#23: Nikola Mirotic
Nikola Mirotic is one of the most intriguing players in this draft class because his buyout with Real Madrid could keep him from entering the NBA for the next four years. With that said, Mirotic has tons of upside and some teams had him ranked as the top international player in this class, ahead of the likes of Jonas Valanciunas and Jan Vesely.
The Houston Rockets selected Mirotic with the 23rd overall pick, but they immediately dealt him to the Minnesota Timberwolves in a multi-player trade.
The Timberwolves sent Jonny Flynn and the 20th overall selection, Donatas Motiejunas, to Houston in exchange for Brad Miller, Mirotic and future first round selection.
Shortly after, Minnesota sent Mirotic to the Chicago Bulls in exchange for the 28th overall pick and 43rd selection. The Bulls wanted to move one of their late first round selections because they didn’t want to guarantee a rookie and take up a roster spot.
This allows Chicago to keep Mirotic overseas for four years and allow him to develop, while the Bulls continue to contend for a championship. It’s a low-risk, high-reward selection for Chicago.
Mirotic has a lot of potential and could be a difference maker for the Bulls when he comes to America in four years, when he’s 24 years old.