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#pounditWednesday, February 1, 2023

Buddy Hield NBA Draft: Teams see him going in top five

Buddy Hield

Buddy Hield has been lighting it up for Oklahoma throughout the college basketball season, and apparently his performance during the NCAA Tournament has only helped his NBA Draft stock.

Hield was on fire during Oklahoma’s Elite Eight match-up with Oregon, hitting most of his outside shots, including many behind the arc. His strong game against the Ducks comes after he scored 27 in a first-round win against Cal State Bakersfield and 36 points in a second-round victory over VCU.

The impressive play by Hield has further cemented his status as a top pick for the NBA Draft.

The Vertical’s Chris Mannix reports that among execs on teams picking in the lottery, Hield is viewed as a top-five pick.

Hield has greatly improved his numbers across the board this season. He entered Saturday shooting nearly 50 percent from the field, 45.8 percent on threes, 88.3 percent on free throws, 5.7 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game — all career-best marks.

Though the NBA Draft lottery has not yet happened, teams like the 76ers, Suns, Lakers, Nets and Timberwolves will all have the strongest chances at receiving top five picks, and therefore getting a shot at the senior guard.

His steady play in four straight games during the NCAA Tournament will go a long way towards convincing teams they can count on Hield. He really only had one stinker all season, and that was in the Big 12 Tournament when he shot just 1-of-8 in a loss to West Virginia. Besides that, he has been extremely reliable.

Photo: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

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