It’s officially time to start making your predictions and to weigh in for the 2018 NBA Draft with just 28 days until the annual player selection. So who is the NBA Draft’s prized prospect? Not just an ordinary basketball player, an athlete described as a physical freak: Deandre Ayton.
Besides he’s a beast offensively, impossible to guard because he’s with a freakish wingspan and standing 7-foot-1. Ayton is the total package in college basketball; he’s big, athletic, and very skilled. He will most likely be one of the three top picks in the NBA Draft.
But how did the super-prospect make it to this point? Let’s take a look.
Full Name: Deandre Ayton
Birthdate: July 23, 1998
Birth Place: Nassau, Bahamas
School: University of Arizona
As we all know, it’s a boy’s dream to wake up one day, and say, “I want to be in the NBA.” Well, what if I told you, Ayton was able to see the future as a child. And he was right on the money. But the craziest thing is that he didn’t even crave the NBA, he was looked for during a band practice at Bahamas Academy High School. Then? The first thing that drew the scouts to Ayton was that he looked like a giant. Just like that, he was leaving his hometown and finding a new home in San Diego, Calif.
Right, when enrolling at Balboa City School, he went straight to playing on the varsity team for two years. Better than that, he racked up double-doubles in 21 of 22 regular season games. That’s crazy. Then, out of the blue, he was transferred to Hillcrest Prep Academy in Phoenix, Arizona for two more years. It was definitely worth it, though. As a player, he averaged 26 points and 15 rebounds, and miraculously guided his team to a 33-6 record, for his last year of high school.
Afterward, he was ready for the next big step in his life. College basketball.
Everyone watched Ayton take his explosiveness to the University of Arizona on Nov. 10, 2017. Most importantly, it was a day recorded in the history books — not only for him — but also for the school. His 19 points were the 7th most for a Freshman in a debut game.
A month later, he scored a season-high 29 points and 18 rebounds. The following year, in March, Ayton was named the Pac-12 Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
A Look Ahead
As we countdown until the 2018 NBA Draft, there’s one thing we already know, and that is Ayton has the best combination of size and skills. In addition, he is the most dominant physical presence in the sport. Last but least, I’m sure he was a thrill to watch, and I sure hope so. Why? Because you won’t see another center like him in college basketball for a while.