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NBA Draft Profile: Deandre Ayton

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Deandre Ayton

7-1, 250 lbs.

Arizona

Freshman

Nassau, Bahamas

The Arizona big man is the consensus No. 1 pick in the draft, and for good reason–the 7-foot-1, 250-pound Bahamian averaged 20 points and 11 rebounds per game while showing off impressive athleticism and even an ability to shoot with range.

Anyone grumbling about a big man going No. 1 in this era of basketball doesn’t understand what Ayton brings to the table. He is the perfect prototype to take advantage of courts spread wide by three point shooters, will dominate one-on-one matchups in the paint, and can run the floor with anyone. He’s got an NBA body already, and shows the potential to be a difference maker on both ends of the floor, much in the mold of a David Robinson (though that comp is made a little easier by the fact that he looks like The Admiral).

Jay Bilas has compared him to Wilt Chamberlain–which, although he’s got a Stilt-like figure, is a little aggressive. (Jay needs to turn down the Jeezy music).

Still, Ayton does have the potential to become a once-in-a-generation type big man, and possibly one who could lay the groundwork for how the position is played in today’s million-possessions, three-point happy, floor-spaced game.

He’d fit very well in Phoenix, where he’d make a terrific inside-outside threat with Devin Booker. Maybe the most impressive thing about him is his mentality. In a post-workout press conference in Phoenix, Ayton said he admires Kevin Garnett because of his intensity, and said he didn’t work out with any other teams. “I know I’m going No. 1,” he said:

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