Risacher, Sarr, Salaün… who are the French in the Draft?

Risacher, Sarr, Salaün… who are the French in the Draft?

During the night from Wednesday to Thursday, Zaccharie Risacher and Alexandre Sarr could become number 1 in the Draft, one year after Victor Wembanyama. Presentation of the French.

Will the French do the double? One year after Victor Wembanyama, two French people can be called first to the Draft. Favorite to land at the Atlanta Hawks, holder of the 1st choice, JL Bourg-en-Bresse winger Zaccharie Risacher is on a favorable waiver with American pivot Donovan Clingan from the University of UConn. Two very different profiles which correspond to the needs of the Georgia State franchise which do not seem interested in the other Habs expected on the podium: Alexandre Sarr.

The 19-year-old interior player, who played for Real Madrid and the Perth Wildcats in Australia, is tipped to take second place in the Draft, according to experts at specialized media ESPN. Analyst Jonathan Givony explained that the Bordeaux native is “Locked” by the Washington Wizards (2nd choice) while he did not do a work-out – specialized training in French – with the Hawks.

A destination which could allow Bilal Coulibaly to form a French duo with Sarr. Two complementary players on defense who would do good for the third worst defense in the NBA. However, the two French nuggets, who should be among the first three to shake hands with NBA commissioner Adam Silver, are not the only players from France to present themselves for the Draft, Wednesday June 26 and Thursday June 27.

Zaccharie Risacher

An essential player for JL Bourg-en-Bresse in the Eurocup and in the Betclic Élite play-offs, the 19-year-old prodigy delivered a solid season in France. Skillful at three points and capable of showing great defensive qualities, the 2m07 winger was the best hope of the French championship. A trophy which rewarded a promising season with 10.1 points, 3.8 rebounds, at 35.2% from a distance. Able to play in positions 1 and 2, he could be a good complement to Atlanta’s star point guard Trae Young, not known for his defensive qualities. However, he is in competition with UConn center Donovan Clingan (13 points, 7.4 rebounds and 2.5 blocks) who measures 2 m 18. Double university champion, he is the other favorite for the No. 1 for American specialists.

Projection d’ESPN : 1er aux Atlanta Hawks

Alexandre Sarr

The uncertainty of the Draft and the behind-the-scenes discussions to set up trades between the franchises can still hold surprises and thwart ESPN’s predictions. However, it seems that the former Perth Wildcats interior can hardly get off the podium and that the absence of a test with the Hawks would lead him directly to Washington, a franchise with which he had an interview. The interior peaks at 2 m 16 and has one of the best defensive profiles of this 2024 vintage. With 1.5 blocks in 17 minutes in Australia, the Bordeaux player also showed abilities on the other side of the field by turning at 21 points average against G League Ignite, an American team made up of local talent.

ESPN Projection: 2nd to Washington Wizards

Tidjane Salaün

At 2.05 m and 99 kg, the athletic profile of the player trained in Cholet is of interest to NBA franchises. Author of 19 points and 8 rebounds in Game 1 of the Betclic Élite quarter-finals against Paris, Janelle Salaün’s brother should become the 8th Choletais to join the NBA after Rudy Gobert, Mickaël Gelabale or Nando De Colo. His progress throughout the season has allowed him to attract recruiters across the Atlantic with a potential place in the top 10. The strong winger could join Victor Wembanyama in Texas, because the Spurs have the 8th choice. But the 18-year-old hopeful is still seen as a diamond to be polished by some leaders, according to ESPN.

Projection d’ESPN : 12e à Oklahoma City Thunder

Pacôme Dadiet

Exiled in Germany, the 18-year-old winger earned points during the Draft Combine, a series of tests over several days in which the majority of players registered for the Draft participated. Invited by many franchises for tests, he showed great skill behind the three-point line across the Rhine with 39.1% success at Ratiopharm Ulm for 6.8 points in 15.4 minutes. Projected at the end of the first round, he could be the fourth Frenchman to be chosen in the first round which would ensure him a guaranteed contract. Its destination remains to be seen.

ESPN Projection: 30th to Boston Celtics

Melvin Ajinça

Alexis Ajinça’s cousin intends to make a place for himself in the NBA. His performances at the U19 World Cup were 2nd best scorer in the competition (19.3 points) before having a less flamboyant season at Saint-Quentin with 9.3 points, 3.3 rebounds and 0.8 assists. But the winger still has a lot of room for improvement ahead of him and he could make his appearance in the second round during the night from Thursday to Friday.

Projection d’ESPN : 47e aux Orlando Magic

But also…

Armel Traoré and Mohammed Diarra are also registered for the Draft. Projected in 65th position – outside the 58th and last place in the Draft -, the strong winger from ADA Blois was one of the best players of the season with the promoted team. But his shooting difficulties are cooling the franchises. Playing in the same position, Mohammed Diarra participated in the NCAA Final Four in the United States with NC State University. But he is not part of ESPN’s projections, which does not exclude him from the 58 players who will be called up for the 2024 Draft.


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