Sunday, June 16, 2024

What We Realized About Some Draft Prospects


Kansas on the court in their win vs. Kentucky
Photograph through: Erin Hooley/AP

The Kentucky vs. Kansas sport was not a fully excellent sport however showcased fairly a number of potential first-round draft picks and even some second-round guys.

Right here’s a recap of how they performed and what to search for the remainder of the season from these guys.

Kentucky

Rob Dillingham

The 6-foot-3 level guard out of Time beyond regulation was completely spectacular on this sport off the bench. He overshadowed the guard play of the starters and would have been on the ground longer if wasn’t in foul bother for a lot of the second half. He completed with 18 factors on 4-of-5 taking pictures from past the arc to go along with two boards, three assists, and two steals. The offense flowed easily for Kentucky when he was on the ground and his protection was fairly stable when he wasn’t fouling the opposite crew. He can be somebody to keep watch over if he steals away the beginning job from DJ Wagner (who struggled mightily on this sport).

Reed Sheppard

Like Dillingham, Sheppard got here off the bench and made the offense run fairly easily when he was within the sport. He completed with 13 factors, 4 steals, and one help. He was spectacular on the defensive finish, sticking together with his man nicely and never fouling an excessive amount of. That shouldn’t come as a shock as his mother and father, Jeff and Stacey, had been Kentucky legends in their very own proper. He has phenomenal really feel for the sport and made the fitting play all evening exterior of two moments within the sport. He might turn into a shock one-and-done if he continues to play like this for the season.

Justin Edwards

The 6-foot-8 freshman is at or close to the highest of many draft boards proper now. This was not a sport that solidified his place, nonetheless. He was invisible for a lot of the sport and completed with just one level on six missed pictures. Edwards didn’t make any main errors however didn’t go away the sort of mark on the sport {that a} participant of his caliber is able to leaving, particularly in a sport of that magnitude. He clearly has a methods to go, however did discover methods to make an affect defensively. As soon as his shot begins falling, he ought to discover himself sitting atop extra draft boards.

DJ Wagner

The freshman level guard struggled on this sport. He couldn’t appear to beat his defender off the dribble. Wagner wasn’t actually discovering teammates and didn’t end on the rim nicely. He went 1-of-12 on his taking pictures and made two of his 4 free throws. One good signal is that he didn’t have any turnovers within the sport. Nonetheless, he should determine how one can beat even higher defenders than Dejuan Harris — an All-Huge 12 defender in his personal proper — down the road.

Kansas

Hunter Dickinson

The 7-footer had the fortune of taking part in in opposition to a Kentucky crew that didn’t have any of its personal 7-footers accessible. All three had been sidelined with accidents. That allowed him to feast for 27 factors and 21 rebounds. It was the primary time since 2003 {that a} Kansas participant had recorded a 20-20 sport in opposition to a top-25 opponent. The participant in 2003? Nick Collison. Dickinson sealed nicely, grabbed some offensive rebounds for robust putbacks, and confirmed why he was such a coveted seize within the switch portal. One of many few flaws that’s simply considered for Dickinson is his lack of foot velocity and the way that hampers him as a defender on the subsequent degree.

Kevin McCullar

This was a traditional McCullar sport. He didn’t shoot the ball significantly nicely (3-of-11 from the ground and 0-of-3 from past the arc), however he nonetheless ended up with a triple-double. McCullar discovered his teammates in transition, set them up extremely nicely within the halfcourt, and performed solidly for his whole time on the court docket. He’s seeking to take a Jalen Wilson-like leap himself this 12 months as he turns into the main focus of the backcourt for this Kansas crew. This was definitely a great begin.

Keep tuned for extra faculty basketball protection on Challenge Spurs.

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