James Wiseman’s collegiate career was cut short by the NCAA, but the big man has the skills to become a quality big in the NBA for years to come.
Centers may not be the most coveted players in the NBA any longer, but that won’t stop James Wiseman from being a top NBA Draft pick. The combination of his massive frame and athleticism will convince a team to spend a high pick on his services.
Wiseman certainly looks like an elite prospect when he takes the court. He’s a legitimate 7-footer who moves more like a wing than a traditional big man. When he’s locked in, he can be dominant at the offensive end of the floor.
The challenge is that Wiseman doesn’t always play with maximum intensity. His tendency to float around the perimeter on offense can make him a bystander at times. He lacks the feel to become a high-level passer out of the post and his decision-making can be extremely suspect.
The same questions dog him on the defensive end of the floor. He has the measurables to be a dominant rim protector and his feet are quick enough to make him a quality switch defender. Again, his effort waxes and wanes. That makes him foul prone at times and completely ineffective on occasion.
He’s still a prospect with tantalizing tools who will have to answer plenty of questions about his skills and awareness. Like all young players, his developmental trajectory is going to depend a lot on which team he ends up on.
Which NBA teams offer the best situation for James Wiseman?
5. Washington Wizards
Thomas Bryant puts up nice offensive numbers in Washington, but he’s not good enough to stop the Wizards from drafting another big man in the first round. Wiseman’s ceiling easily exceeds anything that Bryant can accomplish.
If Wiseman can learn to maximize his production in the post he could become a great offensive compliment to Bradley Beal. The Wizards could construct an efficient offense based on the balance those two players could provide.
Wiseman’s defensive shortcomings won’t solve Washington’s significant issues on that end of the floor, but he’d still be an improvement over Bryant in that regard. The Wizards will jump at the chance to take Wiseman if they are on the clock when he’s still on the board.