NBA Draft Rumors 2014: Kansas Jayhawks Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid Leaving After NCAA Tournament Loss? Celtics, Lakers, Sixers Lottery Targets

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Mar 24, 2014 12:05 PM EDT
Kansas Jayhawks guard Andrew Wiggins
Kansas Jayhawks guard Andrew Wiggins (22) reacts against the Stanford Cardinal during the second half in the third round of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship at Scottrade Center. (Photo : Reuters) "

Heading into the NBA Draft this year, many felt that Andrew Wiggins would easily be the number one overall pick and now that the Kansas Jayhawks have lost in the NCAA tournament, the freshman star and Joel Embiid have big decisions to make, as teams like the Boston Celtics, LA Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks may see both as targets in the draft lottery.

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Jabari Parker from Duke along with Wiggins, Julius Randle from Kentucky and Embiid have been looked at as some of the picks that could go in the top five or 10 if they declare for the draft and their decisions likely will come sooner rather than later. Randle is still alive in the tournament, but Parker and Duke lost in the second round to Mercer, while Wiggins had a rough game as Kansas lost to Stanford. Embiid did not get a chance to play in the tournament after being injured and now he too will have to decide what the next stage of his career will be.

Wiggins led the Jayhawks in scoring this season with 17 points while shooting .448 percent from the field, but if this weekend was his final performance, it was nothing to write home about. Wiggins had a tough day against Stanford and while he played in 34 minutes of the game, he only ended up with four points on night and made one of six shots and now some have speculated that could hurt his draft stock, but he still could end up being a top five pick. Wiggins had some impressive performances this year, including putting in over 40 points against West Virginia and now he must decide whether another year at Kansas is worth it for bypassing the NBA.

Around the league many have pegged the Sixers, Magic and Bucks as "tankers" trying to get the number one pick because of the possibility of Parker and Wiggins coming out, but after their early losses in the tournament, there is a chance that one of both players could remain in school for another season. Early reports have Parker leaning towards staying another year at Duke, while the disappointment of losing for Kansas could keep Wiggins in a Jayhawks uniform as well.

The lottery should be very interesting this season, as the Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers, Orlando Magic, Milwaukee Bucks, Utah Jazz, Sacramento Kings and Detroit Pistons all could have potential shots at landing the number one pick. Right now the Bucks, Sixers and Magic have the worst records in the league and that means they will have the most balls in play for the lottery.

Wiggins is just 19 years old and has plenty of time to develop and if he comes out, teams will have to decide whether he is worth taking number one overall over players like Parker, Randle and Marcus Smart if they all come out this season. Parker wasn't all that great either in his tournament debut with just 14 points on 4 of 14 shooting and while he grabbed seven rebounds, it wasn't enough to get past Mercer and that could knock him down a bit as well. Either way, the top of the draft could be more stacked than it has been in years and that could make for some drama with the number one pick this season. 

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