PHOENIX SUNS

USC’s Isaiah Collier picked by Suns in O’Connor’s NBA mock draft

Jun 5, 2024, 7:55 AM | Updated: 9:39 am

The Phoenix Suns could solve their point guard problem in the 2024 NBA Draft, and The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor projects them to do just that in his latest mock with the Suns taking freshman point guard Isaiah Collier out of USC at No. 22.

In one season with the Trojans, the 6-foot-5 Collier averaged 16.3 points, 4.3 assists, 2.9 rebounds and 1.5 steals.

Given the Suns’ lack of a true point guard last season, Collier could change that by bringing his size, handles and physical play to the team, according to O’Connor.

There probably isn’t a better landing spot for Collier than the Suns, even though ending up here would necessitate falling in the draft. Collier’s downhill attacking ability would flourish alongside Phoenix’s spacing.

While Collier presents a position of need, the one knock on him is his sometimes reckless passing leading to turnovers. In his lone season at USC he averaged 3.3 turnovers per game.

Bringing in a younger, mistake-prone prospect wouldn’t necessarily alleviate Phoenix’s biggest issue last season as a top-five team in highest turnover rate. From O’Connor’s scouting report:

Daredevil playmaker who needs to cut down on reckless mistakes without removing the spirit that makes him so dynamic. With the way he throws the ball into traffic, sometimes it’s as if he assumes defenders can’t see.

O’Connor suggests that Collier needs to play a more composed and controlled style. He’s capable, and O’Connor brings up a seven-assist, zero-turnover performance on Jan. 3 against California as an example.

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