Like Jaden Ivey, Johnny Davis is another prospect who benefitted from taking another year in college. If Davis decided to leave after his freshman year, he probably would’ve gone undrafted. But now, he’s one of the top 10-12 prospects in the draft and is expected to go in the lottery. Davis entered Wisconsin as the No.164 ranked recruit coming out of high school. Instead of letting that ranking get to him, he improved his game. Last season with the Wisconsin Badgers, he shouldered the load on the offensive end. He made the 2021-22 All-Big Ten team and was named the 2022 Big Ten player of the year. With the scoring load he carried during the 2021-22 season, he has the potential to be a primary scorer at the next level but there’s work to be done.
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Name: Johnny Davis
Jersey: No. 1
Weight: 196 lbs
In today’s NBA, all you hear about is three-point shooting and rim attacks. It seems as if the mid-range game is a dying art with the rise of analytics and statistics on what is a good shot. However, there are players like Chris Paul and Demar Derozan who still incorporate the mid-range game into the other areas of their game. At age 20, Davis has already shown he has a good mid-range game. This is an area that will translate well to the next level.
Defensively, Davis can hold his own while playing on a defensive-minded team in Wisconsin. He has the size and length to guard wings and guards. If he continues to improve in that area, he can become elite on that end. Another strength he has is his rebounding. Last season, Davis averaged over eight rebounds per game. He doesn’t have the bunnies as Ivey does but he’s a good rebounder who can crash the boards. Having an additional rebounder out there will be very helpful with teams playing small ball a lot.
One area of Davis’ game that needs improvement is his three-point shooting. Davis simply has not been a good three-point shooter, barely shooting over 30% from downtown. He’s even worse shooting the three-pointer off the dribble. If he can shoot it at a respectable percentage, it will open up his game more. Another thing that needs improvement is creating separation. He’s going to struggle against elite defenders at the next level. Davis has to get better at scoring without the use of the screen. Elite defenders and teams are going to exploit that weakness. He’s going to have to be more unpredictable with his scoring at the next level.
Turnovers are another issue for Davis. He had more turnovers than assists last season at college. It’s a bit alarming to see this even though he’s not a floor general. As the focal point of the Badgers’ offense, he grabbed a lot of attention from the defense. His offensive awareness has to improve to the next level. He has to learn when to be aggressive and when to pass to teammates. If he does this, it’ll help lessen his turnover rate at the next level.
Overall, Davis has shown promise as a two-way player at the next level. Defensively, he’s shown he can be a capable defender and defend multiple positions. Most importantly, he’s willing to compete on that end. Offensively, he’s carried the scoring load for his team. But in the NBA, he’s likely going to have a different role. You could argue that he might be the third scorer on whatever team drafts him. The three-point shooting and decision-making remain two areas of concern. Nonetheless, the Badgers guard is likely getting pick in the lottery and should contribute to whatever team drafts him.
Projected Draft Range: Top Ten
Most Likely Team: Washington Wizards
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