Justin Jackson is a potential steal in the second round of the 2018 NBA Draft. Should the Toronto Raptors look into acquiring him?
Justin Jackson out of the University of Maryland is someone the Raptors should consider trading/buying back into the 2018 NBA draft for. He just turned 21 years old and has elite measurements for a modern NBA forward.
Jackson measured 6’6.75” (in shoes) with a 7’3” wingspan and 8’9” standing reach at last month’s draft combine. This is slightly shorter than he measured at the combine a year ago (6’7”, 7’3.25” and 8’11” respectively).
Jackson played two seasons at Maryland. During his freshman season, he averaged 10.5 points and 6.0 rebounds per game, while shooting 43.8 percent from long-range (on 105 attempts). Last season, due to injuries and other factors, Jackson’s offensive numbers took a slight dip. His three-point percentage dropped to just 25-percent, a clear sign that his shoulder was impacting him.
Jackson looks the part of a small ball four. He is mobile, can space the floor and draw his defender away from the basket.
Jackson has the potential to be a two-way player. He is a good defender. During his time at Maryland, he averaged 1.2 steals and 1.1 blocks per 40 minutes. At 229 pounds, he has the strength and size to contend with bigger and more physical players.
Last season, Jackson decided to test the waters and declared for the NBA Draft. Jackson worked out for a number of teams, including the Toronto Raptors. Ultimately, Jackson withdrew his name and decided to return to college to improve his game.
Jackson does not come without his downsides. At 21 years old he is actually older than many prospects and he does have a somewhat worrisome medical record.