Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Must Prove: he's not just another raw 7-footer with long-term potential
Joel Embiid might arguably have the highest upside of any prospect in this projected class. He's just so skilled offensively, and at 7'0" with a massive 7'5" wingspan, he can also anchor a defense in the middle.
But history shows that not all raw big men pan out. And if Embiid does go No. 1, whichever team takes him would have to be patient, given he just started playing organized ball at 16 years old.
To go No. 1, Embiid must prove he's not just another raw 7-footer with long-term potential. He needs to try and prove he's a sure thing—that teams can invest in him knowing they aren't taking any risks.
Embiid is coming off an 18-point, four-block game against New Mexico and a 17-point, eight-rebound game against Georgetown. To really convince scouts he's the real deal, these are the types of performances he needs to have on a consistent basis.
"Right now all Coach wants me to do when I catch the ball is (shoot a) hook shot," Embiid said to Bleacher Report's Jason King. "Sometimes he'll let me face up. I think I'm doing well, though. When I master those moves, I can start doing those things."
If he's able to master some of the moves he's talking about, then he should be the No. 1 pick. The challenge will be getting the lottery winner to believe he's a strong bet to do so. Consistency from here on out could be the key.