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NBA Mock Draft: Detroit Pistons Select Zach Collins From Gonzaga

SB Nation's NBA Network conducted a mock draft with bloggers from each team site making their team’s picks. To continue the 2017 NBA Mock Draft, Detroit Bad Boys takes Zach Collins From Gonzaga

Gonzaga v North Carolina Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

NBA Mock Draft Pick #12: Zach Collins, Center, Gonzaga

SBNation’s Detroit Pistons’ blog Detroit Bad Boys explains their pick:

The Pistons are desperate for shooting and are looking for help on the wings. So I have them drafting … a center. Yes, the team just drafted big man Henry Ellenson last year, signed Andre Drummond to a massive extension, and have Jon Leuer, Boban Marjanovic and maybe even Aron Baynes set to return, But in today's NBA it is all about having versatile big men, and Zach Collins offers the holy trinity. He can rebound, protect the paint and guard in space on a switch, and he can score from the perimeter and finish at the rim. Watching Collins, I'm reminded of Cody Zeller in Charlotte (a secretly huge factor to their success) and also Antonio McDyess, who was a fan favorite in Detroit for years. Collins was not only perhaps the best rim protector in college basketball last year, but he also was pretty brilliant with his back to the basket, scoring more than 1.0 points per possession on post ups on both the left and right block. He also has a good looking jumper and hit 47 percent of his limited 3-point attempts. Whether he is an Andre Drummond replacement, his right-hand man or a super effective bench weapon remains to be seen. The Pistons must draft the best player available, and that makes this choice easy – Collins all the way.

Ridiculous Upside Analysis

I honestly feel like the crew at Detroit Bad Boys were in a weird predicament with this pick as Donovan Mitchell would’ve been a perfect pick for what the Pistons needed. However, he was just selected by the Charlotte Hornets. However, Zach Collins isn’t an awful consolation prize as he stands as a pretty versatile defensive big that can stick with cutting guards in pick-and-rolls or just stay inside against bigs. That versatility was a huge part behind him averaging 4.1 blocks per 40 minutes, the best average among 2017 NBA Draft prospects.

Perhaps more important than that is how Collins showed flashes of being a perimeter shooter. While he only had 21 shots from beyond the arc, Collins hit 47% of those perimeter attempts. Although that’s a ridiculously small sample size, it’s a sign that he has some sort of potential in that area.


2. Los Angeles Lakers - LONZO BALL, UCLA

3. Philadelphia 76ers - JOSH JACKSON, KANSAS


5. Sacramento Kings - DE’AARON FOX, KENTUCKY

6. Orlando Magic - JAYSON TATUM, DUKE

7. Minnesota Timberwolves - MALIK MONK, KENTUCKY


9. Dallas Mavericks - DENNIS SMITH, NC STATE

10. Sacramento Kings - LAURI MARKKANEN, ARIZONA


12. Detroit Pistons - ZACH COLLINS, GONZAGA

13. Denver Nuggets -

14. Miami Heat -

15. Portland Trail Blazers -

16. Chicago Bulls -

17. Milwaukee Bucks -

18. Indiana Pacers -

19. Atlanta Hawks -

20. Portland Trail Blazers -

21. Oklahoma City Thunder -

22. Brooklyn Nets -

23. Toronto Raptors -

24. Utah Jazz -

25. Orlando Magic -

26. Portland Trail Blazers -

27. Brooklyn Nets -

28. Los Angeles Lakers -

29. San Antonio Spurs -

30. Utah Jazz -