The Sports Xchange

By Tyler Jamieson, The Sports Xchange

2014 NBA Draft: Wiggins tops marquee SF talent pool

Led by The Sports Xchange's top-rated prospect, Kansas' Andrew Wiggins, the 2014 NBA Draft is loaded with big names at small forward. While Wiggins is in the hunt to be the No. 1 overall pick, several household names from marquee programs will also be vying to land in the lottery, including UCLA's Kyle Anderson (No. 12), Kentucky's James Young (17) and Duke's Rodney Hood (18).

The top small forward prospects in the 2014 NBA Draft:

1. (No. 1 overall) Andrew Wiggins, SG/SF, Fr., Kansas.

Overview: Had Wiggins been allowed to enter last year's draft he was widely considered to be the top pick. After a year at Kansas, he still has a shot at going No. 1 overall with Duke's Jabari Parker and Kansas teammate Joel Embiid also in the mix.

Analysis: Standing 6-feet-8 with a 7-foot wingspan, Wiggins has all the physical tools you could ask for in a wing player. He's an elite athlete who puts on a show in the open court and leaves Kansas after one year with an impressive 17.1 ppg and 5.9 rpg. His offensive game is still developing and he should only continue to improve.

2. (12) Kyle Anderson, SF, So., UCLA.

Overview: A unique 6-9 jack-of-all-trades type. Scouts love his ball handling and passing for his size. He could conceivably play three positions at the NBA level: PG, SG, SF.

Analysis: While small forward was Anderson's traditional position at UCLA, he spent a lot of time playing the point because of his deft passing. When he wasn't playing point guard, the Bruins were running their offense through Anderson to make sure he was a primary decision maker in half-court sets. Has the potential to be a walking mismatch for any opponent.

3. (17) James Young, SG/SF, Fr., Kentucky.

Overview: Highly touted 6-7 freshman's play during Kentucky's deep tournament run aided his decision to declare for the draft. Young could join teammate Julius Randle as a one-and-done who gets selected in the lottery.

Analysis: Still just 18 years old, a lot of what intrigues NBA people about Young's game is based on potential and he will need time to adjust to the NBA game. However, his ability to get to the basket and mid-range game, both showcased in coach John Calipari's offense, should translate well to the NBA.

4. (18) Rodney Hood, SF, So., Duke.

Overview: The 6-8 southpaw has the look of a prototypical NBA wing player. After transferring from Mississippi State, the athletic Hood had a short one-year stay at Duke.

Analysis: Hood is solid in all areas offensively; he's especially effective as a mid-range shooter with potential to hit the NBA three. His defensive ability is a bit of a concern, but he has shown the characteristics to be able to develop on that side of the floor as well.

5. (19) Jerami Grant, SF, So., Syracuse.

Overview: An intriguing athlete whose combination of size, quickness and explosiveness around the basket separates him from other wing players. After a so-so freshman season, Grant took a big stride maturity-wise last season.