Projected top-five pick Jalen Suggs issued a warning to those teams that may pass on him Thursday in the NBA draft as the former Gonzaga Bulldogs guard believes highly in his future in the league.
Suggs was named a consensus second-team All-American after averaging 14.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.9 steals in 30 games. He helped lead the Zags to the national title game after draining the game-winning shot over UCLA in the Final Four.
The 20-year-old has been highly touted as a potential franchise-changing type of prospect given his skillset as a point guard and ability to lead his team. He is highly touted for his court vision as the lead ballhandler and is among the most athletic players in the class.
With his ability, Suggs knows he can perform with any NBA team.
I know I’ll thrive in whatever system, whatever city I end up in. I would say the (teams) that do pass up on me, and take another prospect, it’ll come back. It’ll be to their detriment. You look at my track record, what I’ve done and where I’ve been, it’s always winning at the highest level. My play has been at the highest level. As far as that goes, if somebody else makes a decision that’s not me, that’s their opinion. I can never be angry at them for that. But I don’t forget those kinds of things. That’s the kind of competitor I am.
Suggs is also regarded as one of the most competitive players in the class. He has won seemingly at every level to this point of his career and has proven to be successful in nearly every situation. Certainly, executives and scouts find value in his ability to make his teams better.
During the pre-draft process, Suggs has worked on fine-tuning several aspects of his game. He is a player that can do it all on the court but still knows there is more room to grow.
I think anybody and everybody — the best players in the league going into offseasons — there is always room to improve. The best shooters can always be better, the best ballhandlers and finishers. I think just, overall, looking to really become a perfectionist in all of the areas I feel like I’m really good at. I don’t feel like there is a true weakness in my game you can really exploit. I think I’m really looking to perfect all of those things and get them to an elite level.
When it comes to the top of the draft board, Suggs is regarded as one of the prospects that will hear his name called early. He is most commonly projected to be the fourth overall pick, and would likely fit in well with the Toronto Raptors if that is the selection.
Certainly, Suggs is confident in his abilities and firmly believes as though he will emerge as one of the best players from this class. Of course, only time will tell if that happens.
The NBA draft is scheduled to begin Thursday at 8 p.m. EDT on ESPN.
2021 NBA Mock Draft: The final projections for all 60 picks
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