Alabama Basketball: J.D. Davison and Keon Ellis NBA 2nd Round picks?


For former Alabama basketball players, J.D. Davison, Keon Ellis and Jaden Shackelford the 2022 NBA Draft cannot come soon enough. The wait may feel long, but the Draft is less than two weeks away on June 23.

Late decisions by NBA teams are common, but every team has a list of players it wants, if available to them. The Crimson Tide trio may not be on lots of lists, but it only takes one NBA team to offer them a dream opportunity.

Unfortunately, the chances of a team drafting Jaden Shackelford are small. The young man will play professionally next season. Starting outside the NBA does not mean he will never work his way onto an NBA roster.

Keon Ellis and J.D. Davison are often listed as second-round selections in current mock drafts. The key word is often, but not always. In the three mocks linked below, Ellis is a second-round pick in two of them. J.D. Davison is projected in only one, as a second-round pick.

Throughout most of the college basketball season, many NBA Draft experts had Davison as a first-round pick. As the Alabama basketball season wound down in the spring, Davison’s weaknesses became better known and he began dropping in the mocks.

Varying reports are the Combine and team workouts have helped and hurt Davison’s draft chances. Keon Ellis, by most accounts, has improved his chances to the point of almost being a solid, second-round selection.

Both players are viewed as having the potential to become impact players in the NBA. With Davison, the problem for some teams is a question of how long it will take him to develop. Based on some comments from scouts, Davison may need a full G-League season, or longer to make an NBA roster.

Keon Ellis compared to another former Alabama Basketball player

The situation with Ellis is different. He has more developed skills. A few scouts have compared him to Herbert Jones – not as good as Jones, but a solid defender, plus more of an offensive threat.

With two vacated picks this year, only 58 players will be drafted. For both Keon and J.D. the range of predictions (if drafted) is mid-to-high forties. That is not a comfortable margin for error in the mocks.

Next. SEC teams most helped and hurt by the Portal. dark

The SEC should be strong in the 2022 NBA Draft with as many as seven players chosen in the first round.