Column: Draft Diamonds In The Rough

Column: Draft Diamonds In The Rough

By Eugene Jones With the NBA Draft just a few weeks away, many teams are looking to improve their teams by choosing among the exceptional talent this class has to offer. Headlined by the top prospects of Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, and Joel Embiid, the draft is deep, filled with many players who can make an impact immediately. While this year’s draft should have great talent at the top, it also projects to be a deep draft as well.  The 2014 draft should have some real diamonds in the rough.  With that, we discuss five under the radar players – one at each position – that may make an instant impact for a franchise in the upcoming draft. ***** 1) Elfrid Payton- University Louisiana-Lafayette Junior point guard Elfrid Payton is the best kept secret coming into the NBA Draft. Averaging 19.2 points per game and 6 rebounds per game, along with 5.9 assists per game and 2.3 steals, he has shown he can become a two-way player in this league with his defense and playmaking abilities by penetrating the paint. However, to make an impact at the next level, his perimeter shooting will have to improve, as he shot just 26% from three and 61% at the free throw line. Taking care of the ball will also be a priority if Payton wants to become a successful point guard, as his turnovers increased each year in college. Still, his upside and young age will have general managers and scouts willing to take a chance on him come June. Projected: Mid to late first round. 2) P.J. Hairston- Texas Legends...