When the Hawks are on the clock with the 21st overall selection in this year’s NBA Draft, Caris Levert will most definitely be on their radar. Tim Hardaway Jr.’s former teammate has the prototypical 3-and-D makeup Coach Mike Budenholzer loves. Levert opted to return for his Senior season at Michigan because he felt they could be a contender, but it ultimately ended up being the wrong decision. Levert ended up breaking his left foot in a game versus Illinois. As a result of the injury he had to have the third surgery on his left foot in three years. Many thought Levert could be a lottery pick heading into the college season, but his draft stock took a huge hit with the injury.
Though his health makes him a wild card, being a perennial middle-of-the-pack team requires the Hawks to go after boom-or-bust picks. Levert shot 45% from the 3-point range before the injury, and he has the physical tools needed to become an elite defender with his 6’7″ frame. He also has a very quick release. However, he will likely have to pack on a few pounds to translate his defensive abilities to the next level. Levert has the skill set to be a good player in the NBA. If he can stay healthy, he can definitely contribute to a Hawks team. He plays a very efficient brand of basketball and has the versatility to play the 2 or 3. With Kent Bazemore hitting free agency and Kyle Korver not getting any younger, Levert could be a crucial addition to this Hawks team. Levert should be ready for the upcoming season. The Hawks would be wise to take a flyer on the young wing player. There is a chance they could package up their two second round picks and grab Levert early in the second round in addition to taking a player at number 21, depending on how the draft board shakes out.