With the tenth general choose within the 2022 NBA Draft, the Wizards might need to make a tough selection between two gamers on the identical place. We’re going by these choices in a sequence of articlespersevering with with two massive males who may very well be on the board at 10: Jalen Duren of Memphis and Duke’s Mark Williams.
Duren is barely 18 years previous however on no account appears or performs prefer it. He’s a strong athlete, cellular and with sufficient bounce to throw down lobs and block all types of pictures across the rim. Duren is large enough and powerful sufficient to the place there will not be a lot of an adjustment to the extra bodily and athletic competitors on the NBA degree. He is acquired an NBA prepared physique and would not seem to be the sort who will again away from the problem of dealing with older, extra polished gamers.
Duren’s sport may be very a lot centered within the paint. He’s an aggressive rim-runner, he rebounds and he blocks pictures (2.1 bpg at Memphis). He is additionally been praised for his screen-setting and, given he is constructed so robust, he’s most likely going to be a type of gamers nobody desires to run into blindly. Duren is not a unicorn by any means, as he didn’t try a single three in school and would not do a lot off the dribble, however with pick-and-rolls dominating NBA offenses, there’s all the time going to be room for a middle like Duren. In that sense, and since he is fast up and down the ground, he suits into the trendy NBA, 3-point shot or not.
The hope for any workforce drafting Duren could be that he fulfills that position properly initially and over time develops into one thing extra. Whereas he might not be as cellular as Bam Adebayo, or Onyeka Okongwu for that matter, Adebayo did not depart Kentucky because the tremendous versatile, do-it-all massive man he’s now. The Warmth noticed his potential his to be that participant and developed him into that position. Possibly an NBA workforce will see the identical upside for Duren.
Whereas Duren is the bodily power, Williams may be very tall and has nice size as a shot-blocker. And he is an excellent higher shot-blocker, the second-best on this draft class to Chet Holmgren, who was traditionally good in school defending the rim. Williams has Rudy Gobert-like dimensions at 7-foot-2 in footwear with a 9-foot-9 standing attain and a 7-foot-6 1/2 wingspan. That’s going to make him an enormous even on an NBA ground and it is an ideal signal his shot-blocking his (2.8 bpg at Duke) will translate.
Williams may very well be an elite rim-protector on the subsequent degree whereas additionally providing some potential as a scorer. He additionally doesn’t have a fringe sport to talk of, however he is pretty agile ending across the basket. He is acquired a knack for getting the ball into the rim shortly off passes into the publish. Williams will most likely by no means method averaging 20 factors per sport, however like Gobert he may very well be a menace on that finish to an honest diploma.
Whichever workforce drafts Williams will accomplish that primarily for his protection. A great situation would see him common over two-plus blocks per sport in his prime whereas additionally reeling in double-digit rebounds. One good signal for his ceiling his could be his enchancment his as a shooter year-over-year at Duke. He shot 72.1% from the sphere final season and raised his free throw proportion to 72.7% from 53.7% the yr earlier than.
That is the hardest name of all of the Wizards Draft Selections we now have gone by as a result of each gamers deliver related attributes to the desk and since heart might be the Wizards’ least urgent want. Technically it’s a want as a result of they at the moment have a spot open behind Kristaps Porzingis and Daniel Gafford (Thomas Bryant is a free agent), however spending the tenth general choose to fill that position would imply they thought certainly one of these guys was the perfect participant out there by an excellent margin. It is attainable neither would get many minutes in any respect of their rookie season.
That mentioned, Duren is the higher match right here. Nearly as good as Williams may very well be as a rim-protector, Duren ‘s mobility and potential his as a screen-setter a minimum of leaves some risk he may play alongside Porzingis. And there additionally could also be a better ceiling for Duren than there’s Williams when it comes to two-way potential and flexibility. The mix of short-term match (type of) and long-term potential makes Duren a extra full package deal for the Wizards, given the place they’re and the path they’re heading.
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