After a swift rise up the draft pecking order Nic Claxton finds himself headed to the Big Apple after being selected with the first pick in the second round by the Brooklyn Nets.
With a thin collegiate resume and a reputation as a “raw” prospect Claxton wasn’t a slam dunk to be drafted at all when he declared in April. As recently as early May Claxton was seen as a borderline second-round pick. But after impressing at the draft combine and in individual workouts, his stock soared to the point that Claxton was one of the handful of players invited to the NBA Draft green room at the Barclays Center.
A Nic Nugget: @_claxton33 had One double figure scoring game as a freshman. He had 21 double figure scoring games as a sophomore. His rate of improvement is on a BIGTIME track. An NBA team is getting a major upside guy tomorrow night. pic.twitter.com/VMYI0SA6gY— Tom Crean (@TomCrean) June 19, 2019
But Nic’s production during 2018-19 was undeniable. So was his continued physical development.
A Nic Nugget: @_claxton33 came to @UGABasketball at 6’10/193 and a 7’1/4 wing span. He left in May at 6’11/220 and a 7’2.5 wingspan. All that and can guard POINT GUARDS and just turned 20. The Rise is Real and Ongoing!! pic.twitter.com/JxqNzzx0QG— Tom Crean (@TomCrean) June 19, 2019
Claxton has the potential to grow into an inside/outside threat, the big man who can step out to 20+ feet and shoot the jumper. He’s also improving on the defensive side of the ball and will likely get better on that end of the court as he develops physically.
Claxton’s elevation from a relative unknown to a bona fide big time prospect in under a year is also a great advertisement for Tom Crean and his staff. If all goes as plan, Claxton will be joined by a couple of other UGA Hoop Hounds on Draft night 2020. Until later...