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SLC Dunk - Utah Jazz draft rumors: Jazz connected to Stephone Castle, Nikola Topic, and Dalton Knecht?


James Hansen

Syndication: Journal-Courier

Grace Hollars/IndyStar / USA TODAY NETWORK

The draft is fast approaching and we’re seeing more and more prospects the Jazz may go after

In Jonathan Givony’s latest ESPN big board he dropped a lot of information about the top ten in this draft and there were interesting insights into the Utah Jazz.

The first mention of Utah comes when talking about Stephon Castle at #6, Jeremy Woo makes a point to mention the Jazz when talking about Castle.

It has been difficult for NBA teams to schedule Castle on the workout circuit, so it remains to be seen exactly where that will land him on draft night. Teams on his trail will be closely monitoring whether he decides to open up his availability in the coming weeks. He has been most strongly connected to San Antonio, but if the Spurs go a different direction with their two first-round picks, there will be suitors elsewhere in the top 10, with a potentially strong fit in the Utah Jazz.

That certainly looks like the Jazz are interested. The question is, will the Jazz move up? Utah has a ton of assets and, if they really wanted to, could likely make a trade happen to get to 6 if Castle is there. The question is, how much do the Jazz like Castle?

Dalton Knecht is goin 8 on Givony’s board and it looks like the Jazz are one of many teams with interest.

Knecht has positioned himself pretty firmly as a mid-lottery pick, drawing strong interest from Charlotte, Portland, San Antonio, Memphis and Utah in the Nos. 6-10 range.

Knecht looks like a prospect that could help a team right away. Is that the type of player the Jazz are looking for?

The big board has Nikola Topic at 10 where the Jazz are picking. Here’s what Givony says about Jazz interest.

The fact Topic is only 18 — younger than six of the 24 McDonald’s All Americans entering college this season — and was at one point in consideration as a potential No. 1 pick prospect early in the season, means he is unlikely to fall very far down the board on draft night. San Antonio (No. 8), Utah (No. 10), Oklahoma City (No. 12) and Portland (No. 14) are viewed by teams as potential landing spots depending on team doctors’ full assessments of his medicals, which have yet to be distributed. Only teams picking in the top 15 will have access to those, per new CBA rules

Because of Topic’s acl tear, this seems like a potential candidate to fall in the draft. We also saw that Topic’s wingspan is not what teams expected.

Nikola Topic measured in with a 6’5.5” wingspan standing at 6’7”, per @DraftExpress (https://t.co/6sIXzNZ8WK).

Topic’s partially torn ACL suffered last month along with a sub-wingspan could lead to a slide in the lottery.

The long-rumored 7’ wingspan for Topic was way off. pic.twitter.com/muZbH6DFkl

— Evan Sidery (@esidery) June 6, 2024

That negative wingspan and injury scare might make him a high risk high reward candidate for the Jazz. Are they willing to swing for the fences on Topic in this draft?

Finally, the big board has Cody Williams as a potential player for the Jaz. Givony and Woo have him at 12.

At this stage, Williams’ range would appear to be among the widest of our projected lottery prospects. He has interest from teams in the top 10, including Detroit, Charlotte, Portland, San Antonio and Utah, but there are also teams picking outside the lottery that remain curious whether he might fall to them. Where he decides to work out in the next couple of weeks, and how those workouts go for him, will play a big determinant in the outcome of his draft selection.

Williams had a strong showing at times during his time at Colorado this season, but also had some moments where he disappeared which has led to him dropping. Do the Jazz take a risk on a player that showed the shooting ability, and physical gifts that Williams brings? Williams plays at a position of huge value and could be a steal for Utah at 10 if he’s there.

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