Philadelphia 76ers: 5 rookies Elton Brand might regret passing on

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5. Bol Bol, 44th overall pick

Bol Bol’s descent has been both saddening and surprising. Once a top-five prospect and widely projected lottery pick, the 7-foot-2 Bol slid to 44th on draft night. Injury concerns were the main culprit, as a bum foot kept Bol sidelined for much of Oregon’s 2018-19 season.

Even now, we don’t know the full nature of Bol’s injury, which makes it difficult to comfortably pronounce him a ‘steal’ for Denver. The Nuggets have taken risks on injury-prone top recruits before, though. Michael Porter Jr. fell to 14th in 2018 and projects to have a big role this season, although the circumstances are admittedly different.

The Nuggets are a contending team and can afford to practice patience with Bol. The Sixers are in a similar boat, with a deep roster and a talented frontcourt consisting of Joel Embiid and Al Horford (the latter wasn’t in Philadelphia yet, of course).

Bol signed a two-way contract, which is surprisingly light on guaranteed money for a top-50 pick with such strong pedigree. But it’s also fair to ponder whether or not Philadelphia should have prioritized an earlier pick (and perhaps a two-way deal) on Bol, rather than committing to a fire sale and using their two-way slot on Marial Shayok, the 54th pick.

If things break right and Bol can get healthy, his unique length and skill combination could have real NBA utility. He’s not only 7-foot-2, but can shoot, attack closeouts and hit touch shots in the mid-range game. His rim protection potential is obvious. He could outperform his draft slot by a drastic margin.