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Another Mock Draft with Hamidou Diallo in the First Round

Chet White | UK Athletics

Hamidou Diallo. 2016-17. University of Kentucky men's basketball. Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics

Chet White | UK Athletics

The NBA Combine is prime time mock draft season.  They’re flying off the shelves faster than LaVar Ball hot takes.  Usually not all mock drafts are noteworthy, but Hamidou Diallo’s status provides plenty of intrigue.

One minute, scouts are encouraging Diallo to return to school and avoid an inevitable trip to the D-League.  The next minute, he’s a first rounder.  In Bleacher Report’s latest mock draft, not only is Diallo a first rounder, he’s one spot higher than Bam Adebayo at No. 23 overall.

Nobody has a wider draft range than Hamidou Diallo, who’s flashed lottery-type talent but only at the high school level. His lack of experience, game film and polish will likely turn off the majority of NBA teams. But a few in the first round are bound to be intrigued by Diallo’s explosive athleticism and room to improve.

Upon seeing the Milwaukee Bucks get rewarded for gambling on Thon Maker with the 10th overall pick last June after he similarly passed on college for the draft, more teams could be willing to roll the dice on Diallo’s boom-or-bust potential.

Though he hasn’t hired an agent and could return to Kentucky for his first full season, the NBA is clearly on Diallo’s mind. Should he stay in the draft, look for him to rise following the combine and workouts. We could see Diallo start to leapfrog less sexy juniors and seniors.

Thon Maker might be the reason Calipari doesn’t get a chance to coach Diallo in a game.  The 7-footer bypassed college basketball to play about 20 minutes a game in the playoffs for the Milwaukee Bucks and averaged 5.8 points and 3.2 rebounds per game.  Still, Maker’s an athletic 7-footer.  Those aren’t made everyday.  Athletic wings are a dime a dozen in the NBA, which is why scouts want to see what Diallo can do in college before taking a chance.

Also in Bleacher Report’s mock draft, Bam Adebayo is No. 24, Donovan Mitchell is No. 15, Malik Monk is No. 8, De’Aaron Fox is No. 6, Lonzo Ball is No. 3 and Markelle Fultz went No. 1 overall.

[Bleacher Report]

Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

8 Comments for Another Mock Draft with Hamidou Diallo in the First Round



  1. BTownUKFan
    9:50 pm May 10, 2017 Permalink

    Mock drafts don’t get clicks if they stay with the obvious. Throwing Diallo’s name in mid-first round gets them internet traffic. Pay attention to what the NBA scouts and insiders say. If you really want to determine draft ‘experts’ check their predraft predictions against the actual draft the last 10 years.



  2. Ettish
    9:59 pm May 10, 2017 Permalink

    I wonder how many NBA analysts are trying to troll the influence of his decision; saying he’s going first round to try to persuade hype to keep him from coming back. Conspiracies man.



  3. BigBlue4EverUK
    10:04 pm May 10, 2017 Permalink

    Tired of these mock drafts,who knows were anybody will go. All you can do if have a good workout, and see if you’re name gets called



  4. Earned Not Given
    10:23 pm May 10, 2017 Permalink

    Seems like Diallo, of all people, would’ve hired an agent by now if he had real intentions of leaving. He would need all the advice, representation and influence he can get, having not played in a year, in gaining insight and making decisions. I’m beginning to think he’s the smartest kid in the room, taking the experience for all that it’s worth, knowing full well that he’s returning to Kentucky. And you can say he’d play in the scrimmages to potentially position himself better, but at the same time, what’s the point of playing in the scrimmages and risking injury or anything else if he has no intention of leaving?



    • Aar
      9:07 am May 11, 2017 Permalink

      The kid’s from New York City. Do you think he has not been receiving the advice and training of at least one agent for well over a year already? The only difference for him between signing and not is the ability to go on an autograph tour and a shoe contract to start paying back all of that money people have already spent on him. Diallo has been making very shrewd business decisions all along. Young people generally don’t do that without outside advice.

      My optimistic guess (for BBN’s enjoyment) is that his handlers are learning what the league needs to see to get him in next season’s lottery and increasing the value of his insurance policy. As many posts on here have detailed, getting drafted next year is much more lucrative than this year given identical first round draft spots.

      So, my question is: Who is better for the 2017-18 Cats’ title potential – Hamidou Diallo or Cameron Johnson? My guess is that they are mutually exclusive. I think I might be more seduced by the proven big 5 conference college experience of Johnson than the raw potential and NBA first mindset of Diallo.



  5. plumloopy
    11:01 pm May 10, 2017 Permalink

    Hamidou who? Never met him.



  6. Angelo
    1:30 am May 11, 2017 Permalink

    this kid couldn’t play for UK last year. and he can’t shoot… how can he be pro material?



  7. unbridled
    7:07 am May 11, 2017 Permalink

    Hopefully you people aren’t too shocked when and if he stays in the draft. If he is consistently being told he will be drafted in the first round….he has to remain in the draft. It’s that simple.