NCAA

The 4 Canadians That Could Be Drafted in the 2024 NBA Draft

Canada continues to break new records in the NBA. Yeah you heard that right. For the 2023-24 season, 27 Canadian players were on an NBA roster, and it marked the 10th straight season where Canada is the most represented country in the league outside the US.

The likes of Oklahoma City Thunder’s Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Jamal Murray from the Denver Nuggets, and Golden State Warriors forward Andrew Wiggins have proved to be inspirational figures for upcoming NBA players. There is always a phalanx of new talent cropping up. With the NBA Draft taking place this summer, we will take a closer look at the potential candidates who could be destined for a big break.

Zach Edey, Purdue

Heading the list of NCAA players who could be destined for NBA stardom is Purdue’s Zach Edey. After a stellar campaign last term where he became the first Canadian to clinch the Naismith College Player of the Year, Edey caught basketball experts by surprise when he pulled out of the NBA Draft in 2023.

That might have been a really good move. He had another great year and 2024 is a weaker draft; meaning that Edey will likely be drafted higher in the lottery.

A towering presence on the floor, Edey garnered attention after averaging over 22 points, 12.9 rebounds, 2.1 blocks, and 1.5 assists on 60.7% shooting during the regular season as Purdue stormed to the Big Ten Championship title and gained a No.1 seeding for March Madness. However, at March Madness, it wasn’t quite meant to be as Purdue succumbed to a 75-60 defeat in the Championship game against UConn, despite Edey top-scoring with 37 points on the night.

Edey has no obvious limitations. Although he was initially reluctant to play basketball, Edey’s decision to stick with it has more than paid dividends, and it seems unlikely he will shun any advances if the NBA comes calling again. He has a bright future ahead of him.

Elijah Fisher, DePaul 

Everything that could go wrong for Elijah Fisher at Texas Tech did. After failing to make the grade and unable to win the respect of his then coach Mark Adams, Fisher got a clean break at DePaul Blue Demons. Indeed, Fisher has turned things around at DePaul, and he has showcased his defensive talents. Bigger things could lie in store for him.

With the NBA Draft beginning to loom into view, inevitably it provokes plenty of debate among fans. This isn’t consigned to the US, but also those with a vested interest around the world. For example, Canadians can get involved and place a wager on the Draft. At many of the best Canadian betting sites, there will be a gamut of futures plugged at some of the top operators, including GreatWin, which boasts competitive prices and regularly advertises lines for Draft picks for bettors to tuck into.

Elijah Mahi Guard, West Valley

Having already proven himself at U23 level as the top scorer in the GLOBL JAM last summer, Elijah Mahi is back for a second year at West Valley, and the Toronto native is quite nimble despite his broad frame, and he is good at powering his way to the rim.

Although he needs to improve his three-pointers, Fisher is only 20 years old, but the potential is there. Perhaps a franchise may be brave enough to take a punt on him at the NBA Draft.

Ryan Nembhard, Gonzaga

With his older brother Andrew Nembhard still trying to find his niche for the Indiana Pacers, Ryan Nembhard would relish the chance to follow in his footsteps. There have been some parallels between Ryan and Andrew in terms of the trajectory of their NCAA careers, and at Gonzaga, he isn’t short on ambition either. Although he is an undersized point guard, Nembhard is hoping Gonzaga can help him realize his dream.

All eyes on the 2024 NBA Draft

For the aforementioned youngsters looking to jump on board the NBA bandwagon, this year’s NBA Draft could be a seminal moment. This guide has only pinpointed four budding stars that will be desperate to get their big break, and they have shown what they can produce. The NBA Draft promises to be a fascinating event, especially for those with connections to Canada. But whether the Canadian players outlined will get the chance to make the step up remains to be seen. You’ll just have to watch this space!

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