2020 NBA Draft

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Let’s just hope he and Giorgi are having too much fun here.
If Kofi stays, this will be a big part of the why. Kofi said (my rephrasing here) that basketball was getting to be too much like work during his last year of high school. He choose Illinois because Gyorgi was clearly having so much fun.

There is much to be said for enjoying what you do.
 
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My 2 cents.

Ayo is struggling, but even in a slump, his numbers are decent. If he gets through this, the early struggles won't matter. Scouts care most about how these guys do in big games. Padding stats means nothing --gotta play big against the best.

He had some weaknesses in conference play last year. His overall A/T for example, was respectable, but not very good in conference. His 3 pt shooting is down this year, and we've seen him make more drives out of control this year. I think his defense reflects his slump as well. Those are all bad signs, and he needs to play within himself more. At this point, I'm on the fence. I think he has the potential, but I get why people are doubting him.

I think he also has some challenges that are unique to his style of play, and how it matches what the NBA looks for. His shooting just isn't good enough to play out on the perimeter, so he's got to establish himself getting to the rim and making plays. Both are questionable at the moment, but seriously so on his shooting. He's got work to do. He needs to show he can drive on anyone, and make the pass when he's doubled.

Kofi has impressed the hell out of me, and I wouldn't be surprised to see him drafted. Just a few months ago, he was pudgy and plodding. He's transformed himself physically in a short period, and if there's one thing I've seen consistently, it's this: while small guys have a hard time bulking up, big guys who slim down are to be feared. They retain a lot of strength, but get quicker and more explosive. Kofi has a heavy-weights mentality out there. He got beat for some rebounds he had position for against Michigan and Arizona, but I think by the end of the season that will be a rarity. And his shooting form and touch are pretty decent away from the basket. He hasn't really passed much, but I think he's capable of figuring that out. He hasn't really needed to pass out of the post because teams haven't really doubled him much. Gonna enjoy him while we've got him.
 
So, why is Romeo Langford a lottery pick, and Ayo not? Honest question. Superficially they are very similar on paper, surprisingly similar.

Langford spent the entire season being criticized by IU fans and media for underwhelming, but was still in the lottery. What’s the explanation? And how does that, or not, apply to Ayo’s situation?
 
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So, why is Romeo Langford a lottery pick, and Ayo not? Honest question. Superficially they are very similar on paper, surprisingly similar.

Langford spent the entire season being criticized by IU fans and media for underwhelming, but was still in the lottery. What’s the explanation? And how does that, or not, apply to Ayo’s situation?
Romeo was plagued by a terrible IU roster with no shooters. And yet he still was able to get to the rim at a decent clip.

In a way, Ayo is dealing with a similar situation. Our spacing isn't especially good when Giorgi and Kofi share the floor. The driving lanes that Ayo had last year just flat out aren't there. You can really see things open up for him when Kofi goes to the bench. That's an adjustment he's going to need to make though.

The dissimilarity between those two is Romeo was a consensus top 5 player and was being mocked around that number before IU put a serious dent in his stock. Ayo's been on NBA radars since before ever putting on an Illini uniform - but not to the same degree as Langford.
 
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I, personally, think Kofi will go, because the same thing happened with Meyers Leonard. He developed 1 more year, yes. But he wasn't as polished offensively yet.
 
So, why is Romeo Langford a lottery pick, and Ayo not? Honest question. Superficially they are very similar on paper, surprisingly similar.

Langford spent the entire season being criticized by IU fans and media for underwhelming, but was still in the lottery. What’s the explanation? And how does that, or not, apply to Ayo’s situation?
Langford as a scorer was leaps and bounds ahead of Ayo entering college. He was a McD player who averaged like 30 something throughout high school I believe. The similiarity really stops at the height/weight for the both. Ayo is a special player in his own right, Langford could get his and others in alot of different ways though. Indiana did him no favors really.
 
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Langford as a scorer was leaps and bounds ahead of Ayo entering college. He was a McD player who averaged like 30 something throughout high school I believe. The similiarity really stops at the height/weight for the both. Ayo is a special player in his own right, Langford could get his and others in alot of different ways though. Indiana did him no favors really.
Fair enough, but the comparison extends beyond just height. The college are very similar, and Ayo is the better shooter. Langford did shoot 0.5 FT/FGA while Ayo shoots half that. If anything, this is another example of college stats not mattering to pro teams.

So Langford is a better creator and facilitator?
 
Never a failure if you are happy and live a good life, basketball, dishwashing, managing, are means to life, they are not life in the end. To label anyone a failure for living up to "expectations" is narcissistic. You can say they didn't live up to public or personal expectations, but we are not the judge of someone. They might not have lived their dream, but how many do, and how many would TRY in the public eye?
Sorry if I was unclear, but I meant HIS expectations. If a guys wants to be in the NBA and have a long career but is out after his first contract, then I would assume he would be dissapointed. But thanks for the soapbox, I appreciated the lecture.
 
