The time has come.
Andrew Wiggins’ seemingly bulletproof draft stock has taken a small hit, and in a pool with standout talent, someone else was ready to capitalize.
Jabari Parker is our new No. 1 prospect—not just based on what he’s done so far compared to Wiggins but based on his long-term outlook as a potential NBA centerpiece.
Consider this more of a promotion for Parker than a demotion for Wiggins, who still offers No. 1 overall upside—just with a smaller chance of hitting it.
Parker isn’t the only one gunning for that top spot, as Kansas’ Joel Embiid has also made a strong case for No. 1.
If you ask me, this draft class appears as good as advertised. Regardless of how it plays out, the top five or six teams are going to land a sure-fire NBA stud.
*Draft order generated based on current standings.
1. Milwaukee Bucks: Jabari Parker, Duke, 6’8″, SF/PF, Fr.
Img Source: Grant Halverson/Getty Images
He’s earned it.
Jabari Parker has been the most impressive prospect in the country.
To start the year, Andrew Wiggins and his supporters have been leaning on his long-term potential. There’s no question it’s through the roof, but he seems a lot further from reaching his ceiling than Parker, who has the physical tools and a superior, more NBA-ready offensive game.
So far this year, we’ve seen Parker light up the perimeter (47 percent shooting from three), take over in the mid-range, fly in transition and control a game from the post, something he did in a win over Michigan.
A terrific passer and strong rebounder, he’s clearly the most complete prospect in the draft.
He’s averaging 22 points and 7.6 boards on 55 percent shooting as Duke’s go-to offensive weapon, something he projects as at the next level. We really haven’t seen Wiggins take on that type of role for Kansas, as he just doesn’t seem to possess those natural leadership skills.
Parker might not be able to match Wiggins’ athleticism, but it’s not like he’s a stiff out there. Compared to Wiggins, Parker offers similar superstar upside, only he’s a lot closer to getting there. The No. 1 pick might ultimately come down to the team that gets it, but with the way things are going, the odds appear to be shifting in Parker’s favour.
2014 NBA Mock Draft: Jabari Parker Overtakes Andrew Wiggins
Img Source: Jamie Squire/Getty Images
At some point, you just have to believe your eyes.
Andrew Wiggins isn’t the player Jabari Parker is at the moment. That could change 10 years from now, but would you be willing to risk a No. 1 pick on it with Parker on the board?
That’s a question general managers will have to ask themselves, as Wiggins’ lack of polish and assertiveness has hurt his image as a prospect.
His breakout 26-point game against Florida should come with a bit of an asterisk, as he went 14 straight minutes without a field goal.
The fact is, there are more questions surrounding Wiggins than Parker.
Wiggins still offers No. 1 overall upside. He’s obviously a one-of-a-kind athlete who can get to the rim unlike anyone else. But he just doesn’t have Parker’s complete game or intangibles.
Wiggins is going to be a fantastic NBA player one day. A probable All-Star. But right now, it looks like Parker has the ability to make a bigger impact on a franchise.
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