There’s less than a month remaining until the NBA Draft, which means someone from Syracuse is likely to not be drafted. Elijah Hughes in 2020 is the Orange’s only draft pick since 2017, and 2022 might continue that trend.
Buddy Boeheim is SU’s best hope to hear his name selected on draft night, but he didn’t even get an invite to the NBA Combine. Boeheim did perform well in scrimmages at the NBA G-League Elite Camp but did not earn the call-up to the main event.
ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, the network’s main draft export, had a glowing review of Boeheim’s shooting on Twitter, but the main question about whether the coach’s son can be successful at the next level is his defense and quickness.
Boeheim can be an elite-level shooter, there is no doubt about that, but he is simply not as athletic as probably 99% of professional basketball players, and despite his big numbers in college as he improved, he’s not going to come in right away and be a finished product.
Boeheim will need plenty of professional seasoning in the G-League, and maybe even overseas. While the ACC is a great test, playing against fellow NBA hopefuls at schools like Duke, UNC, and others, it’s not the same as playing against grown men.
A two-way contract or even just a full G-League level situation will likely be the first step for Boeheim, as it’s unlikely according to experts his name is called on June 23rd. Teams are always looking for more shooting, but they need defense too, and Boeheim will have to prove to them he can defend at an adequate level at least to earn his shot.
Strong shooting can always get you somewhere, but the road will be long and tough for Boeheim to get a shot in the NBA. In reality, it probably will never happen because of the competition for such few spots. Think about it.
15 players are rostered on each of the 30 teams. That’s only 450 NBA players! Compare that to 53 NFL players on each roster on 32 teams and that’s almost 1700 players. It takes a lot of hard work, commitment, and daily focus to achieve NBA dreams, along with players’ talent of course.
Boeheim is going to have to take the hard way, not like guys like Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren, and others who are going to be selected in the top-5 of the draft. Everyone has a different NBA journey. Boeheim has a shot, but it’s going to take a lot to make his NBA dream come true.