The 2022 draft promises to be quite enigmatic, apart from a few long-awaited prospects at the top of the basket. Among the names mentioned a little less, however, we also find two French nuggets… and according to the latest estimates, these players could even be selected in the first round!
The night of June 23 to 24 will be a date to surround for French basketball fans, because we may have the opportunity to sing the Marseillaise soon enough. Two players from France have the potential to be called up in the first round by Adam Silver, according to the site NBA Draft Room. First there is Moussa Diabaté, projected in 20th position in San Antonio. The boy already knows basketball well across the Atlantic, having played for Michigan in the NCAA with whom he demonstrated great athletic qualities:
Moussa Diabate says no: pic.twitter.com/99vLDqd1kQ
— Alejandro Zúñiga (@ByAZuniga) November 14, 2021
Moussa Diabaté and Ousmane Dieng, the next French nuggets?
We see it on the video, the training strong winger (9 points and 6 rebounds on average) is not afraid to go into contact and it’s a good thing before turning pro. Quite agile for his size, he can score in the paint as a little further from the circle and knows how to manage assists in his own half of the field. Not a racket totem, it could however fit very well into a well-established defense and NBA Draft Room compares him squarely to Jonathan Isaac, excellent in the field before the Magic player was disturbed by injuries.
However, the Parisian by birth is therefore not the only Habs to be able to be drafted in the first round. Indeed, a few places behind him, in 24th position (Memphis), we find the young Ousmane Dieng. Unlike his compatriot, he already has some experience of the professional world since he plays in the Australian championship, in the NBL (8 points, 4 rebounds per game). He wears the colors of the New Zealand Breakers, with some pretty promising things in store:
Ousmane Dieng’s progression as a player this year has been surreal to watch. 18 year old Frenchman with a dominant 1st quarter today.
Here it is in 80 seconds!
— Chip Jones (@ChipJNBA) April 4, 2022
Passed by INSEP, the nugget is considered a rather smooth player, with talent in lateral movements and scoring at mid-distance. With a good size (2m08), he is still a little light at 98 kilos and will have to fill out before arriving in the big league. If he is well selected, his ability to get away from the circle could however prove to be very valuable, especially for the Grizzlies if they were to choose him.
Ousmane Dieng and Moussa Diabaté, these are two names that the French public must remember for the upcoming draft. With a little luck, we could have two players from France called up by Adam Silver, which would of course be great news.