2022 NBA Draft mock #10: New Orleans Pelicans: Jaden Ivey
*Pelicans owe pick to Charlotte if it falls outside the lottery
Ivey is entering his sophomore season at Purdue. The 6’4 guard averaged 11.1 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 0.7 steals, and 0.7 blocks in 24.2 minutes per game as a freshman, but that does not tell the entire story because Ivey’s numbers improved dramatically as the season progressed.
The 19-year-old was a key piece of Team USA’s gold-medal winning squad at the FIBA Under-19 World Cup where he averaged 12.3 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.6 steals, and 0.7 blocks in 16.5 minutes per game. Ivey made the All-Tournament team and is hoping to use it as a springboard for a dominant sophomore season at Purdue.
The 19-year-old is a bucket getter with elite quickness, but his jump shot is a work-in-progress. He shot just 25.8 percent from 3-point range last season. If he improves it to 35 percent, Ivey could go in the top five. He made significant strides in the last year, and fans should expect another step forward this season.
The Pelicans added Devonte Graham, but they are still searching for their long-term starter at point guard to pair with Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram. Jaden Ivey could be that player if New Orleans misses the playoffs again this season.