The Orlando Magic secured the no. 1 overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft lottery, giving them first dibs on a strong class of prospects. While Gonzaga's Chet Holmgren has been floated as a possible selection for Orlando, Auburn's Jabari Smith could possibly be the better fit, given the Magic's depth at the center spot. Per Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype, an NBA executive compared Smith to this former player. His comparison should excite Magic fans.
That's a nice worst-case scenario, right? pic.twitter.com/1oHQEmW9hy
— HoopsHype (@hoopshype) May 20, 2022
Per Scotto, Smith was compared to former Seattle Supersonics and Orlando Magic forward Rashard Lewis- in a worst-case NBA Draft scenario. That is indeed a nice worst-case scenario.
Lewis played 17 seasons in the league, making two All-Star teams while averaging 14.9 points for his career. The 6-10 forward, who spent four seasons with the Magic, was known as a three-point sniper during his time in the league.
If that's the floor for Smith, then he shouldn't fall past the second pick in the NBA Draft. The Auburn product averaged 16.9 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.1 steals and 1.0 blocks while knocking down 2.3 triples per game at a 42 percent clip.
Smith has the ability to score at all three levels and is a more polished defender than Lewis, who entered the NBA Draft out of high school.
There's a chance that he hits his best-case scenario, which is a very exciting thought for teams picking at the top of the draft, especially the Magic.