Will Justise Winslow defy the odds and become the first overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft? It’s a question that has been on the minds of many scouts and analysts as of late, as Winslow’s play during the NCAA Tournament has been nothing short of remarkable.
It has been widely thought since the conclusion of last year’s NBA Draft that Winslow’s teammate, Jahlil Okafor, would be the consensus top overall pick. However, the production from players like Ohio State guard, D’Angelo Russell and Kentucky center, Karl Anthony Towns have complicated things.
If Winslow is going to sneak into the conversation for top overall pick he can use his impressive late season stats as a reference point. He steamrolled through the NCAA Tournament, averaging 14.3 points and 9.3 rebounds, showing he could indeed come through in critical situations.
Standing 6’6 and weighing 221 lbs., Winslow already has an NBA body. He pairs that with a lengthy wingspan that enables him to defend multiple positions on the court. He was one of Duke’s better defenders on the season, especially during tournament play when he had three games of two or more blocks.
Winslow could use some refinement to his free-throw shooting, as he only shot 64 percent from the charity stripe during his freshman season. Most importantly, he could also stand to develop his jump shot.
Overall, Winslow is one of the strongest prospects the NBA has seen in years. Comparisons have ranged from Wilson Chandler to James Harden.
While players like Okafor, Russell and Towns all have standout qualities, Winslow is an all-around player that has all the tools to be an NBA All-Star. It just may take some time for everything to come together.