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NBA

Rockets select Jabari Smith Jr. third overall in 2022 NBA Draft

While Jabari Smith Jr. entered the NBA Draft week as the betting favorite to go No. 1, the Magic selected Duke’s Paolo Banchero instead.

Update:
While Jabari Smith Jr. entered the NBA Draft week as the betting favorite to go No. 1, the Magic selected Duke’s Paolo Banchero istead.
Arturo HolmesGetty

The 2022 NBA Draft is here.

58 NBA hopefuls will hear their names called after a whole month of events, draft lottery, and draft combine. And the way the event started in Brooklyn tells us it is only going to continue to surprise us from here. The Orlando Magic selected Duke’s Paolo Banchero with the No. 1 pick to start the night, even though they were widely expected to select Jabari Smith instead. So where did Auburn forward end up?

Follow along as we continue to bring you the full list with every pick of the 2022 NBA Draft from the Barclays Center.

Jabari Smith just got drafted by the Rockets

After days of rumor and back and forth, the Rockets selected Jabari Smith Jr. third overall in the 2022 NBA Draft. Smith was the clear “best player on the field” with elite shooting and elite defense. Not only is selecting him a certain win for the Rockets, but it’s also a great complement to Jalen Green.

Smith, however, needs to develop is as a ball-handler. If he really wants to grow as an NBA player, he’s going to have to thrive as an individual shot-creator. Playing for Orlando would’ve gotten him to play on a team without a guard, which would’ve helped him confront that shortcoming. But he’s now on a team that might help him have a better future overall.

Follow along for live updates on the NBA Draft as our very own Dane Arlaukas brings you all the action straight from Brooklyn.

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