NBA Draft: 4 Centers the Washington Wizards Could Draft at #9

Washington Wizards Bol Bol (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Washington Wizards Bol Bol (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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Washington Wizards Bol Bol
Washington Wizards Bol Bol (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

Every draft, there’s usually one player referred to as something of a “unicorn”. A one of a kind prospect that we just don’t see very often. Something truly magical.

Considering that more and more players are being called unicorns, maybe we should find a new name? They stop being rare if we’re getting a few new ones every year.

Regardless, Bol Bol is one of this draft’s unicorns. If his name rings a bell, it should. He is the son of former Bullets fan favorite Manute Bol. And he really plays like a modern version of his father.

Bol is a model for the next evolution of the NBA big man. He’s huge: 7’3″ tall with a 7’5″ wingspan. But he isn’t limited to at-the-rim action. Bol can shoot from outside (2.8 attempts per game) and he can shoot well (52.0 percent). He has a great first step and is surprisingly fluid for such a tall player, allowing him to attack off the dribble. And he has a decent handle to match. He’s a matchup nightmare on the offensive end.

On defense, he can be a shot-blocking menace (2.7 blocks per game), but also has the ability to defend on the perimeter, although his footwork out there can be iffy. Skillwise, he has it all.

The biggest concern with Bol, however, is his health. In his only year of college basketball, Bol was sidelined for all but nine games while dealing with a stress fracture in his foot. Stress fractures and reactions can be serious and the risk of re-injury is high (just ask Bradley Beal), but there are plenty of players in the NBA right now that have successfully come back from stress-related injuries. There’s no particular reason to think Bol can’t do the same.

Bol’s wiry frame, however, does cause concern. He’ll need to beef up in a major way in order to hold his own on an NBA court. Bol Bol has a ton of question marks, but there’s no denying he’s special. Very special.