Duke’ freshman forward Paolo Banchero rose up draft boards Thursday night to become the unexpected number one overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft.
“It’s beyond exciting,” Orlando Magic’ head coach Jamahl Mosley said of adding Banchero, via NBA.com.
“That’s the one thing we’ve constantly talked about is the versatility and the ability to play both sides of the ball. Guard multiple positions. He’ll also be a great playmaker, decision maker, and he’s a giver and a distributor. That’s going to be a great addition to our team.”
Most draft boards had Banchero falling to the Houston Rockets at the third pick – but Magic’ President of Basketball Operations Jeff Weltman evidently felt he was the best prospect in the draft.
“This is a nineteen-year-old who has so much growth potential,” Weltman said.
“We feel like he was the best player in college basketball.”
Gonzaga’ forward/center Chet Holmgren went to the Oklahoma City Thunder at #2.
Top prospect Jabari Smith Jr. went to the Houston Rockets at #3.