Hawks fans certainly have mixed reviews about how Thursday night’s draft went down. Everyone wants to talk about the trade down for Trae Young, and understandably so. But lost in all this is the fact that the Hawks got one of the best value picks in the draft with the selection of Omari Spellman.
Casual basketballs fans are likely somewhat familiar with Spellman, as he was a big part of a loaded Villanova team that took the championship in April. Yep, Spellman was that guy who did not look that athletic but kept making plays as a redshirt freshman.
Spellman was actually a big-time recruit though, ranking 16th overall in the 2016 ESPN rankings. He was ruled academically ineligible, however, and had to miss his freshman year.
So what makes Spellman a great value pick?
For one, at 6’9″, he could make the perfect center for small ball lineups. Spellman can guard 3’s to 5’s, and that should not go unnoticed. Defensive versatility is something that can get you in in the lineup late in games. On top of this, Spellman also stretches the floor. The Big East Rookie of the Year shot 43% from beyond last season.
A two-way player with great versatility for a big man, Spellman is at least a great fit for the modern game, which probably gives him a solid floor of becoming a role player in the league. But it is not out of the question that he could become more. This pick is the consolation prize from losing Paul Millsap, who is a guy that has become much more with a similar type of game. He went from being a second-round pick to an all-star. Spellman also had been seen as a guy with potential for years, and getting him in better shape could go a long way in taking him to the next level. Spellman played like a four-year player for Villanova, and he is a little older than most freshman, but there is still a lot to learn.