Utah Jazz Draft Prospects: Filipowski, McCain, Walter, Missi

Jun 17, 2024, 4:27 PM

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SALT LAKE CITY – The Jazz own three of the top 32 selections in the 2024 draft providing several opportunities to add valuable pieces to their already young core.

Here’s at how Duke’s Jared McCain and Kyle Filipowski, and Baylor’s Ja’Kobe Walter and Yves Missi would fit with the Jazz if they land in Utah later this month.

Related: Utah Jazz 2024 NBA Draft Prospects

For More First-Round Utah Jazz Draft Prospects:

Jared McCain – G – Duke

Stats: 14.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.9 assists: .462/.414/.885

Strengths: One of the best shooters in the draft, Jared McCain was an efficient scorer at Duke knocking down over 40 percent of his threes and nearly 90 percent of his free throws.

McCain isn’t solely a shooter, however, showing an ability to put the ball on the floor and attack closeouts while finishing at a healthy rate near the rim.

The Duke freshman is a willing defender who should be able to guard both backcourt positions in the NBA, and averaged a very healthy 5.0 rebounds per game.

Weaknesses: McCain measured in at 6-foot-2 at the NBA combine with a 6-foot-3.5 wingspan and mediocre athletic numbers.

Despite having a point guard’s frame, McCain is not a lead ball handler and is a bit undersized for a full-time two-guard in the modern NBA.

Fit With Jazz: Like every team in the NBA, the Jazz could use more shooting in the draft and McCain would help ease the burden for the current backcourt to knock down shots.

However, the Jazz already feature one of the NBA’s smaller backcourts with Keyonte George and Collin Sexton, and McCain would do little to solve that issue.

Draft Range: First round, picks 10-20.

Kyle Filipowski – F/C – Duke

Stats: 16.4 points, 8.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists: .505/.348/.671

Strengths: Kyle Filipowski is one of the more well-rounded offensive centers in this year’s draft combining terrific footwork, hands, court vision, and the basketball IQ to do all of the other things in an NBA system.

The Duke sophomore stuffed the stat sheet with 1.5 blocks and 1.1 steals per game and knocked down a healthy 35 percent of his 3.1 three-point attempts per game.

Filipowski will quickly provide floor spacing as a passer, short roller, and three-point shooter in the NBA.

Weaknesses: Despite a decent 1.5 blocks per game average, Filipowski offers little in the way of rim protection and becomes a worse defender the closer he gets to the hoop.

While he moves his feet well defensively and records a high number of steals, he lacks strength and will get pushed around by stronger players at every position at the next level.

His height advantage that allowed him to score and rebound in college won’t have the same impact in the NBA, and until he gets stronger, he may have a tough time finding the floor.

Fit With Jazz: The Jazz have one of the worst passing frontcourt in the NBA and Filipowski would immediately offer some of the same plusses Kelly Olynyk brought to the team before the February trade deadline.

Filipowski lacks enormous upside due to his average size and strength, but could be a valuable contributor in any rotation if he fine-tunes his physique and jump shot.

Draft Range: First round, picks 15-30.

Ja’Kobe Walter – Wing – Baylor

Stats: 14.5 points, 4.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists: .376/.341/.792

Strengths: A top ten recruit coming out of high school, Ja’Kobe Walter burst onto the scene with a tremendous first two months as a college player before dramatically falling back to earth to close his freshman season.

Walter has good size for an NBA wing at 6-foot-5.5 with a 6-foot-10 wingspan and a 38.5-inch vertical.

The Baylor wing shot a reasonable 34 percent on over six three-point attempts per game while earning an impressive 5.2 trips to the free-throw line.

At just 19 years old, Walter still has room to grow into his plentiful tools.

Weaknesses: Walter’s 37 percent shooting from the floor is bizarrely low for a player with his physical advantages, and highlighted both his difficult shot selection and inability to score inside the paint.

Walter attacked off the dribble at Baylor, but rarely got anywhere meaningful with the ball.

Despite his terrific athleticism, Walter’s defense was underwhelming at Baylor, and won’t get any easier in the NBA.

Fit With Jazz: Despite his poor showing at Baylor, Walter still has the type of physical tools and upside as a 3-and-D wing that NBA teams desperately seek.

He wouldn’t contribute to the Jazz early in his career, but intel suggests he’s a hard worker, and could reach his high potential if provided with the patience needed to develop.

Draft Range: First round, picks 10-20.

Yves Missi – C – Baylor

Stats: 10.7 points, 5.6 rebounds, 0.4 assists: .614/.000/.616

Strengths: A relative newcomer to the sport, Yves Missi only begin playing organized basketball in the last three years.

Considering his rapid development as a rim-running big man, the team that drafts him hopes that there is untapped potential with the ball in his hands that could burst with NBA development.

At seven feet tall with a 38.5-inch vertical, Missi was a willing dunker and shot blocker during his lone season at Baylor and projects to have an obvious role at the next level for a team looking for athleticism near the rim.

Weaknesses: Like many players who are late to the game, Missi’s basketball IQ needs improvement, and his impact ebbed and flowed heavily throughout his freshman season.

Despite his physical advantages, Missi failed to score in double-digits in 13 of his 34 college appearances, and recorded 10 rebounds or more only six times, while grabbing two or fewer nine times.

Fit With Jazz: Missi’s raw tools are a reasonable upside swing for teams in the latter half of the first round, though his weaknesses, namely rebounding and passing might make it difficult to find the floor in Utah early in his career.

Draft Range: 15-30

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Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

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Utah Jazz Draft Prospects: Filipowski, McCain, Walter, Missi