“Every team that called said the same thing — that if he had shot the ball more consistently this year, he’d be an easy first-rounder. Easy,” said DeAndre Haynes, a former assistant at Maryland for the last two years before moving on to Marquette this offseason.
Those calls came over and over, Haynes explained, after Wiggins went through individual predraft workouts with teams for the last two months. Given a closer look at the 6-foot-5 swingman with a 6-foot-9 wingspan, they found something resembling a prototype NBA two-guard.
As a junior, Wiggins was set to take over a staring role, but he sometimes looked like a miscast leader of an undersized team. Maryland spent a fair amount of time figuring out an identity. In time, though, the Terps leaned into a smaller lineup, found their way. Down the stretch, they rode Wiggins, and he responded by delivering 18.0 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He made 4.3 2-point baskets on 60.3 percent shooting and 2.5 3s on 41.8 percent shooting.
And there was the Alabama game. Wiggins dropped 27 points on one of the best defensive teams in college basketball. He hit 3s. He scored on all variety of drives. He converted spins and pivots and jab-steps and running floaters. He looked like a first-round draft pick, that’s for sure, and it’s likely that game played a part in Wiggins’ final decision to bypass his final year of college.
As a pro prospect, Wiggins brings a blend of length, athleticism, speed and crafty skills. The question is, can the Greensboro, N.C. native distinguish himself at the NBA level and carve out a place in the Thunder’s plans?
Robinson-Earl is a polished prospect. He’s a cerebral player who has a strong feel for the game. He’s a highly skilled passer for a big man. He’s very comfortable with the ball in his hands and is great at making plays for others, so much so that toward the end of last season when Villanova lost starting point guard Collin Gillespie to injury, Wright was comfortable giving Robinson-Earl reps at point guard — and he actually looked good doing it.
That, however, is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of Robinson-Earl’s offensive versatility. He has strong footwork and an ability to finish around the rim with either hand (made 67.7 percent of his shots at the basket in half-court settings last season). He can put the ball on the deck when matched up against slower forwards and centers. Robinson-Earl shot just 28 percent from deep last season, but he has the mechanics needed to develop into a consistent 3-point threat in the league.
Robinson-Earl, who turns 21 in November, is a high-floor, low-ceiling type of prospect. He isn’t a great athlete, so developing a consistent jumper will be the key for his longevity in the league. Best case scenario, given his jumper develops, he should be a solid rotational contributor at both ends. But again, if he can’t hit outside shots, it might be difficult to justify keeping him on the floor.