Despite being one of the top scorers in college basketball, Allonzo Trier was not selected in the 2018 NBA Draft.
It’s an unsurprising fate, as he was not listed in any major mock draft. Rawle Alkins went undrafted, too, which was a surprise. They join Brandon Ashley, Chance Comanche, and Kobi Simmons as Wildcats who left school early only to go undrafted.
Trier’s NBA dream is far from over, though, as he has already agreed to a two-way deal with the New York Knicks, according to Yahoo!’s Shams Charania.
Sources: Undrafted Arizona forward Allonzo Trier has agreed to a two-way contract with the New York Knicks.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 22, 2018
A two-way contract is what Kobi Simmons and Kadeem Allen signed last summer. Essentially, it means Trier will spend the 2018-19 season in the G League, with a chance to earn a call up if he performs well enough. The caveat is he will not be able to be on the NBA roster for more than 45 days.
Trier’s scoring ability is enticing. He averaged 18.1 points per game as a junior at Arizona, shooting a hyper-efficient .500/.380/.865 from the field. Those numbers got him a spot on the All-Pac-12 first team.
“Super-efficient, microwave scorer with no shortage of confidence,” reads his NBA.com scouting report. “Had some huge offensive performances as a junior, but several quiet nights as well late in the season. Played a major role for Arizona finishing as the Wildcats’ second leading scorer and passer.
“Did much of his damage scoring opportunistically on the break and from the perimeter in the half court playing both on and off the ball. Finished the season ranked among the most efficient scorers in the country thanks to his ability to hunt easy baskets, get hot from beyond the arc, and make free throws.”
But Trier likely went undrafted because of concerns about his defensive prowess and his ability — or lack thereof — to affect the game in other ways.
While he did log a career-high 3.2 assists per game in 2017-18, he was often criticized for being a ball-stopper and resorting to isolation basketball.
He was a light rebounder, too, collecting just 3.0 per game.
“Strong off-guard who can hold his own in spots as a team defender when dialed in,”reads his NBA.com scouting report. “Not always as engaged or physical in some situations and bites on fakes or doesn’t anticipate drives from quicker guards. Defended a ton of pick & roll actions last season as teams tried to lure Arizona’s big men to the perimeter. Has room to play with more discipline and urgency.”
Trier is an example of why returning to school isn’t always the best option. He was listed in mock drafts all throughout his freshman season and even his sophomore season, despite the fact he was suspended for 19 games after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
And while Trier did improve as a junior, his perceived upside evidently fell among NBA evaluators.
He attended the NBA Combine and worked out for several teams during the pre-draft process, but couldn’t build his stock back up.