Yet another Michigan State basketball player was snubbed in the NBA draft as Cassius Winston was the latest to suffer a shocking free-fall.
Seven picks stood between Cassius Winston and undrafted status. Fifty-two picks came before him and only a handful came after him. That sticks with a player who was projected as a fringe first-rounder.
Just ask Draymond Green.
Actually, Green was one of the first guys to congratulate Winston, telling him to remember this moment and make those teams regret passing on him. Cassius will.
Oklahoma City drafted him No. 53 overall and traded his rights to the Washington Wizards who have Ish Smith and Shabazz Napier backing up John Wall but he could push for one of those No. 2 or No. 3 spots on the depth chart.
Why did teams pass on Winston? His athleticism.
Although he killed the shooting drills at the NBA combine, teams were worried because he’s not the fastest or most agile guard in the draft. He didn’t dominate any speed drills and some teams believe he won’t be able to defend at the next level because of that.
Defense is definitely his weakness, but he can work on that with footwork. What he lacks on the defensive end, he more than makes up for on offense. He’s as crafty as any player in the country as a certified playmaker. He makes everyone around him better and he broke the Big Ten record for career assists. Oh, and he has a way of contorting his body to make contested layups and his 3-point shooting rate is over 40 percent for his career.
Don’t forget, he’s a winner. He led Michigan State to three straight Big Ten titles and a Final Four appearance.
The former Big Ten Player of the Year is going to find a spot in the league and make the teams who passed on him regret it. He is the steal of the 2020 NBA Draft.