NBA Draft Sleepers
*Photo via AP
With the draft tonight and the top draftees dominating the headlines (well deserved) watch out for some sleepers who can make a "BIG" impact.
Willie Cauley-Stein isn’t technically a sleeper , but he is falling down draft boards so I feel he fits here. Cauley-Stein brings rare, "elite" defensive versatility. He contested 86 percent of his opponents shots after switching on a pick and roll, and an astounding 95 percent when in a one-on-one situation. His defensive versatility is characterized by the ability to be a dominant rim protector and defend the perimeter( http://es.pn/1SGrKEj).The former reigning SEC Defensive Player of the Year will be projected as a top 15 pick in this year’s draft. Mock drafts have Stein being drafted to the Pacers which should help bolster their defense, especially with Roy Hibbert (If he stays) and Paul George .Cauley-Stein will serve a large role immediately anywhere he lands.
Some deeper sleepers I like are Rakeem Christmas and Cliff Alexander.
Now Alexander followers were a little disappointed after his freshman year. The young freshman coming in was projected as the number four player in the nation. Kansas Jayhawk fans were thrilled when he was coming to Kansas after 2014 NBA first round picks, Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid had left.
Alexander however had a rough season on and off the court. He dealt with injuries and family issues. but he still has a lot of potential (http://bit.ly/1RxzPsn). He is still only 19 years old and in only 17 minutes per game he averaged seven points, five rebounds, and one block per game. He would fit perfectly for the Memphis Grizzlies, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, Oklahoma City Thunder, Dallas Mavericks in my opinion. Look for Alexander to grow more in the league and serve as an effective role player. NBA seasons.
Rakeem Christmas is coming off his best season yet. As a senior, he posted career numbers in rebounds, assist, points per game, and blocks per game. He has improved free-throw shooting tremendously since his freshmen year and has been averaging 71 percent.(http://bit.ly/1BNDMYu).
Another popular name will be Montrezl Harrell. Harrell the captain for the "Louisville Cardinals" has made a name for himself. His athletic ability, quickness, and unique size has elevated his value in this draft. As a junior, he averaged 16 points per game, nine rebounds per game, one block per game, and one steal per game. His game reminds me of a more athletic Dejuan Blair with a stat line of a Draymond Green. Still Harrell has much to prove in the NBA.