Phoenix Suns scouting: DeAndre Ayton

TUCSON, AZ - DECEMBER 09: Deandre Ayton
TUCSON, AZ - DECEMBER 09: Deandre Ayton /

With the college basketball season well underway, now is the perfect time to look at some of the top prospects that will be available in the upcoming NBA Draft.

One of the most hyped of those top draft prospects is University of Arizona center, DeAndre Ayton. Why does Ayton have NBA scouts and front offices buzzing? Let’s take a look.


Growing up in the Bahamas, basketball was not a big part of DeAndre Ayton’s youth. Ayton’s main athletic experience had come from soccer; in fact, basketball barely entered the equation. Still, Ayton’s height, well over 6′ in his youth, was enough to get him invited to one of the biggest basketball camps going on in the Bahamas at the time, the Jeff Rodgers’ Basketball Camp.

After performing well at the camp, DeAndre Ayton moved to the United States to further his basketball career. He played high school and AAU basketball in San Diego and Phoenix, before committing to play college ball at the University of Arizona.


A well-rounded basketball player, DeAndre Ayton has a multitude of strengths. He is a prolific rebounder. So far this season, Ayton has recorded double-digit rebounds in all but five of the Wildcats’ games, for an average of 11.6 rebounds per game.

Another of Ayton’s biggest strengths is his physicality. At 7’1″, 250 pounds, ‘DA’ has NBA size already – and he is only 19-years-old. Opposing college teams have tried to double team DeAndre Ayton, but his unique combination of size and strength generally thwarts their efforts. Ayton has proven that he can overpower two, or even three, college-level defenders on a regular basis.

Finally, DeAndre Ayton’s last main strength is his footwork. At only 19, Ayton has extremely polished low post footwork. He can spin baseline or middle, pivot well with either foot and fade over either shoulder.

One thing about Ayton is certain: whichever NBA team lands him in this year’s draft will be getting a gifted offensive post player.


Holes in DeAndre Ayton’s game are few and far between. The main two things you could classify as “weaknesses” would probably be better categorized as “things Ayton could slightly improve on.” First, DA could improve his discipline, mostly regarding fouls. So far this season, Ayton has fouled out once and reached four fouls a couple of other times. Again, this is not a major issue, but it is something NBA scouts will have their eye on.

Second, Ayton can work on his perimeter shooting. He is fully capable of hitting the 3 every now and then, but in today’s NBA consistent perimeter shooting is key. DeAndre has only shot 24 3-pointers this season and he has knocked down 8 of them. If he wants to make the leap to the next level, a consistent jump shot will be key.

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Why the Phoenix Suns would want him:

If the Phoenix Suns can land DeAndre Ayton in this year’s draft, they will be getting a generational talent. Ayton is already a polished player and will very likely be one of the best players in the NBA for years to come.