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Sports Illustrated not high on Allonzo Trier’s NBA potential

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Jeremy Woo believes the Arizona guard will go undrafted

Buffalo v Arizona Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Only 60 players get selected in the NBA Draft, so Arizona Wildcats guard Allonzo Trier is in danger of not having his named called in New York this June.

Well, at least according to one Sports Illustrated writer.

Jeremy Woo ranked Trier as the No. 89 prospect in the 2018 NBA Draft, and wrote a not-so-glowing review of the junior guard:

Trier is a dynamic scorer, but his selfish style of play has earned him few admirers among NBA types. The ball sticks in his hands, and you question how he views himself and how willing he’ll be to adjust when he’s not the top perimeter option. He’s not a high-end athlete, which means a lot of contested threes and difficulty attacking the basket—there’s a high bar for guards who are professional scorers, so to speak. He’s not a playmaker or a great defender, and has little appeal beyond his shooting ability. Trier needs to score to be successful and certainly has talent, but needs to reinvent himself a bit to have a chance at sticking in the NBA.

I think Woo’s evaluation is mostly spot on, though I do think he might be overlooking Trier’s handle and body control, which help him create shots off the dribble despite not having a lightning-quick first step.

I also think Trier, a crafty finisher, will benefit from the increased spacing and pace that exists in the NBA game.

But Trier will certainly need to become a more well-rounded player to stick in the league. To his credit, he did improve as a passer at Arizona.

Trier’s assist numbers rose from 1.6 per 40 minutes as a freshman to 3.8 as a junior. So I don’t think it’s outlandish to believe that he can become a serviceable combo guard on that end of the floor.

But defensively is where Trier’s biggest issues are, in my opinion. It’s hard to find any numbers that suggest he improved on that side of the ball at Arizona. And scorers are easy to find, so the great separator is usually defense, unless Trier can continue to put the ball in the basket at an elite level and overshadow the weaknesses in his game.

Woo doesn’t envision that happening, so he has Trier going undrafted, though many others peg him as a second-round selection.

Woo is high on fellow UA guard Rawle Alkins who he ranked as his No. 25 prospect. He also has Deandre Ayton going No. 1 overall, though that’s common practice at this point.

The NBA Draft is on June 21.