D.A.'s Early Winners And Losers Of The 2018 NBA Draft

D.A. sees Luka Doncic as a clear winner from the NBA Draft. Michael Porter Jr. wasn't as fortunate.

Damon Amendolara
June 22, 2018 - 11:35 am

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Winners

Marvin Bagley: The destination might be riddled with lost careers and sunken stardom, but at least one NBA legend thinks he's slated to be the best player in this draft. I spoke to Dan Majerle, who told me as coach at Grand Canyon, he's worked closely with Bagley and believes he's a budding superstar. 

Luka Doncic: The Slovenian prodigy lands in a city that adores and embraces the greatest European product ever, Dirk Nowitzki. Doncic has the swagger and comfort to shine in the NBA, and he's now in the perfect city to carry the torch from Dirk, not to mention be mentored by him. 

Lonnie Walker: If there's a place where young talent maximizes its potential, it's San Antonio. If, as expected, the Spurs are forced to trade Kawhi Leonard, Walker could find himself as a centerpiece of a winning organization. 

Adrian Wojnarowski: Rarely does a reporter announcing picks during the draft become the trending topic, but Woj's tongue-in-cheek barbs in reporting (but not reporting) the selections had the Twitter chamber buzzing. 

Losers

Knicks fans: It's been a long, depressing slog of two decades, so they're looking for things to rely on. Kevin Knox is not one of those things. The Kentucky small forward has potential, but he's also far from a sure bet. And Knicks fans want winning lottery tickets, even if the payout is a little less. 

Michael Porter Jr: The Mizzou one-and-done took a lot of heat this week after his comments on my show. Sure, comparing yourself to Durant and Giannis looks arrogant. But I'm sure his agent didn't make him shy away from showing confidence. The problem is 13 teams didn't trust his back, sliding him all the way to the Nuggets. 

Pelicans: Without a first-round pick, New Orleans lost a chance to help surround Anthony Davis with more talent. There's no guarantee they bring back Boogie, and with how AD has become one of the most dominant players in the league, every chance to add to his supporting cast is an important one (especially at a cheap price). 

Viewers: We were all hoping for a diabolical, combustible, wacky draft night where major players like Kawhi could be traded, or teams swung bold moves to reshape their rosters in the Summer of LeBron III. But that blockbuster never came, meaning the real drama will be on July 1st, when free agency opens. 

Damon Amendolara, known by his fans as D.A., hosts “The D.A. Show,” from 9:00AM-12:00PM, ET, across the country on the nation’s largest 24/7 major-market radio network. “The D.A. Show” is known for its unique perspective on sports, tongue-in-cheek sense of humor, colorful listener interaction, and candid interviews with athletes and coaches. Amendolara also appears regularly on NFL Network as part of the “NFL Top 10” documentary film series, CBS television and SNY TV. He is a Syracuse University grad and native of Warwick, N.Y.