Vaught’s note: Jessica Jones doesn’t pretend to be a basketball expert, but she is a die-hard Kentucky fan who certainly knows her basketball. She’s a vaughtsviews.com contributor and done her homework to provide her insights on the upcoming NBA Draft. This is part one of a four-part series on UK players hoping to be drafted June 23.
By JESSICA JONES
Kentucky has four young men who have potential to be drafted in the 2016 NBA draft: Jamal Murray, Skal Labissiere, Tyler Ulis, and Alex Poythress. All four have been participating in pre-draft workouts. John Calipari thinks the three early entrants will all be lottery picks. Here’s a look at how they may fair in this month’s draft:
Outlook: Alex wasn’t invited to the combine and had some lingering knee trouble. He has worked out for some teams and seems to be getting some really positive feedback. I don’t think there’s any scenario that gets Alex into the first round but I think he can make a roster with the right second round pick or finding a summer league team if he goes undrafted.
That I know of, Alex has worked out with Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Milwaukee, and Phoenix. He also has a workout lined up with the Clippers. The Clippers, the Lakers, Milwaukee, and Phoenix all hold picks in the 30s. NBA draft analyst Chad Ford has Alex listed in the 50s. Philadelphia holds the 24th and 26th picks but no second round picks. It’s possible they’re considering trading down and taking Alex later. I’m really happy for Alex and hope he finds a spot on an NBA roster later this summer.
Best Fit: I think Alex best fits with Phoenix. They’re in need of some frontcourt players. Plus could you imagine a Phoenix Suns team with Alex, Skal, Archie, Eric, Devin, and Brandon? That would be something else. I might be dreaming a little here but that would sure be fun. The “Kentucky Suns” would no doubt be a favorite in the Bluegrass. Alex would also do well somewhere that he has an opportunity to learn under some established guys. I’m definitely interested to see where Alex ends up. The Suns will also likely fill their needs with their 4th and 13ths picks so I don’t think it’s likely Alex ends up there but it’s nice to dream for a moment.
Prediction: 38 Milwaukee Bucks (predicting this pick will be traded also) This was the hardest pick for me because really I’m not sure where he’s headed, no idea. The fact that he has worked out for several teams with picks in the 30s does tell me there’s interest there though. So I’ll say he’s going in the late 30s to the Bucks but they’ll trade the draft rights to someone else.
Next: Tyler Ulis.