Whose NBA Mock Draft Was The Most Accurate?


Jun 25, 2015; Brooklyn, NY, USA; General view of the full first round draft board at the conclusion of the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Every year I find it fun to track which NBA mock drafts were most accurate. Projecting the draft is a crap shoot in the first place, but it’s fun to see who hit the bulls-eye. My process is to input the top mock drafts into a spreadsheet.

Then to track the accuracy of the mock draft I look at a couple factors. First, I look at how many picks were selected correctly. This is self-explanatory. Second, I look at the variance in where prospects were selected. What this means is that I take the absolute value of where the prospect was projected to be picked and where he was picked.

More from The J-Notes

So, for example, DraftExpress had Justise Winslow projected to go fifth overall. Winslow ended up going tenth, so you subtract ten from five to get a variance of five. If they have a player that went undrafted, I add a variance of 20. I add up the variance for all for the players they had projected to go in the first round. I then take the total variance number for their first round selections and divide them by the number of picks they got correct. This gives more weight to selecting a pick correctly. That final factor is the number I use to judge who was most accurate.  The lower the number, the better.

So, who killed it this year?

DraftExpress and ESPN(Chad Ford) prove why they are the industry leaders. DraftExpress killed it this year. They selected 15 of the 30 first round picks correctly. Not only that, but their average variance was only a 3.3. This means that when they got a pick incorrect, they were only off by a little over three draft spots. That is pretty outstanding. Chad Ford was not far behind DraftExpress. These two resources prove year after year that they are the most accurate.

Bleacher Report’s mock draft, prepared by Jonathan Wasserman, was also pretty spot on. I was delighted to come out in the top five this year. Here was my final mock draft.

Though there is no way to know exactly what will happen with the draft, especially because of unforeseen trades, there is a method to the madness.

Looks like you are right once again Jonathan. Remember that next year as you begin comparing ESPN’s and DraftExpress mock drafts.