Andrew Wiggins is just one of many NBA draft hopefuls who has elected to skip the league's 2014 predraft combine in Chicago this week, depriving NBA decision-makers of the opportunity to conduct interviews with and physical examinations of multiple top prospects. But while the Toronto-born Wiggins — who led the Kansas Jayhawks in per-game scoring and steals and finished third in rebounding en route to a second-team All-American selection in his lone season in Lawrence — isn't working out in the Windy City, he appears to be doing a fine job of showcasing his measurables all the same, according to this shot of Wiggins demonstrating his vertical, as shared by the folks at Santa Barbara, Calif.-based sports science collective P3, who have worked in the past with a slew of NBA players, including All-Stars Deron Williams, Paul Millsap, Andrei Kirilenko and Brook Lopez.
Remember, if you would, that Wiggins measured at 6-foot-8 in shoes at the 2013 Nike Hoop Summit. That's an awful lot of air underneath 6-foot-8.
How much air, exactly, we don't know for sure. For the purposes of comparison, though, here's a split-screen of Wiggins' leap alongside one made by Utah Jazz forward and 2012 Slam Dunk Contest champion Jeremy Evans, who set the P3 vertical record with a 43-1/2-inch jump:
The difference in angle and perspective makes it tough to tell, but other indicators (like both guys' heels getting above the black paint) makes it seem like Wiggins could be in Evans' comfortably-above-40 ballpark. That is a hard ballpark to get into, even if you have tickets.
Whether Wiggins' estimable physical talents — which also include a wingspan last measured at 7 feet, excellent second-jump ability that could make him a useful helper on the offensive glass, quick feet that could help him become a plus perimeter defender at the next level, and plenty of other great stuff from this DraftExpress.com scouting video breakdown — translate into NBA stardom remains to be seen, of course. No matter how gifted he is, he will still face hurdles and obstacles, as all rookies do.
But as he and whichever team winds up drafting him high in the lottery go about the business of turning potential into reality, it's awful nice to have access to the sort of raw material that allows you to, y'know, jump clean over at least some of those hurdles and obstacles. For whatever ingredients Wiggins doesn't yet have, he does have that, and it could very well elevate him — see what I did there? — to the very top of June's 2014 NBA draft.
Front-office personnel will reportedly be able to watch Wiggins show off his springs in person next week, when he will participate in "a group workout overseen by his agency, BDA Sports, in Los Angeles on May 23," according to Sean Deveney of The Sporting News.
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