Draft Talk: The Phoenix Suns should consider James Wiseman if available

James Wiseman, Phoenix Suns (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
James Wiseman, Phoenix Suns (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) /

If the Phoenix Suns have a chance to draft James Wiseman, they need to strongly consider it, whether it is a position of need or not.

The center position is a dying breed in modern NBA basketball. Across the league, big bruisers who camp down low are suffering a slow yet steady extinction, except in Houston, where the position was shoved off a cliff. The Phoenix Suns have a (somewhat) traditional big man who 30 years ago would have been deemed an unstoppable force in Deandre Ayton. While he still may turn into that, it begs the question, are there any centers in this year’s draft worth picking up?

The answer is just one, and his name is James Wisman. No other center will be selected in the first round.

The Phoenix Suns may need to consider James Wiseman.

In order for the Phoenix Suns to draft Wiseman, two things would need to happen. First, they need to do something they never do and that is to move up in the lottery. There is no way Wiseman will make it to #10 if the Suns maintain their current position based on the standings.

Secondly, James Jones and the rest of the selection committee will have to be firmly in the mindset of drafting the best player available regardless of position.

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While there is a 13.9% chance the Suns could move up to the top 4, there is likely zero chance Jones is going to draft a player who doesn’t play a position of need. I say that because last year’s draft was spent reaching for guys who fit a supposed void (shooting and point guard).

However, when it comes to Wiseman, there is a strong reason to consider the best available strategy when it comes to James Wiseman

The dude is a beast.

He got hosed by the archaic NCAA overlords, but in his three games at Memphis, he was an absolute force. Granted, it was against weak competition, but in those three games, Wiseman averaged 19.7 points, 10.7 rebounds, and three blocks in just over 23 minutes per contest.

That means his per 36-minute averages come out to 30.8, 16.7, and 4.7. That is a lot.

Wiseman is incredibly agile and bouncy to be 7’1″, 237 pounds, and plays much more aggressive than some other nimble seven-footers Phoenix Suns fans may be familiar with. On top of that, he’s left-handed, which adds an extra element of uniqueness.

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I don’t want to make him sound like an absolute basketball diety. He certainly has room to improve, most notably his shooting and general wherewithal. Right now, he is essentially a paint-only scorer, and as mentioned previously, that may not hold in today’s NBA. Having said that, he’s a solid free throw shooter (70 percent) for a big man so that mid-range jumper is there.

Could he play next to Deandre Ayton? Well, if the Bayton experiment, where Ayton and Aron Baynes started alongside each other, was any indication, probably not. Both on the court at the same time would create is a mass of humanity to clog up driving lanes.

However, most rookies don’t start, and having the ability to swap out monster 7-footers would be a great asset to have for the Phoenix Suns.

James Wiseman is a huge, monster athlete, who is cut from the same basketball skill cloth as Deandre Ayton. Unless he drops to 10, the Phoenix Suns likely won’t even have a shot at him, but if they were to sneak into the top 4, he is worth a look, whether they feel like they have their long term solution at the center position or not.

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