ARIZONA BASKETBALL

Bennedict Mathurin rising in ESPN NBA mock a week out from draft

Jun 19, 2022, 7:25 AM
Arizona guard Bennedict Mathurin (0) and center Christian Koloko (35) react at the end of overtime ...

Arizona guard Bennedict Mathurin (0) and center Christian Koloko (35) react at the end of overtime in a second-round NCAA college basketball tournament game against TCU, Sunday, March 20, 2022, in San Diego. Arizona won 85-80. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

(AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

Former Arizona Wildcat Bennedict Mathurin is quietly approaching the top-five of Jonathan Givony’s NBA mock draft released just more than a week before the draft.

Givony currently has Mathurin going to the Indiana Pacers, who hold the sixth pick in next week’s draft. The mock is made using intel from NBA evaluators.

Mathurin is drawing strong reviews on the private workout trail, excelling in competitive action, individual drills and interview sessions everywhere he’s visited thus far. An All-American who excels coming off screens and operating in the open court, Mathurin can play either wing spot and has plenty of upside to grow into at just 19 years old. He would give the Pacers a strong backcourt rotation with Malcolm BrogdonTyrese Haliburton and Chris Duarte. Many teams are kicking the tires on what it would take to acquire Brogdon or Myles Turner in a trade, but the asking price for both is said to be high.

At the collegiate level last year, Mathurin put up averages of 17.7 points, to go along with 5.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game for the Wildcats.

Mathurin was named a consensus Second Team All-American and the Pac-12 Player of the Year as a sophomore.

Mathurin had multiple breakout performances during the Wildcats’ run to the Sweet 16. This included a 27-point game against UCLA in the Pac-12 Championship game.

Mathurin was also exceptional in the Round of 32 against TCU in which he put up a game-high 30 points, leading Arizona to an overtime victory.

He is likely to be joined as a draft 2022 draft pick by fellow Wildcats Dalen Terry and Christian Koloko.

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