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NCAAB: 2016’s Top NBA Draft Prospects
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The 2016 NBA regular season is coming to a close. And for the non-playoff teams that means the start of NBA Draft conversation. So, who are some of the potential picks in the upcoming draft?
Here’s a breakdown of the top-ten prospects.
1. Ben Simmons – F, LSU
Simmons has certainly garnered himself a lot of negative press over the last month. However, that shouldn’t take away from his outstanding play. Simmons has arguably one the highest basketball IQ’s of any draft prospect in years. His passing ability is on par with some point guard prospects, let alone other big men. Simply put, he’s the best option in the 2016 Draft.
2. Brandon Ingram – G/F, Duke
Ingram also makes a case to be the top overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft. He has a much more refined shot than Simmons, and has an almost endless wingspan. Ingram possess all the attributes and intangibles scouts look for.
3. Kris Dunn – G, Providence
Dunn is college basketball’s best playmaker, and it’s not even close. He’s one of the Nation’s premier passers, and has the potential to make the All-NBA Defensive Team. At 6’4, Dunn has the height NBA teams look for in a guard. It’s hard to find a point guard that can score, pass, rebound and defend, making Dunn the whole package.
4. Dragan Bender – F, International
Bender is this year’s man of mystery. He’s not well known amongst the casual basketball fan. Teams will likely use Bender as a stretch big, as he can dominate the game with his post moves and a developing outside shot. A lot of comparisons can be made to Kristaps Porzingis.
However, Bender is the more athletic of the two, and will certainly be a top-five selection.
5. Jamal Murray – G, Kentucky
Murray is one of the more polarizing players. On one hand, he’s efficient at getting to the basket and dishing out the ball. On the other hand, Murray is one of the best shooters in the 2016 class. The biggest question with Murray is will he be a shooting guard or point guard at the pro level?
That’s what’s going to determine his ranking amongst the draft eligible players.
6. Henry Ellenson – F, Marquette
The best way to describe Ellenson is a younger Kevin Love. The Marquette freshman is exceptional around the basket, displaying a great touch and outstanding rebounding ability. He’s able to spread the floor and hit the three. If all develops, Ellenson could be the next great stretch forward in the NBA.
7. Jaylen Brown – F, California
Brown was one of the nation’s highest rated recruits in 2015. He didn’t disappoint during his freshman season at Cal. While he’s exceptional at getting to the basket, his jumpshot and three point game need some work. All the tools are there, but the team which selects him will need to be patient.
8. Jakob Poeltl – C, Utah
Poeltl could be the best defensive prospect in all of this year’s draft class. Many have compared him to former Utah star, Andrew Bogut, because of his excellent passing ability. Poeltl mainly does his work in the post, and can work the pick and roll effectively. A true big man is a lost art in today’s NBA.That’s why Poeltl is such an intriguing prospect.
9. Buddy Hield – G, Oklahoma
Even casual college basketball fans know about Buddy Hield. He’s neck and neck with Jamal Murray as the best scorer in this year’s draft class. Hield is an exceptional three point shooter, and gets to the rim with ease. The only reason Hield isn’t higher than a player like Murray is his age. Normally four-year college standouts don’t get the same draft love as the younger freshman, as many feel they don’t as much growth in their game.
10. Marquese Criss – F, Washington
Criss came out of nowhere to become one of collegiate basketball’s best freshman.
Standing at 6’9, Criss is one of the most athletic big men in this year’s class. He features an improving outside shot, and has the potential to be one of the most lethal shot blockers in all of basketball. He might not reach his ceiling for two or three years, but it’s only a matter of time before we see how good he can be.
Follow Daniel James Gentile on Twitter @dgentleman9288
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