Nikola Jokic, Draymond Green headline best second round picks in NBA Draft history

A lot of attention is paid to the NBA Draft Lottery every year.

There’s a good reason for that — the best prospects in the class are usually those who hear their name early — but that doesn’t mean talent can’t be found elsewhere in the draft.

The second round of the draft even has a rich history of spawning high-profile Roleplayers, Starters, All-Stars, and in one particular case, since the merger, a multiple MVP.

From Maurice Cheeks to Jalen Brunson, here are some notable second-round picks from the last 40+ years.

MORE: Nikola Jokic, a Taco Bell commercial and rise to league MVP

Notable Active NBA 2nd Round Draft Picks

Lou Williams

Williams is in talks for becoming the greatest sixth man of all time. He has won three sixth man of the year awards in his career, tying him with Jamal Crawford for the most in NBA history.

PJ Tucker

There’s a reason Tucker bounces from contender to contender. Not only has he established himself as a lockdown defender, but he’s also a capable 3-point shooter, having hit 36.4 percent of his long-range attempts in his career.

Draymond Green

One of the greatest and most influential defensemen of all time, Green has earned a career Defensive Player of the Year award and seven All-Defensive selections. He has played key roles in each of Golden State’s four championships.

Chris Middleton

Middleton is one of the smoothest scorers in the NBA today. He was named an All-Star three times in his career and was Milwaukee’s second-top scorer on his championship run in 2021.

Nikola Jokić

If he isn’t already, Jokic will likely stand as the best second-round pick of all time when all is said and done. In seven seasons, he has already won four All-Star selections, four All-NBA selections, and back-to-back MVP honors.

Malcolm Brogdon

Brogdon made history as a rookie, becoming the lowest draft pick since the merger to win Rookie of the Year. He has averaged 20.4 points and 5.9 assists per game over the past two seasons.

Jalen Brunson

Brunson has had the best season of his career. After averaging a career-best 16.3 points per game during the regular season, he increased his pointing average to 21.6 points per game in the Mavericks’ run to the Western Conference Finals.

Manu Ginobili, Tim Duncan, Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan

Notable NBA second-round draft picks of all time

Alongside the likes of Jokic, Green and Middleton, soon-to-be Hall of Famer Manu Ginobili was a second-round pick, as was three-time All-Star Gilbert Arenas and now nine-time champion Steve Kerr.

Notable second-round NBA draft picks since merger (1976)
player draft Choose
Dennis Johnson 1976 29
Alex English 1976 23
Moritz cheeks 1978 36
Rick Mahon 1980 35
Danny Aige 1981 31
Doc Rivers 1983 31
Jerome Kersey 1984 46
mark price 1986 25
Dennis Rodman 1986 27
Nate McMillan 1986 30
Jeff Hornacek 1986 46
Steve Kerr 1988 50
Clifford Robinson 1989 36
Tony Kukoc 1990 29
Anthony Davis 1990 45
PJ Brown 1992 29
Nick Van Exel 1993 37
Stephen Jackson 1997 42
Rashard Lewis 1998 32
Manu Ginobili 1999 57
Michael Redd 2000 43
Gilbert Arenas 2001 31
Carlos Boozer 2002 35
Mo Williams 2003 47
Kyle Korver 2003 51
Trevor Ariza 2004 43
Lou Williams 2005 45
PJ Tucker 2006 35
Paul Millsap 2006 47
Marc Gasoline 2007 48
DeAndre Jordan 2008 35
Goran Dragic 2008 45
Patrick Beverly 2009 42
Danny Green 2009 46
Patty Mills 2009 55
Hassan Whiteside 2010 33
Isaiah Thomas 2011 60
Jae Crowder 2012 34
Draymond Green 2012 35
Chris Middleton 2012 39
Straw Grant 2014 39
Nikola Jokić 2014 41
Montrezl Harrell 2015 32
Norman Powell 2015 46
Malcolm Brogdon 2016 36
Dillon Brooks 2017 45
Jalen Brunson 2018 33

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