Pistons Palace NBA mock draft post lottery

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9. Charlotte Hornets

Aaron Gordon, PF, Arizona

With the pick they got from Detroit, Charlotte is really looking to get better in any way possible. They’ll most likely lose Josh McRoberts to free agency, so upgrading power forward makes a lot of sense, even though they drafted Cody Zeller with their top five pick in last year’s draft.

Mar 29, 2014; Anaheim, CA, USA; Arizona Wildcats forward Aaron Gordon (11) dribbles against Wisconsin Badgers forward Frank Kaminsky (44) during the second half in the finals of the west regional of the 2014 NCAA Mens Basketball Championship tournament at Honda Center. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Gordon has already been compared to Blake Griffin because of his athletic ability, and would pair up nicely with Al Jefferson inside. Like we mentioned in our pre lottery mock draft, the verdict is still out on if he is going to be a Griffin like talent or if he will be more like fellow Arizona Wildcat Derek Williams. Williams flashed a ton of athletic ability, but it never translated to the NBA game.

He’s flashy, but really has a good grasp on basketball intangibles. Especially on defense, where Gordon lead the country in defensive win shares for freshman.

He had just as much importance on the defensive floor this season as on the ball mastermind Aaron Craft of Ohio State.

The fact that he plays hard, is a defensive beast, and a good teammate gives you an outlook on his offensive game. It’s solid, but not there yet. Given the right opportunity, and he could flourish into a top forward in this league.

The Hornets have to like his versatility too. It allows them to go big with Gordon at small forward and really gives them three elite defenders in Gordon, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Gerald Henderson.