Andrew Wiggins: 'I Think I'll Be a Star' in the NBA

Zach BuckleyNational NBA Featured ColumnistJune 18, 2014

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With the 2014 NBA draft rapidly approaching, prospects' stocks are more volatile than ever.

Former Kansas star Andrew Wiggins is feeling quite bullish about a particular stock—his own.

"I think I'll be a star wherever I go," Wiggins said, via Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "That's just how confident I am in my ability."

Confidence is key for surviving at the next level, and the athletic forward has never been short on it.

NEW YORK - MAY 20: NBA Draft Prospect Andrew Wiggins poses for a photo during to the 2014 NBA Draft Lottery on May 20, 2014 at the ABC News' 'Good Morning America' Times Square Studio in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees
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"I always put myself No. 1 above anybody else," he said during an appearance on ESPN's First Take earlier this spring, via ZagsBlog's Adam Zagoria. "That's just me. I got a lot of confidence in myself."

It might be hard not to.

The 19-year-old looked raw during his lone season with the Jayhawks, both in terms of creating his own offense and feeling comfortable taking over a game. That said, he still put up 17.1 points and snared 5.9 rebounds a night.

As an athlete, he may be one of the more impressive prospects in recent years. Standing 6'8" with a 7'0" wingspan, via DraftExpress, and 44" vertical, per, he'll enter the league with some incredible physical assets.

The question that executives must answer is whether that raw ability will one day translate into stardom.

Opinions seem split on the matter.

ESPN's Stephen A. Smith is apparently buying all of the Wiggins stock he can afford:

Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman, who has the Philadelphia 76ers selecting Wiggins with the No. 3 pick, called him a "dynamic open-floor athlete" and "a high-upside wing with All-Star potential."

Other scouts, though, have questioned Wiggins' developing handles and overall aggressiveness.

"His skill level really just isn't there at this point, offensively," DraftExpress' Jonathan Givony told Bleacher Report's Howard Beck. "A lot of guys who are average ball-handlers coming into the NBA stay average ball-handlers their whole life."

Another NBA scout, per ESPN The Magazine (via Wolfley), raised similar concerns:

I have questions about his ball-handling and his ability to get past defenders in our league in the halfcourt. I’m also not sold on his basketball IQ. He does some of the same moves a lot of the time and didn’t make the right reads against defenses. The other major concern I have is whether he has a killer instinct and whether he can be a star.

Wiggins needs a lot of teaching, but it would be tough to pass up the opportunity to work with him considering how many of his tools cannot be taught. His draft classmates won't suddenly inherit his length, quickness or springs, but over time, he could pick up the skills scouts wish he had now.

His basement appears to be that of a disruptive defensive presence, explosive offensive finisher and steady outside shooter. His ability to generate his own offense will likely set his ceiling, but his bag of tricks looks deep enough already for him to make a positive impact on an NBA franchise.

And if he encounters a learning curve steeper than he anticipated, his unwavering confidence could help him get through some rough patches.

If he realizes his full potential, his star will certainly shine in NBA skies. Just like he said it would.