2023 NBA Draft Prospects – Bilal Coulibaly, Nick Smith Jr, & Jalen Hood-Schifino

Upside plays? Maybe. These prospects check a lot of boxes as typical Raptors picks, but the risk may outweigh the reward.

Ahh, we're almost done this year's draft coverage. If you're curious, please check out all the previous entries in the series, listed here:
Kobe Bufkin
Cason Wallace
Keyonte George
Gradey Dick & Jordan Hawkins
Dariq Whitehead and Brice Sensabaugh

We also have a draft roundtable coming tomorrow! Stay tuned for that.

I've seen a few of the featured names of this report pop up a lot recently in Raptors discussions, and I understand why. Bilal Coulibaly is the international project pick with an insane physical profile. One of the youngest players in the class posting some impressive statlines in the Euroleague playoffs. A lot of people can get attached to the idea of "potential", and players like Coulibaly are seen as the sexy pick for those who want to take a chance on upside.

Nick Smith Jr, a projected top 5 pick before his unceremonious fall from grace due to a knee injury and a very statistically poor season at Arkansas. He still has that reputation as a scoring guard from his high school days, and he fills a positional need for Toronto. As a 6'5 shot-creating guard, he could be a good value pick if you believe that his struggles were mostly due to his injury.

Jalen Hood-Schifino is a big point-guard who played for a solid Indiana team. JHS is one of the more Raptors-y picks in the draft, as he's 6'6 with a 6'10 wingspan and made his living as a gritty defender with a well-developed mid-range game.

The problem with all of these players is that there's a lot of misinformation about their games going around at this time of year. People watch highlights and get carried away with things that may or may not be true. Well, let's evaluate the three of them individually and see what we find, shall we?