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Duke And The NBA Draft: Paolo Banchero Update

Duke’s brilliant young forward is going to make some NBA team very happy very soon.

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2022 NBA Draft Lottery
CHICAGO,IL - MAY 17: NBA Prospect, Paolo Banchero poses for a photo during the 2022 NBA Draft Lottery at McCormick Place on May 17, 2022 in Chicago, Illinois. 
Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/NBAE via Getty Images

There’s not a lot of surprises about Paolo Banchero at this point but one did come up about the former Duke star: he measured out at 6-10 12 - with no shoes.

It’s quite possible that he’s still growing of course. He’s just 19 after all. Imagine what he would be like if he reached 7-0 with his skill set.

In his press conference Friday, Duke assistant Chris Carrawell pointed out another Banchero strength: he’s a gym rat: “I say this about Paolo because you know these GMs call you, scouts call you: Paolo is a gym rat. He’s the guy who you got to kick out of the gym. For a young guy, playing 38, 39 minutes a game, he’ll come back and want to practice and get extra work done.”

There’s still a lot of gamesmanship and bluffing going on with the NBA Draft as teams try to push guys up or down to their advantage. So it’s impossible to know what Orlando will do at #1, much less Houston at #2 or Oklahoma City at #3. The only shock would be if Banchero fell to #4 or lower.

The knock on him so far has been that, given his polish and maturity he has minimal upside. But clearly he’s willing to work and when you consider that he’s essentially a 6-10 12 inch guard with a big man’s game, he’s pretty special.

We certainly wouldn't rule out his getting much better.