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NBA Teams Panned Shaedon Sharpe Before Blazers Picked Him

Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports indicates that Portland’s vision for their rookie may have been unique.

Indiana Pacers v Portland Trail Blazers Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images

The Portland Trail Blazers seemed overjoyed to select shooting guard Shaedon Sharpe with the 7th pick of the 2022 NBA Draft. Sharpe’s boundless athleticism and occasional brilliant performances have seemed to validate the use of a lottery pick on him. In his latest podcast, Yahoo Sports reported Jake Fischer indicated that the feeling was not universal among NBA teams who worked out Sharpe prior to the draft.

Speaking with Ava Wallace of the Washington Posts, Fischer indicated that every team but Portland took the most negative view possible on Sharpe, leaving open the possibility that he would drop to the middle rungs of the draft had Portland not taken him. Fischer also indicated that Portland’s vision has been validated by Sharpe’s performances so far.

At the 31:00 mark of the show, Wallace asked if there was anything exciting about Portland, in particular. Fischer responded with this:

I’m very excited about Shaedon Sharpe... I don’t know what happened, but every team outside of Portland that he worked out for gave him the most negative review possible for his workout in terms of body language, energy, interview, production. If you asked every team outside of Portland, he was falling and maybe could have fallen to the teens. But sure enough, he goes seven, and then come, what was it? The very first game of Summer League he backed out... or a shoulder thing was in play Nate was calling him out, he was like subtweeting him in his interview, saying, “You’ve got to play games.” There was a lot of concern about if Shaedon Sharpe was anything more than an idea. And now he’s already showing flashes of legitimate, crazy upside in the NBA that all of a sudden people are like, “Oh yeah, the talent and the upside that could have clearly... people said he had the talent and upside that could have been worthy of the number one pick in this year’s draft. If this can continue, the Warriors are in an interesting spot in that they’ve got Jordan Poole waiting in the wings whenever Steph Curry does hang it up. They have Anfernee Simons and Shaedon Sharpe waiting, I mean, Simons is already the Robin to Dame’s Batman. If he can move up one rung on the totem pole and Sharpe can either be his 1B or his number two, it’ll be an interesting opportunity for a small market like that, that does pride itself in being in the postseason picture.

Sharpe is averaging 8.0 points and 2.4 rebounds in 20.1 minutes per game for the Blazers this season in 23 appearances.