NBA Draft: Wiggins, 2014 class is worth the wait

NBA Draft: Wiggins, 2014 class is worth the wait
May 13, 2013, 4:30 pm
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If the 2013 NBA Draft class were an old school sitcom character, Jan Brady is the obvious fit. Why? Because based on how much scouts and analysts are drooling over the players expected to turn pro next year, 2014 is clearly a Marcia, Marcia, Marcia situation.

The best of the next year's bunch is Andrew Wiggins, considered by some as the top prospect since LeBron James. Granted, the 6-foot-8 forward hasn't even selected a college yet - though that to-do list box will be checked off around 12:15 on Tuesday - let alone announced he is turning pro after his freshman year. Florida State and Kansas are considered the primary front-runners to land Wiggins for at least one season, followed by Kentucky and North Carolina. For some of the aforementioned gushing over Wiggins, read this (plus video), this or this.

Because Wiggins is the rare prospect human considered in the same freaky athletic universe as James, there is no doubt he would be the No. 1 selection if eligible for the June 27 draft. What makes the incoming high school class so special in the eyes of talent evaluators is that in terms of being a special talent, Wiggins is not alone.

Jabari Parker, compared in some circles to Carmelo Anthony, dominated recruiting headlines last year before the Chicago native announced he was taking his small forward talents to Duke. Julius Randle, behind only Wiggins and Parker on ESPN's 2013 freshman class list, is often compared to Billy Owens (in terms of high school prospects headed to college, that's a huge compliment).

The power forward is headed to Kentucky as is point guard Andrew Harrison (5)... and 6-foot-10 center Dakari Johnson (7), all potential overall No. 1 picks. (The Wildcats have EIGHT prospects entering school this year and several potential first rounders remained in Lexington, making Kentucky an obvious place to draft fans should watch all next season.) Forward Aaron Gordon (Arizona) rounds out the top-5 incoming high school players.

Seeing as the Wizards future includes the backcourt pair of John Wall and Bradley Beal, it's not a bad thing that frontcourt options dominate the early 2014 projections. Oklahoma State point Marcus Smart passed on the 2013 draft and is the only returning college player inside DraftExpress.com's 2014 mock draft.

Rather than hold an elaborate news conference, Wiggins will send a fax to the school of his choice. For that low-key approach alone, Wiggins is already one of my favorite players. In terms of the NBA game, we'll just have to wait a bit longer for him and others in the starry 2014 bunch.