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Sorry if I was unclear, but I meant HIS expectations. If a guys wants to be in the NBA and have a long career but is out after his first contract, then I would assume he would be dissapointed. But thanks for the soapbox, I appreciated the lecture.
I see about 50 NBA games a year & know many players. They all want to play & have great NBA careers. I would think most of them would be disappointed if their career lasted one contract/four years regardless of the $2 million salary carved out a zillion ways.
 
I still think Kofi is around for a 2nd year. He doesn't have an outside game and that's what the NBA is about now.
To a degree... I think that is a bit over-stated though. Jaxson Hayes was the #8 pick last year, and didn't attempt a 3 point shot in his college career. Kofi has something that most don't. The size, strength, and athleticism to compete defensively and on the boards with NBA Centers on day one of his career. This year's draft class is really light on Centers. Kofi's size and potential could be too much to ignore. All it takes is one GM to fall in love, and make him a promise. It sure didn't take Illini fans long to fall for him. NBA scouts will catch up soon.

As much as i would love to see him in Champaign for another season, the staff needs to have a contingency plan in recruiting in case he is our first one and done.
 
I think Ayo’s game might translate better to the nba. It’s a more free flowing transition game now, so his strengths can be on display regularly. Nobody in the nba plays 2 true bigs anymore, so his driving lanes will be open. You can’t stack defenders in the middle of the paint to stop drives, so you give up layups or over help and give up weakside kicks and drop offs. And of course, you can’t touch anybody on the perimeter or it’s a foul.

His shooting still needs a ton of work, and he could still increase his vertical explosion, but I can see how people would like the rest of his game enough to take him in today’s nba.
 
Fair enough, but the comparison extends beyond just height. The college are very similar, and Ayo is the better shooter. Langford did shoot 0.5 FT/FGA while Ayo shoots half that. If anything, this is another example of college stats not mattering to pro teams.

So Langford is a better creator and facilitator?
Don't think Ayo is better shooter. Langford played most of last year with injured thumb. Ayo has not proven to me he is an average major college shooter. Hope it's in there but have not seen it.
 
I think Ayo’s game might translate better to the nba. It’s a more free flowing transition game now, so his strengths can be on display regularly. Nobody in the nba plays 2 true bigs anymore, so his driving lanes will be open. You can’t stack defenders in the middle of the paint to stop drives, so you give up layups or over help and give up weakside kicks and drop offs. And of course, you can’t touch anybody on the perimeter or it’s a foul.

His shooting still needs a ton of work, and he could still increase his vertical explosion, but I can see how people would like the rest of his game enough to take him in today’s nba.
I think the definition of a "2 true bigs" is just outdated. Lots of great teams play 4, but now a days the 4 position has more skill. You can make the argument that this NBA is more demanding on bigs (especially the 4) to do more than just squat in the post. Anthony Davis, Blake Griffin, Al Horford, Siakam, Sabonis, Giannis, Love, and a handful of younger players could play in any era. I think the pendulum is swinging away from small ball in the NBA.
 
Don't think Ayo is better shooter. Langford played most of last year with injured thumb. Ayo has not proven to me he is an average major college shooter. Hope it's in there but have not seen it.
Well, he was an average P5 3 point shooter last year. We'll see if he gets back to that this season.
 
Rockford, IL
Just saw the latest Bleacher Report 2020 mock draft. Neither Ayo or Kofi are mentioned. First round predictions only.
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!!! 🎆🎄🙏
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I don't think he's a draft pick if he doesn't improve his ball handling and shooting enough to play
20-25 minutes a game at Kentucky.
 
I don't think he's a draft pick if he doesn't improve his ball handling and shooting enough to play
20-25 minutes a game at Kentucky.
No where to be found in the latest NBA Draft.Net mock draft dated 12/27. For that matter neither are Ayo nor Kofi.
 
No where to be found in the latest NBA Draft.Net mock draft dated 12/27. For that matter neither are Ayo nor Kofi.
Ayo and Whitney are both ranked in the 80's in nbadraft.net prospect top 100. Both are firmly (unsurprisingly) outside of the 2nd round. Kofi is still not considered a top 100, which is somewhat perplexing to me.
 
Aurora, IL
Ayo and Whitney are both ranked in the 80's in nbadraft.net prospect top 100. Both are firmly (unsurprisingly) outside of the 2nd round. Kofi is still not considered a top 100, which is somewhat perplexing to me.
“Experts”
 
Los Angeles
Ayo and Whitney are both ranked in the 80's in nbadraft.net prospect top 100. Both are firmly (unsurprisingly) outside of the 2nd round. Kofi is still not considered a top 100, which is somewhat perplexing to me.
The NBA mock draft sites are worthless this far out. Especially NBADraft.net. I'm not even sure they were mocking Zion #1 this time last year (Barrett). They're historically stumbling around in the dark up until all the solid info drops after the combine. Pay no heed.
 
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