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2011 NBA Draft: What the NBA Experts Are Saying About Arizona's Derrick Williams

ANAHEIM, CA - MARCH 24:  Derrick Williams #23 of the Arizona Wildcats handles the ball against Mason Plumlee #5 of the Duke Blue Devils during the west regional semifinal of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at the Honda Center on March 24, 2011 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images
Collin BerglundCorrespondent IIIApril 6, 2011

Derrick Williams, of the Arizona Wildcats, will be a top pick in the 2011 NBA Draft.

Williams, a sophomore, led his team to the Elite Eight, losing to the eventual champion: UConn.

Arizona relied on Williams all year, as he scored nearly 20 points per game on 60 percent shooting.  He also pulled down eight rebounds per game.

He made his biggest splash by scoring 32 with 13 rebounds in Arizona's blowout of the No. 1 seeded Blue Devils.

Throughout the season, he played with intensity on both sides of the floor, as viewers could see with his shouts and explosive dunks throughout the tournament.

Williams is an incredibly versatile scorer.  He is not afraid to shoot three-pointers (going 42-74 from three-point range this season), but also mixes it up inside against bigger bodies and can slash to the basket for thunderous finishes.  

Williams is the best all around scorer in the country, according to ESPN's David Thorpe.

A number of college players have trouble transitioning to the defensive intensity of the NBA.  Undersized players (tweeners) like Williams, often struggle to guard bigger and stronger guys.  

Some draft analysts have his stock dropping because of his defense, but his defense should translate to the pro game,according to the Arizona Daily Star.

The only significant drawback to Williams as an NBA player is his size.  

At 6'8", he is an inch or two too short to play power forward, his ideal NBA position, according to ESPN's Chad Ford.  As a small forward in college, Williams rarely had to guard the biggest guys on opposing teams.  

Despite his long arms and leaping ability, those couple of inches could make it difficult for him to guard the league's best power forwards.

As a high school senior, Williams was ranked No. 72 by ESPNU.  Should Williams enter the draft this season, he will go in the top five.  ESPN and DraftExpress both rank Williams as the second-best prospect in the draft after Duke's Kyrie Irving.

Williams has not yet made public whether he will enter the draft.

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