ESPN’s Schmitz: Two Arizona guards are top prospects for 2018 NBA Draft
Oct 31, 2017, 7:20 PM
Year after year, the Arizona men’s basketball program delivers NBA-ready players to the draft.
This year is no different.
In 2018, the Wildcats’ depth at guard could benefit NBA teams that need to bolster their backcourt.
ESPN writer Mike Schmitz says two Arizona guards — junior guard Allonzo Trier and freshman Brandon Randolph — are among the best college draft prospects at the shooting guard position. Both made his list of the 10 best college shooting guard draft prospects.
Schmitz says the both Arizona products are equipped to get NBA teams buckets down the line.
After missing the first half of last season due to ineligibility, Trier finished his sophomore year strong, averaging 21.6 points per-40 minutes in 18 games. The 21-year-old bucket-getter figures to be Arizona’s primary perimeter scorer, with freshman sensation Deandre Ayton manning the middle. Trier is a shot-maker with three-level scoring potential and deceptively powerful explosiveness once he’s able to get downhill. He draws fouls at a high rate and plays with extreme confidence. Scoring has never been the question for Trier, who was identified as a prospect as early as 13 years old.
Trier can help his stock with improved defensive chops and playmaking, according to Schmitz.
Ranked ahead of the junior is Randolph, who Schmitz calls one of the most talented guards in the class. The ESPN writer expects him to deliver in big games as a freshman and ranks him eighth on the list.
The 20-year-old Yonkers product averaged 24.9 points and 3.9 made 3s (39.5 percent) per-40 minutes on the Nike EYBL circuit last year and brings high-level shot-making and quick-twitch athleticism to Tucson. Randolph has microwave scoring potential, as he can get hot off the catch, pull up out of ball screens, sprint off of staggers and create space in isolation situations. Although very light at 183 pounds, Randolph is an explosive leaper and can use his athleticism and handle to get defenders leaning.