Jared Cunningham has been climbing draft boards as of late. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
The NBA draft is coming up on June 28 and Jared Cunningham's stock has been on the rise. The NBA draft combine has been taking place over the last two days and word is that Jared has been doing quite well. There have been some talks that the Bulls have had some discussions about taking a combo guard and Jared has been mentioned as high as their first rounder at pick 29. If he continues to do well in the combine he might actually be able to be climb into the early first round.
At the combine Jared is reported to have been working out with the point guards, although some seem to think of him as a shooting guard like NBA.com's David Aldridge who had this to say:
Cunningham played both guard positions for Oregon State during the season. At the beginning of the season the Beavers had him playing off guard; by the time the Pac 12 Tournament rolled around, he was handling the ball. But most pro scouts think he'll have to play shooting guard in the NBA -- if he makes it. He's a likely second-round pick.
"I do like him, but he's not ready," a Central Division talent evaluator said.
With Russell Westbrook making the transition to point guard quickly in the pros, players like Cunningham could get a look. But Westbrook played point guard in high school. Cunningham is still learning. And he's not Westbrook.
"He's trying to get himself prepared to play point guard on our level," a Western Conference scout said. "I think he passes the ball OK, but I don't think he's got that point guard ability where he sees plays, where he sees a guy get open three or four steps before it happens. I don't think he has that. And he's not a shooter; he's a slasher/driver, which he'll be able to do at our level."
With his current skill set Jared is more of a shooting guard, he is much more accomplished as a slasher and looking to create his own shot than as a distributor. Still his athleticism will still cause some team to pick him up in the second round who is looking for a combo guard. The range on mock drafts is fairly high, going from 35-49 as far on draft picks I could find (here is a decent compilation, but ignore all the drafts where there are duplicate numbers). Here is Jared's draft blog for anyone interested in his experience.