NBA Draft has centered around a pair of centers. But ESPN’s Chad Ford says there’s another familiar player who has won over some NBA general managers.

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NBA GMs: Poythress Possibly Top Overall NBA Pick

11/27/2012 10:10 AM

Since opening the season with a timid 8 points and 7 rebounds against Maryland, UK freshman forward Alex Poythress has, as John Calipari puts it, become a beast. The Clarksville native has topped 20 points in each of the last four games, shooting 73% from the field and pulling down almost 8 rebounds per contest. That productivity also has his NBA Draft stock on the rise as ESPN’s Chad Ford noted today that Poythress has emerged as a part of a five-player group being discussed as next year’s #1 overall draft pick.

According to Ford, Poythress, along with Maryland center Alex Len, has joined Indiana’s Cody Zeller, UCLA’s Shabazz Muhammad and UK teammate Nerlens Noel as the leading candidates to come off the board first. Entering the season, scouts were already in love with his explosiveness, defense, rebounding and aggressive style of play. In only five games this season, Poythress has shown those skills to translate immediately to the college level and shown himself to be a capable shooter, ranking second on the team in three-point field goal percentage.

However, questions remain as to whether or not he has a defined position and if is a small forward at the next level, he’ll have to improve his ball-handling. Nonetheless, factoring into the conversation as the top pick in the 2013 NBA Draft should solidy what we’ve already learned this season. Alex Poythress is a beast.

*For the record, Alex Poythress has taken the second-most shots on the team. In case John Calipari quizzes you.

Thomas Beisner

TJ is an Anchor for Spectrum News. You can catch his work on KSTV, the only nightly show in the state focusing on UK Sports. When it comes to UK Basketball, TJ covers recruiting, the NCAA tournament and everything in between. During March TJ probably sees the players more than he sees his family but he’s able to provide Spectrum News viewers the unique insight that only a lifelong fan can give. He’s also taken on several special programs including “Wildcat Forever: The John Stewart Story.” KSTV airs weeknights at 7:30 and 11pm on Spectrum News or watch it anytime with Spectrum On Demand. You can also catch podcasts of the show as well as bonus podcasts, just find KSTV on Itunes. For the latest on everything going on with UK Athletics, recruiting or if you just need some hilarious parenting anecdotes follow TJ on Twitter @tjbeisner.

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