7. Indiana Pacers choose Ausar Thompson
It feels like Amen Thompson will be a top-five pick on draft night, but his twin brother’s draft range is a bit wider. Ausar could go in the top five or still be on the board at pick ten. He does not have his brother’s playmaking chops, but drafting a 6’7 wing with a seven-foot wingspan will be of interest to nearly every team.
There are significant questions about his jumper. Thompson has shown improvement, but he struggled mightily against lesser competition in the Overtime Elite circuit. His mechanics have improved in the pre-draft process, and the 20-year-old has plenty of time to continue getting better, but what is his ceiling? Can he make even 33 percent from 3-point range in the NBA?
Thompson is an elite athlete that defends well on or off the ball. His size, length, strength, and high basketball IQ should help him make an impact on that end of the floor quickly, but what can he provide on offense? Having a wing that struggles to shoot can become problematic quickly.
Indiana may be the perfect fit for Ausar Thompson. Head coach Rick Carlisle has had success improving jump shots since his days with the Dallas Mavericks. Can he help get Ausar’s ironed out and make him one of the best players in this class? Indiana would certainly love to try.