Maryland center Alex Len had been moving up draft boards — big men always move up the board and Len is 7’1” and skilled, with a good touch around the basket. DraftExpress had him going No. 7.
I say had because news came out Friday that Len had ankle surgery that will sideline him into next season, something tweeted by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.
This could drop him a little, but likely not that much so long as team doctors are convinced this is something he can recover from, something that will not be chronic.
If you’re looking for positives, early in the season he looked great against the likely No. 1 overall pick Nerlens Noel. But Lee has had an up-and-down season. The questions revolve around his strength and toughness.
But in a draft full of risks, teams are more willing to gamble on true centers with a deft scoring touch inside. He’s the kind of big you can see as a solid rotation player in a couple years, and there is a lot of value in that.