge an entire draft class a year after the 2022 NBA Draft.

In one sense, it’s crazy to think you can determine a player’s eventual outcome after a season’s worth of games. Yet NBA teams have to try their best to do exactly that, evaluating each draft pick to understand their value. Is this player certain enough to be a starter that a team passes over a player at their position in the 2023 draft? Who will get traded this summer from this draft class?

How does the 2022 NBA Draft class look a year later?

Evaluating the production and upside of each prospect also allows you to look back to last June’s draft. How did each team do in the 2022 NBA Draft? Did they take a player who would have gone much higher this time around, or are they stuck hoping the terribly slow start doesn’t turn into a terribly short career? What looked positive a year ago may look differently now.

With that in mind, we’ve gone back to grade all 30 picks in the first round of last year’s draft. How did teams do? Who did they miss out on? We’ll try to grade each team based on their position in the draft; the Orlando Magic can’t outperform their draft position picking first, but they can underperform if they took a player who isn’t cut out to be the best player in this class.

Let’s dive in at No. 1 and see how each team in the association did in the 2022 NBA Draft.