Jaron Blossomgame became the first Clemson Tiger drafted since K.J. McDaniels in 2014, when the San Antonio Spurs picked him with the second-to-last selection in last night’s NBA draft.
Blossomgame, who spent four years as a Tiger, was projected to be a borderline-first-round pick after his junior year but opted to return for his senior year. His draft projections dropped during senior season because the shooting stroke from deep that had buoyed his stock during his junior season regressed to the mean. During every season, apart from his junior year where he shot 44.1 percent from deep, he was below 29 percent from deep.
The Spurs turned Kawhi Leonard, who never shot above 29.1 percent from deep during his two seasons at San Diego State University, into one of the NBA’s best three point shooters this past season, so there’s reason for optimism. The Spurs have had success at developing college players whose games need work (see Jonathan Simmons) into successful NBA talents.
Even if Blossomgame spends some time in the G-League (formerly the D-League), it will not be a death sentence to his career.
Additionally, the Spurs lack depth at power forward so that could be an avenue to some early playing time for Blossomgame, who would fit as a four in the modern NBA.