The wait is nearly over. The NBA Draft is just days away, but many prospects still do not know if their name will be called on June 23. The NBA Draft Combine wrapped up on May 22, and a number of players saw their stock rise or fall depending on their measurements, as well as how they played. Prospects also have conducted multiple interviews and workouts with individual teams, and that process will continue into this week. With that said, let’s see who is rising and falling in the latest Draft Stock Watch.
Jalen Williams, G, Santa Clara
Williams has spent the last three years at Santa Clara, where he’s averaged 12.6 points per game for his career. However, this past year, the 21-year-old had a breakout season, shooting 51 percent from the floor, 40 percent from deep, and 81 percent from the free-throw line, while averaging 18 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game, all of which led to him receiving a first-team All-WCC selection.
At the NBA Combine, Williams measured at 6’5.75” in shoes, with a spectacular 7’2.25” wingspan, which was the longest of any guard at the NBA Combine. He also tested well athletically, with a 33.5-inch standing vertical, tied for the highest of any guard, and a 39-inch max vertical, which ranked third among guards.
Williams only participated in one scrimmage game, but that was more than enough to show his all-around game and versatility on the offensive side of the ball. He scored 11 points in 22 minutes of action, making five of eight from the field, including one of two from behind the arc.
Williams was probably the biggest winner from the NBA Combine. Heading into the event, he was seen as a second-round pick, but now he is seen as a potential top-20 selection. The Atlanta Hawks, who own the 16th overall pick, and the Minnesota Timberwolves, who own the 19th pick, have worked out the Santa Clara guard ahead of the draft.
We recently interviewed Jalen on the HP Podcast (S1-E15), and below is a clip from that show, with highlights.
Andrew Nembhard, G, Gonzaga
Nembhard spent four years in college, two seasons with Florida and two seasons with Gonzaga. In his senior season at Gonzaga, he averaged 11.8 points and 5.8 assists per game, shooting 45.2% from the field and 38.3% from three. The point guard was awarded All-WCC honors twice at Gonzaga and won the WCC tournament MVP this past season.
Best known for his ability to set up his teammates, Nembhard tested well in terms of quickness at the NBA Combine, ranking first in lane agility and fourth in the shuttle run amongst guards. He also measured at 6’4.50” in shoes with a 6’5.75” wingspan. However, he really showed his value the most during his one scrimmage game at the Combine, tallying 22 points and 11 assists while shooting 10 of 18 from the field. The senior floor general displayed his ability to execute the pick-and-roll and find the open man, but the most impressive part of the game was his ability to score, especially for someone who is mainly known as a facilitator.
Nembhard was a huge winner at the combine. Early in the pre-draft process, he was seen as a player that could have gone undrafted, but now, he could go early in the second round, as teams in that draft range, such as the Raptors, Nuggets and Spurs, have worked him out.
Dereon Seabron, G, NC State
Seabron, a sophomore guard out of NC State, is coming off a breakout season. He averaged 17.3 points and 8.3 rebounds, while shooting 49.1% from the field. The prospect received All-ACC honors and won the ACC’s Most Improved Player award. He also earned himself an invite to the NBA Combine.
At the combine, Seabron measured at 6’5.75” in shoes, with a 6’8.75” wingspan, and performed very well in the drills, including a fantastic sprint time of 3.12. However, it was during the scrimmage games when he really improved his draft stock. He scored 32 points in 52 minutes of play, while shooting 61 percent from the field. Seabron’s combination of speed and quickness were on full display. As he did all season, he showed that he is one of the top guards in the country in terms of attacking the rim, featuring an explosive first step and fearlessness in the paint. The main concern with the youngster’s game is his inconsistency from deep, but he did shoot well at the individual drills at the event.
Between Seabron’s great performance, as well as his teammate’s, Terquavion Smith, people were wondering why the NC State Wolfpack were not better this past year. Surprisingly, Smith decided to go back to school, but after receiving positive feedback from scouts, Seabron kept his name in the draft. Not long ago, it was questionable if Seabron would be drafted, but he appears to be in good shape now. In fact, a credible source with insider knowledge recently told Hoops Prospects that he expects the 22-year-old to be taken early in the second round. To date, Seabron has worked out for 15 NBA teams, and has a couple more scheduled.
Dyson Daniels, G, G-League Ignite
For a lot of the pre-draft process, Daniels has been seen as somewhat of a mystery prospect. He spent his past year with the G-League Ignite, but has played most of his basketball overseas in Australia. The 19-year-old averaged 11.6 points, 6.8 rebounds and 4.7 assists, in 29 total games with the Ignite.
As a prospect, he is similar to Oklahoma City guard Josh Giddey, who was taken sixth overall in last year’s draft. They’re both taller Australian point guards with a great handle and great passing ability, but struggle to shoot the basketball. However, Daniels is an exceptional, tenacious defender.
After an impressive year in the G-League and participating in all of the NBA Combine drills and measurements, Daniels has found himself as a near consensus top-10 prospect. Unlike his Ignite teammates MarJon Beauchamp and Jaden Hardy, Daniels displayed his competitive drive and work ethic by being an active combine participant. By the time of the draft, he will have participated in workouts with every team from picks four to 11. Although he is projected to go somewhere between seven and 11, I would not be surprised if he jumps into the five to six range, similar to Giddey, given his talent.
Patrick Baldwin Jr., F, Milwaukee
A former five-star recruit, Baldwin Jr. finds himself slipping on some draft boards. Although some boards still have him in the top-20 range, others have him falling into second round territory.
