1. Mario Hezonja, G, Croatia (Barcelona)
Hezonja is currently rated as the sixth-best prospect in the 2015 Draft Express rankings, and for good reason. He’s a wonderful offensive prospect, having the size and ability to be a fantastic NBA shooting guard. Hezonja can hit threes, slash to the basket off cuts or drives, and is a blooming passer; all of which are going to help him transition to the NBA. He’s particularly well suited as a wing in a fast-paced offense, making him a perfect fit with Brett Brown’s system.
Not to mention, he’s a scorer, through and through. Mario is also only 19 years old with plenty of developing still to do. The major issues with Hezonja so far have been playing time and attitiude. Hezonja barely played last season for Barcelona, stuck behind Juan Carlos Navarro and Alex Abrines at the shooting guard position. He also struggled to see playing time with Croatia at the FIBA World Cup, stuck behind the more polished Bogdan Bogdanovic and Luka Babic on the wing. This has resulted in Hezonja barely seeing any game action in the past year, which clouds the certainty of his potential. He also has had some clashes with teammates and been known as an arrogant guy, which could be bad for a young team such as Philadelphia.
The Sixers could definitely use Hezonja, as they are quite lacking in wing scoring at the moment, and Hezonja could grow into a scoring force with the right development. He also looks like he’ll fair pretty well as an on-ball defender, which is promising, and he’s versatile enough to play anywhere on the wing thanks to his size. If Hezonja actually sees playing time this season, his stock should match his lofty preseason rating in the draft boards, and Hezonja would make an awfully nice consolation prize if the Sixers aren’t drafting in the top two or three.