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Daily Brews: National media gives grades for Magic, Clippers after selecting Houstan, Diabate

The consensus is…

NCAA Basketball: Maryland at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Two Michigan Wolverines heard their names called on Thursday during the NBA Draft. First off the board was Caleb Houstan, going No. 32 overall to the Orlando Magic. Not long after, Moussa Diabate went to the Los Angeles Clippers at No. 43.

The second-round grades for the two players are in, as the media recapped the draft, and the overall thought process among the experts about the two selections is rather indifferent. Here is what the New York Post said about the Magic’s Draft:

It’s hard to overstate the risk Orlando took in selecting Banchero first. This is a franchise that’s been essentially irrelevant for over a decade, swimming against the conventional wisdom with a decision that could make or break its future. Maybe it ends up working out in their favor. But it’s a hard sell when Jabari Smith and Chet Holmgren, two players who look like far surer things, were sitting on the board. Houstan, who underperformed drastically at Michigan, was a reach at 32 as well.

CBS Sports was a little bit higher on the Michigan wing, and they like the way he fits in with the Magic’s young core saying, “Orlando gets a quality addition with has a five-star pedigree, great positional size and high-ceiling shooting range. He had some inconsistencies during his short stint in college but could be a nice piece of depth to add to an exciting young core that includes Banchero, Franz Wagner and Jalen Suggs. I had him No. 32 in my rankings and he went No. 32. Grade: A”

Sports Illustrated’s Orlando Magic page broke down each of John Hammond’s decisions on Thursday night. While they loved the pick of Paolo Banchero at No. 1 overall, they weren’t as keen on the Houstan selection, giving the Magic a B grade:

“Houstan didn’t tear up the Big Ten like many expected him to and he fell down draft boards throughout the season. When declaring for the draft, Houstan maintained his college eligibility before receiving feedback from NBA teams. The feedback he received was enough to keep him in the draft.

“Houstan likely stayed in the draft because he has a ton of upside as a 6-8 wing that can defend and play multiple positions. There’s an untapped ceiling if he can find the magic that made him a top-10 high school recruit, but he’s going to have to earn minutes in a crowded wing rotation if he wants to get there.”

Moving on to Diabate, the New York Post liked his upside and gave the pick a B grade, saying, “Diabate is very much a project, but one that’s as much worth a flier at 43 as any. At 6-foot-10, 210 pounds, the Frenchman very much needs to gain some muscle to fill out his frame, but if he does so, has the kind of athleticism that could make a difference. He had some encouraging flashes for the Wolverines last season, but might have benefitted from another year in Ann Arbor. Still, if the Clippers can develop him, he has the kind of talent to make a lot of teams look bad.”

One of the biggest skeptics of Diabate was how raw of a talent he is. Most fans in Ann Arbor saw that for the majority of the season. CBS Sports agreed with their assessment of the big man who went No. 43 overall:

“Diabate would have benefited from one more college season. He has an interesting pedigree profile as a former five-star recruit to go with good size for a big man, but outside of a go-to jump-hook, he lacks polish as an offensive weapon and is still pretty raw. Grade: C+”

Overall, these two received grades across the national media that should be expected with second-round picks. Pretty much anyone in that realm has talent and shows flashes of being NBA ready, but have several question marks to go along with them. I think it is safe to say that is the case for both Houstan in Orlando and Diabate with the Clippers.