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Stephen A. Smith on why Bronny James is No. 54 in ESPN’s mock draft

Bronny James, the son of LeBron James, is clearly the most talked about and polarizing prospect in this year’s NBA draft class.

Some, especially those who are sympathetic to his father, believe the younger James has tremendous star potential despite his struggles at the University of Southern California this past season. But others believe he will have a rough time trying to make it at the next level, and the only reason he’s considered a prospect is nepotism.

ESPN has listed the younger James at No. 54 in its latest mock draft. The Los Angeles Lakers, the elder James’ current team, just happens to have the No. 55 pick.

Stephen A. Smith, one of the network’s most prominent personalities, thinks  there may be something behind the younger James’ exact ranking in that mock draft (h/t Lakers Daily).

There has been plenty of speculation on where the 19-year-old will ultimately be taken in June’s draft. While it would make sense for him to be a late second-round pick (and some may say even that would be stretching it), some teams have reportedly considered taking him in the first round.

In fact, quite a few people have placed bets on him being the No. 1 pick in the entire draft.

The younger James averaged just 4.8 points and 2.1 assists in 19.4 minutes a game while shooting just 36.6% from the field and 26.7% from 3-point range this year as a freshman with the Trojans.

Of course, many think that if a team other than the Lakers takes him in the draft, they could end up landing his father in free agency. However, he will reportedly only work out for very few teams, including the Lakers and Phoenix Suns.

Story originally appeared on LeBron Wire