Friday, June 21 2024
PERTH, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 13: Alex Sarr of the Wildcats looks on while warming up before game three of the NBL semifinal series between Perth Wildcats and Tasmania Jackjumpers at RAC Arena, on March 13, 2024, in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

Alex Sarr of the Perth Wildcats looks on while warming up before Game 3 of the NBL semifinal series against the Tasmania Jackjumpers at RAC Arena on March 13, 2024, in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

Alex Sarr is expected to be the among the top three selections in the 2024 NBA Draft. The 7-foot-1 French basketball prospect declared for the draft Friday.

Sarr, who will turn 19 this month, played this past season in Australia’s National Basketball League. He averaged 9.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.3 blocks while shooting 30 percent from 3-point range in 17 minutes per game for the Perth Wildcats.

“I had a great year playing professional basketball in the NBL,” Sarr said on ESPN’s NBA Today. “There was a lot of growth in my game and as a person. I’m ready for the next step, so it was obvious for me to declare for the draft. I’m grateful for the year I spent in the NBL with the Perth Wildcats.”

Sarr is projected to be the No. 1 overall selection in Krysten Peek’s latest NBA mock draft for Yahoo Sports:

The versatile center really showed improvement in his footwork off the block and with taking players off the dribble. He’s also an elite rim protector. In a draft that is considered wide open, Sarr has been a name consistently projected at the top.

Last September, Sarr began to look like No. 1 material for NBA scouts in two games against G League Ignite in Las Vegas, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. He averaged 21.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and six blocks while also showing a long-range shooting touch and taking the ball strong to the basket.

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In addition to his 7-foot-1 height, Sarr also sports a 7-4 wingspan. Those features, along with his athleticism, have NBA teams excited about his ability as a rim protector and defender. At 205 pounds, his physique is slight for the NBA. But the performances of rookies Victor Wembanyama and Chet Holmgren this season has shown that lanky, athletic players can make an impact without getting overpowered.

Sarr’s older brother, Olivier, has played the past three seasons for the Oklahoma City Thunder.

After two seasons with Real Madrid’s youth cadet team in Spain, Sarr played in the United States with the Overtime Elite league. In his second season with YNG Dreamerz, he averaged 11.1 points and 6.5 rebounds in 25 minutes per game.

Sarr was among several prospects who declared for the 2024 NBA Draft on Friday, including UConn center Donovan Clingan and Duke stars Kyle Filipowski and Jared McCain.

The 2024 NBA Draft will be held June 26-27 at Barclays Center in New York. The NBA Draft Lottery to determine which team gets the No. 1 overall pick will take place May 16. The Detroit Pistons, Washington Wizards, San Antonio Spurs and Charlotte Hornets have the best odds of winning that selection.

Source: Yahoo Sports

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