Despite having the choice of going to any major school, such as Duke, North Carolina and Kentucky, Baldwin Jr. decided to commit to Milwaukee in the Horizon conference to play for his father, who was the head coach of the Panthers at the time. In his freshman season there, he disappointed, averaging 12.1 points per game on just 34.4 percent from the field.
Despite a poor and injury-shortened freshman season, Baldwin Jr. still committed to the NBA draft and received an invite to the NBA Combine. He measured well, standing 6’9.25” in shoes, with a 7’1.75” wingspan. However, the prospect tested terribly in the athletic drills. He recorded a 23.5-inch standing vertical jump and a 26.5-inch max vertical leap. Both of those numbers ranked last at the combine. Baldwin Jr.’s max vertical leap was the fourth lowest since 2011 and was only better than Dakari Johnson, Nikola Vucevic and Dedric Lawson, who are all big men. His lack of athleticism could be a result of his injury history. Baldwin Jr. suffered a severe ankle injury in December of 2020, and the ankle never fully recovered during his time at Milwaukee. As of late, the 19-year-old has been saying he is healthy, but he appears to have clearly lost the edge athletically.
Once considered the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2021, Baldwin Jr. has had little go right for him over the past two years. I would be surprised if he snuck into the first round at this point, but some team might take a gamble on him.
Shaedon Sharpe, G, Kentucky
Sharpe is perhaps the biggest risk of any player in this draft class. He is a 6’5” wing who excels at creating his own shot. However, the questionable decision making regarding his college career could be a concern for NBA front offices.
Sharpe did not enroll in a college this past fall, but instead enrolled during the spring at Kentucky, where he was used as a practice player. After just one semester in college and zero games played, Sharpe declared for the NBA draft as a projected top-5 pick. His odd decision to not play collegiate basketball could be a concern for teams. Not only have teams not seen Sharpe play at the collegiate level, they may be concerned with his character. Teams may believe that he is avoiding playing against competition, banking that his high-school reputation is enough to earn him a lottery selection.
Based on the uncertainty surrounding Sharpe and a series of recent sub-par workouts, he could slip considerably in the draft. The Spurs, Thunder, Magic, Pistons, and Hornets are among the teams that he has worked for, and he will visit the Hawks on Monday. The draft range among those teams is No. 1 (Orlando) to No. 13 (Charlotte). The Thunder are a prime candidate to take a chance on the 19-year-old. OKC holds picks 2 and 12 in the draft, putting the club in a position to comfortably take a risk at No. 12. And Sharpe falling to 12 is becoming more and more realistic every day. To make things even more interesting, Sharpe reportedly canceled his pre-draft workout with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Pelicans have pick No. 8 in the draft and were a potential suitor for Sharpe.
Teams are intrigued by Sharpe’s athleticism and offensive talent, but with more questions than answers, general managers could avoid him on draft night. The youngster is possibly the biggest boom or bust prospect of the past few years, and it would not be surprising if he ends up hearing his name called later than expected.
Trevor Keels, G, Duke
Keels is a freshman out of Duke who averaged 11.5 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.7 assists for the Blue Devils this year. His combination of guard skills and defensive effort make him an exciting two-way prospect. The prospect did not play in any scrimmage games at the NBA Combine, but he did do agility tests and went through all the measurements, both of which were disappointing.
Keels measured in at 6’4.75” in shoes, with a 6’7.25” wingspan, but it was a different measurement that has front offices worried. He weighed in at 223.8 pounds with a shocking 13.5% body fat, making him the heaviest guard at the combine. Likely as a result of being heavy, he tested poorly athletically, which could dramatically affect his draft stock. Keels tested a 24.5-inch standing vertical jump and a 31-inch max vertical leap, both ranked last among guards. He also ranked last in the shuttle run with a time of 3.32 seconds.
Unless Keels has impressed during his team workouts, it seems as if his stock will drop by a considerable margin. I’m not sure how far he will drop, but the once projected first-round pick could slip pretty far into the second round.
Ryan Rollins, G, Toledo
A first-team All-MAC selection this season, Rollins was a stat-sheet stuffer at Toledo, finishing in the top five of the conference for PER (24.7), win shares (5.8), and plus-minus (5.4). The sophomore excelled at executing the pick-and-roll, making mid-range shots, and attacking the basket, but struggled from beyond the arc and on the defensive end against mediocre competition.
At the NBA Combine, Rollins had a mostly positive experience, measuring with a plus-7 wingspan and posting a blistering sprint time of 3.07. In game action on Day 1, the 6-foot-3 guard displayed his speed plus wiggle and vertical pop, and he made five of his six two-point attempts. At the same time, he went 0-for-3 from deep, and committed four fouls and five turnovers in 27 minutes.
The concerns about Rollins coming into the event were his career 3-point shooting (31.7 percent) and his defense, and he did little to ease those concerns. He also did not play on the second day due to a hip injury, and there has been no significant news about him since. He did have a workout scheduled with the Pacers on June 6, but he was unable to attend. Predicted by some to be selected in the first round, Rollins now seems much more likely to go somewhere between 31 and 50.
Sources, Credits, and Acknowledgements
Statistics used in our scouting reports come from RealGM.com (international stats), Sports-Reference.com (NCAA stats), and Synergy Sports Technology (special analytics), Other outside sources are noted with links to the source. Click here to see the statistical abbreviation key.