clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2023 NBA Draft News: Are the Jazz interested in Kobe Bufkin?

According to Jonathan Givony, Utah may look at Kobe Bufkin with the 9th pick

Rutgers v Michigan Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Yesterday, Draft Express’ Jonathan Givony reported that the Utah Jazz have notable interest in Michigan’s Kobe Bufkin with the 9th pick in the draft. On NBA Today, Givony mentioned that there is speculation that Bufkin has received a draft promise from possibly “Washington at eight, or Utah at nine.”

On the surface, taking Bufkin at nine might seem like a reach, given the strong likelihood that either Ausur Thompson, Cason Wallace, Anthony Black, or Taylor Hendricks will be available at that range. Yet Bufkin, a 6’4” sophomore guard who is only 19 years old (younger than Ausar Thompson, as a matter of fact), has an argument for being the most polished player from the bunch.

Bufkin averaged 14.0 points, 2.9 assists, 4.5 rebounds, and 1.3 steals per-game for the Wolverines last year. Its difficult to poke holes in his game, as Bufkin has a smooth lefty jumper (shot 35.5% from deep), a crafty finishing package (shot an absurd 71.1% at the rim), and strong potential as a point-of-attack defender (averaged 1.3 steals and 0.7 blocks per game). He’s a versatile offensive player who can attack defenses from the P&R while serving as a plus team defender on the other end.

However, I do have concerns behind his ability to serve as a lead playmaker on an NBA roster, given his score-first mentality and mediocre AST:TO rate (1.50). To his credit, Bufkin holds a decent AST/USG rate (0.80) and I tend to think that the college level and its catastrophic spacing misrepresents people’s playmaking abilities. Nonetheless, as we saw with the Denver Nuggets during the NBA Playoffs, having strong positional size is key, and Bufkin would likely match better against point guards than shooting guards.

With that said, if you were on the clock at the 9th pick and these players were available, which one would you take?


Which guard would you take with the 9th pick?

This poll is closed

  • 12%
    Kobe Bufkin
    (95 votes)
  • 13%
    Cason Wallace
    (109 votes)
  • 24%
    Anthony Black
    (187 votes)
  • 49%
    Ausar Thompson
    (388 votes)
779 votes total Vote Now