Weight: 203 lbs
Position: Small Forward/ Shooting Guard
Strengths: Athleticism, Basketball IQ, Shot Blocking, Defense, Versatility
Jackson is very athletic and crafty at the basket. His moves around the rim are beautiful to watch. He is very quick, allowing him to get easy baskets in transition.
As freshman, Jackson showed that he has a great basketball IQ. Not being the main ball handler at Kansas, Jackson still averaged 3 assists and knew where his teammates where on the court.
Using his incredible 6’9″ wingspan, Jackson is a great shotblocker, averaging 1.1 blocks per game. He can contest shots one-on-one and coming over the weak side using his quickness.
Jackson is very aggressive on the defensive lane, which is a good asset to have as a wing in the NBA. His ability to disrupt the passing lane leads to opponents’ turnover and easy buckets on the fast break. He’s not a shutdown defender, but with his bull collar mentality, it will surely translate into the NBA.
Jackson is very versatile too. He can fit in multiple positions, showing his great work ethic and skillset. He can put at shooting guard or small forward, and will still be effective as a wing slasher.
Weaknesses: Shooting, Maturity, Foul Trouble
Obviously, Jackson’s biggest weakness is his shooting. While posting a 51% FG percentage is solid, a 56% free throw percentage is not going to cut it in the NBA. His shot is by no means broken, But his mechanics must be fixed in order for him to be effective in the NBA.
His maturity needs work too. In February, he and his former teammate LaGerald Vick allegedly damaged the car of Vick’s ex-girlfriend McKenize Calvert. After the announcement, Jackson did community service, took an anger management course, and paid for all the damage. If he wants to have a successful career in the NBA, he needs to stay out of trouble off the court.
Jackson must also learn to stay out of foul trouble. Although his aggressiveness helps him on defense, it also leads to him getting into foul trouble all too frequently. Jackson averaged an alarming three fouls per game and earned more than three fouls 10 out of Kansas’ final 15 games.
NBA Player Comparison: Kawhi Leonard
San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard is the perfect comparison to Jackson. Both are great on the defensive end, have great knowlege of the game, and will do the dirty work for their teams.
Where Will He Go: #3 To The Boston Celtics
It seems the Boston Celtics will likely pick up Jackson on draft night. There has been speculation about GM Danny Ainge trying to trade away the picks for a star like Jimmy Bulter or Gordon Hayward, but Jackson fits Brad Stevens’ system well enough to select him with the third pick. He is just that typical Celtic player that works hard and and wears the green with pride. On draft night, expect the Celtics to pick Jackson at #3.