Dunn averaged 16.4 points, 6.2 assists and 5.3 rebounds a game in his redshirt junior year with the Friars, helping the school reach the second round of the 2016 NCAA tournament.
"I wanted to come back, get my degree and made the NCAA tournament," he told Goodman. "I also felt like I improved my outside shot, even though it still needs work, cut down on my turnovers and became a better leader."
Many expected Dunn to make the jump as soon as the Friars exited the Big Dance. In February, Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman ranked the Providence star the No. 1 point guard in this year's draft class:
Dunn ranks top five in steals, again, thanks to blazing foot speed, long arms, active hands and anticipation.
But if he's ever going to be signing an All-Star-level contract, it will be due to his playmaking. Dunn is lightning in the open floor and dangerous on off-ball screens as a passer or scorer. He's an excellent shot-creator—both for teammates and himself within 18 feet.
While Dunn's college career ended in a 85-66 defeat to the North Carolina Tar Heels in the second round of the NCAA tournament, he looked strong, scoring 29 points on 10-of-16 shooting. He also produced a pair of highlight-reel breakaways to kick off the second half:
It's Early, but Stevens Is the Coach of the Year
Shaq and Chuck Used to Get into It on the Court
LeBron Isn't Worried, but Maybe He Should Be
NBA Superstars Are Cruising by Scoring Milestones
This Lakers Rookie Is Ready to Take Over the NBA
LeBron James Jr. Is More Than Just His Famous Name
Growing Up: Damian Lillard Tells Us How He Improved His Jump Shot as a Kid
Growing Up: the Game That Showed Isaiah Thomas He Could Be an NBA Star
Growing Up: How Kyrie Irving Became One of the League’s Most Lethal Scorers
NBA Africa Game 2017: Embiid, Porzingis & More Battle in Johannesburg
NBA Stars Are All in on #DriveByDunkChallenge, the Summer's Hottest Meme
Lonzo Ball Proves He’s a Big Baller by Winning Summer League MVP
Best and Worst Moves of the NBA Offseason So Far
Winners and Losers of the 2017 NBA Draft
Jayson Tatum NBA Draft 2017: Scouting Report, Grade for Celtics Rookie
Grading the Jimmy Butler Trade for the Chicago Bulls
Josh Jackson NBA Draft 2017: Scouting Report, Grade for Suns Rookie
Lonzo Ball NBA Draft 2017: Scouting Report, Grade for Lakers Rookie
Pick 1: Markelle Fultz NBA Draft 2017: Scouting Report, Grade for Sixers Rookie
The Golden State Warriors Have Secured Their Place in NBA Finals History
Barring disastrous showings at the draft combine and in his individual workouts with NBA teams, Dunn should be a top-10 selection this June. He commits a few too many fouls and turnovers, but that almost certainly won't dissuade teams given his impressive numbers and his improvement over the last two years:
|Kris Dunn's Per-Game Averages|
During his first two years at Providence, Dunn dealt with persistent shoulder issues, which allowed him to receive a medical redshirt for the 2013-14 season. Since he has remained healthy during his redshirt sophomore and junior seasons, NBA teams shouldn't consider him an injury risk.
One potential problem for Dunn in terms of his eventual draft position could be beyond his control. Most of the teams currently in the lottery aren't in desperate need of a point guard:
|Current 2016 NBA Draft Lottery Order|
|1||Philadelphia 76ers||Ish Smith|
|2||Los Angeles Lakers||D'Angelo Russell|
|3||Phoenix Suns||Brandon Knight/Eric Bledsoe|
|4||Boston Celtics||Isaiah Thomas|
|5||Minnesota Timberwolves||Ricky Rubio|
|6||New Orleans Pelicans||Toney Douglas/Jrue Holiday|
|7||Sacramento Kings||Rajon Rondo|
|8||Denver Nuggets||Emmanuel Mudiay|
|9||Toronto Raptors||Kyle Lowry|
|10||Orlando Magic||Elfrid Payton|
|11||Milwaukee Bucks||Jerryd Bayless/Michael Carter-Williams|
|12||Utah Jazz||Shelvin Mack/Dante Exum|
|13||Phoenix Suns||Brandon Knight/Eric Bledsoe|
|14||Detroit Pistons||Reggie Jackson|
Still, plenty of general managers will be looking to target that position early in the draft. A team could always trade into the lottery in order to select Dunn should he start falling.
Dunn is a dynamic presence in the backcourt, and he should help an NBA team right away. As a result, he's a near-lock to be among the names called during the top 10 picks of the 2016 draft.