Bucks leaning towards Embiid if they win draft lottery

  • Jason Whitney

Joel Embiid may be the first pick in this year’s NBA Draft

The Milwaukee Bucks are having a terrible first half of the NBA season with just nine wins to their name. The good news however, is that there are only 30 games left in the regular season before the Bucks can start to plan for the NBA Draft. And with only nine wins thus far, there is a great chance of the Bucks securing the number one overall pick in the draft. This is said to be one of the deepest drafts in years and the Bucks could land a future star that the franchise has been thirsty for. The popular choice for the number one pick has been Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker. But now there is potentially a new leader in the clubhouse and that is 7-foot center, Joel Embiid.

Via ESPN:

Andrew Wiggins was the front-runner entering the season, but I cautioned people that there was a good chance he wouldn’t end up going No. 1 come June.

 Wiggins is still in the mix for the top spot, but after talking to numerous NBA executives and general managers, it’s his teammate — skilled 7-footer Joel Embiid — who has surged to the front. In fact, Wiggins could slide all the way down to No. 3.

Bucks GM John Hammond will choose the player he thinks has the best chance of being a star. Right now it’s a three-man race, but sources indicate Hammond loves the skill, size and rapid progression of Embiid. The Cameroon native is new to the game and has tremendous upside. Embiid can help the Bucks on both ends of the court, and while he recently told ESPN.com he might return to school, most feel that he’ll be in June’s draft.

If the Bucks were to draft Embiid, that could create a logjam with players like Zaza PachuliaLarry Sanders and John Henson already on the roster. The three centers are currently sharing minutes at the center position this season and they are all coming back next season – unless the Bucks were to trade one of them. In an era where many teams are playing small ball, the 7-foot Embiid, could become a dominant difference maker for a young team like the Bucks. However, the draft is many months away and the Bucks still have some losing to do before they can begin to think about next year.

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