Utah Jazz: Redrafting the 2017 Donovan Mitchell draft lottery

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Utah Jazz
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports) /

Drafting at the NBA level isn’t just an inexact science; it’s closer to astrology. With that said, the Utah Jazz read the stars brilliantly in the 2017 draft, selecting Donovan Mitchell with the 13th overall pick.

Trying to predict an NBA player’s potential is a task that NBA scouts have faced for decades. There are several factors involved in becoming an elite NBA player that aren’t immediately apparent in teenagers, such as maturity, durability, and both physical and on-court development. Sometimes, a 3-and-D wing develops ball-handling midway through his sophomore season, and suddenly his team has a future star.

Other times, a number one overall, jumbo sized point guard refuses to shoot 3s for five consecutive seasons, and his team is left wondering whether to trade him for pennies-on-the-dollar.

With so many unpredictable variables, teams can be afforded some leeway for gambling on ultimately unmet potential. Still, some of the choices made by teams other than the Utah Jazz in the 2017 draft were downright ugly.

The criteria in this exercise is a bit loose: we did look at Value Over Replacement Player (VORP) and Player Efficiency Rating (PER) but did not rely on any one metric to determine these rankings. After all, we’re not so far removed from the 2017 draft that these players’ potential should not factor into a redraft. Furthermore, variables like team context and role factor heavily into any metric, and these careers are too young to be fair game for anything resembling an objective ranking.

Having established that, here is the J-Notes’ 2017 redraft.