NBA Draft: 2019 Mock 2.0: If the Dallas Mavericks land in top 4
By Kohl Rast
The best center in this year’s draft is likely Jaxson Hayes from the University of Texas. Hayes was a little known player coming into this season but his size and agility have definitely helped him get noticed by many NBA scouts. He was able to help an underperforming Texas team win the NIT this year.
The Hornets could really use a skilled big man, especially if they are hoping to keep Kemba Walker around for another contract. As of now, the team has some good pieces but is definitely missing a solid player in the middle. Hayes would add a whole new dynamic to the team with his ability to run the court and play above the rim on both ends.
Obviously Hayes’ specialty in the league is going to be rim-running. Hayes went from a relatively unknown player to a guy that is being recognized for his tremendous offensive and defensive upside. He is extremely coordinated for a near 7-footer and his age is a big plus to whoever does pick him. He handles the ball well and has shown some ability to shoot around the rim. He was also one of the best shot blockers in the nation.
There is no outside shot being attempted by Hayes at this time. He is strictly an around the rim player currently, but that does not mean a shot can’t develop. He has not been a reliable rebounder this year either, something that is a little concerning and will need to be addressed before he can be plugged into a starting lineup in the NBA.
Player Comparison: Jarrett Allen
I think that Hayes and Allen compare well as they are both great players above the rim on both sides. Allen has become one of the best shot blockers in the league and moves the court really well. Those would be the areas that Hayes would like to flourish in right off the bat in his rookie season.
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