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The Milwaukee Bucks selected Duke forward Jabari Parker with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft on Thursday night.
Parker has largely been considered to be the most NBA-ready of the top prospects in the draft class, and the Bucks may have nabbed themselves the Rookie of the Year and a perennial 20-point scorer. Yes, Parker is already that refined on the offensive end, able to score in a variety of ways, create for others, and play on or off the ball seamlessly.
The knocks on Parker have come on the defensive end, where he faces an uphill battle to respectability, to the point that he was even subbed out for key defensive possessions at Duke. He's not quite the elite athlete some of his peers in the class are, though his length is impressive.
Really, though, in any other draft he's a near-consensus number-one pick, because scorers this talented don't come along often. He averaged 19.1 points and 8.7 rebounds on better than 47 percent shooting and it was legitimately asked whether "he can ever be more than just a really good All-Star?" which, come on, that's one heck of a floor.
The Bucks and Parker have been paired for months. Parker even went as far as to predict his landing spot on Wednesday. In Parker, the Bucks not only land themselves an excellent scorer with loads of upside, but they also netted the hometown kid.
And of course, there are the short-term benefits to drafting Parker. It gives the rudderless franchise a star to build around going forward. The Bucks have holes at just about every position, but nowhere more than on the wing. Parker will reportedly command a starting four-spot, operating as a small-ball power forward from the get-go.
Feature photo courtesy of Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports