Although it seemed like the majority believed former Kansas Jayhawks’ swingman Andrew Wiggins would wind up being the number one overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft (and the Cleveland Cavaliers, of course, wound up making him the top pick), there were many who believed former Duke Blue Devils’ forward Jabari Parker or even Wiggins’ Kansas’ teammate, center Joel Embiid, could go first. This year, there seems to be a pretty solid consensus that incoming Duke Blue Devils’ freshman Jahlil Okafor will be the top-overall pick in 2015.
Yannis Koutroupis explains why Okafor is the favorite to go first overall.
Okafor will enter the 2014-15 NCAA season as the favorite to end up the top overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft. He’s the most fundamentally sound and skilled low-post player to come around since Al Jefferson. While lacking the overall talent level of a DeMarcus Cousins or the pure athleticism of a Dwight Howard, Okafor possesses something just as important: true go-to scoring ability. In a league where most centers are asked simply to focus on defense, rebounding and finishing the easy attempts that come their way in the interior, Okafor will immediately become the cornerstone of any offense. He has incredible touch, can finish with either hand, knows how to use his body and has a vast array of post moves he’s already become adept at executing. Already quite experienced at dealing with double-teams, Okafor also understands when to pass out and re-post, choosing when to attack wisely.
The 6’11, 270-pound is from Chicago, Illinois, just like the number two overall pick of the 2014 Draft, Parker (the two players are reportedly close friends and Parker obviously influenced Okafor’s college decision). Okafor attends Whitney Young High School and is regarded as the country’s top prospect according to 24/7 Sports’ composite rankings.