8. San Antonio Spurs (via Raptors) choose Stephon Castle
Castle suffered a knee injury in November and missed a month of action. He is still working his way back into form and has not played more than 20 minutes since his return on Dec. 5. The 6’6 guard played just two contests before the injury, so his playing time and production are down at this stage.
There has still been plenty to like on both ends of the floor. Castle finishes well inside and is eager to attack the rim. His touches have been limited for the defending national champions, but there have been playmaking and scoring flashes. On defense, Castle is averaging 1.2 steals and 0.7 blocks in just 18.5 minutes per game. He can guard multiple positions and has wreaked havoc on the opposition.
Stephon Castle has a wide draft range at this stage. If he can prove he is healthy and capable of expanding his production into more minutes, there will be top-five buzz. Another injury could push his draft stock out of the lottery.
The San Antonio Spurs need playmakers around Victor Wembanyama. Castle has the size to play the two and could blossom under head coach Gregg Popovich. Pairing him with Isaiah Collier solves San Antonio’s point guard issues and gives the Spurs two talented young guards to build their roster around moving forward.