2013 NBA Draft Profile: Gorgui Dieng

By Jeremy Hayes
Jamie Rhodes – USA TODAY Sports

It is hard to find true centers now in the NBA since it has become a dying breed, but there are always some prospects in the wings of the NBA Draft each season who want to prove their position can still dominate the league.

It is no different for 2012 NCAA champion Louisville center Gorgui Dieng.

Dieng stands at 6-foot-11 and was one of the core leaders for the Louisville championship team. He averaged 9.8 points per game and 9.4 rebounds per game, which is actually outstanding.

He might be the type of center that can not only be a defensive threat but also an offensive weapon down low in the paint. Defense is the name of the game, though, for Dieng, who averaged 2.5 blocks per game last season, which is enough to show that he is a threat in the defensive paint who can stop opponents from driving in the lane.

Draft range: picks 15-27

This is a huge draft range for a player, but it goes with the territory in the 2013 NBA Draft, which is a slightly weak group of prospects.

With no superstar this year, Dieng could go a little after the lottery picks or fall all the way to the end of the first round.

Draft prediction: Atlanta Hawks.

The Hawks may want to reach for Dieng as a center, since most prospects ranked around him are international centers, which many teams are wary of foreign players due to many being busts or not coming over to the United States when drafted.

Dieng could help the team right away, and if the Hawks can land a small forward with one of their back-to-back picks, it would help set up a lineup if they lose Josh Smith.

Overall prospect grade: C+

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