Jordan Hawkins, the freshman guard who helped UConn reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2016, has declared for the NBA Draft. Hawkins announced his decision on Twitter on Friday, thanking his coaches, teammates and fans for their support.
Hawkins is a 6-foot-5 wing who averaged 7.8 points and 3.1 rebounds per game in his lone season with the Huskies. He shot 40.4 percent from the field and 36.4 percent from three-point range, showing off his versatility and potential as a two-way player.
Hawkins was not considered a top prospect coming out of high school, as he was ranked No. 63 in the ESPN 100 for the class of 2020. However, he impressed scouts and analysts with his performance at UConn, especially in the second half of the season.
Hawkins scored in double figures in nine of his last 12 games, including a career-high 18 points against Creighton in the Big East Tournament semifinals. He also had 16 points and six rebounds against Maryland in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, helping UConn to a close win.
Hawkins has raised his draft stock with his combination of size, athleticism, shooting and defense. He can play multiple positions on both ends of the floor, and he has a high basketball IQ and work ethic.
He has drawn comparisons to players like Khris Middleton and Mikal Bridges, who are valuable role players on contending teams.
Hawkins is projected to be a late first-round or early second-round pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, according to various mock drafts. He has a chance to improve his stock even more if he performs well at the NBA Draft Combine and in individual workouts with teams.
Hawkins is one of several UConn players who have declared for the draft, joining James Bouknight, Isaiah Whaley and Tyrese Martin. The Huskies will have to reload their roster for next season, but they will always remember Hawkins as one of the key pieces of their return to the Big Dance.
Final Thoughts: UConn’s Jordan Hawkins Declares for NBA Draft
Jordan Hawkins’ decision to declare for the NBA Draft after just one season with UConn is a testament to his impressive development as a player. Despite being relatively unknown coming out of high school, he has raised his draft stock significantly with his performance for the Huskies.
Hawkins’ size, athleticism, shooting ability, and defensive skills make him an intriguing prospect for NBA teams. He has shown the potential to be a valuable two-way player at the next level and has drawn comparisons to established role players in the league.
While Hawkins may not be a top pick in the draft, he has the opportunity to continue improving his stock with strong showings at the NBA Draft Combine and in workouts with teams.
His work ethic and basketball IQ suggest that he will continue to develop as a player and potentially become a steal for a team in the late first or early second round.
For UConn, losing Hawkins and other key players to the draft will undoubtedly present challenges for the team next season. However, the Huskies can take pride in Hawkins’ contributions to their successful return to the NCAA Tournament.
Overall, Jordan Hawkins’ decision to declare for the draft is an exciting development for him as a player and for NBA teams looking for a versatile wing with potential.