With the 22nd overall pick of the 2017 NBA Draft, the Brooklyn Nets select, Jarrett Allen…The NBA Draft came and went, and was as chaotic as expected. Sean Marks and Kenny Atkinson are putting together something special in Brooklyn, and it starts with last night’s draft pick.
The Nets selected Jarrett Allen, a 6-foot-11 center out of Texas, who was originally projected just outside the lottery. At only 19, he’ll certainly fit in with the young core developing in Brooklyn.
After being selected, Allen was asked how much he was looking forward to playing with the young core in Brooklyn:
“I’m looking forward to it a lot. Having young players, I feel like it creates good chemistry. It’s going to be good for me.”
The Nets, who traded center Brook Lopez just days before the draft, desperately needed to fill the void. It’s not something you do overnight with one draft pick, but Allen will certainly have big shoes to fill with both the fans and the roster.
At 6-11, Allen has a 7-foot-5 1/2 wingspan, a 35.5″ vertical, and over nine-foot reach! It’s worth noting that Lopez at 7-0, has a 7-5 1/2 wingspan, and only a 30.5 inch vertical.
In his freshman season at Texas, he averaged 13.4 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game. Efficiently as well, as he connected on 57 percent of his shots over the year. Allen was the 16th first-round selection out of the University of Texas in school history and even received a shout out from former Longhorn Kevin Durant:
Another longhorn in the league. Salute that man. #JarrettAllen
— Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) June 23, 2017
Head coach Kenny Atkinson spoke highly of the new rookie, earlier today at the post-draft press conference:
“He does everything we want in a big player. He runs the court, defends the rim, has great timing and a feel for the game.”
In college, Allen was somewhat inconsistent but came up big on several occasions. His best game was against the Kansas Jayhawks, where he posted a monstrous performance, with 22 points and 19 rebounds.
Not considered an immediate impact player, Allen will need time to learn and get some strength up before taking on a big role for Brooklyn. Draft Express did note his investment like stature before the draft:
“He’ll need to land somewhere with a great developmental staff and plenty of patience.”
A developmental staff with patience is exactly what he’ll find now that he’s been drafted to the Nets. Without Brook Lopez in the mix, Allen will have more than enough space to develop his game with the right amount of minutes.
For the former Longhorn, he couldn’t have landed in a better spot. With the right amount of work, and of course results, he’ll earn the starting spot often in his rookie year. Something not guaranteed with other teams.
For the Nets, they’ve earned what may one day be a Lopez’ replacement, if not, for now, a fill in. Originally projected as early as sixteenth by Draft Express, Brooklyn may have drafted one of the biggest steals of the class.
The biggest upside to Allen is his frame. Yes, he’s undersized at 6-10, but his 7-5 wingspan will prove beneficial for inside defending. He’s great at finishing on the pick and roll and is starting with a great foundation for only 19 years old.
Despite his strengths, Allen is set to face a steep learning curve from here on out, as will the Brooklyn Nets, as they begin rebuilding from the middle.