The Indiana Pacers selected UCLA’s Ike Anigbogu with the 47th pick. Anigbogu was considered a first round talent before sliding down to the Pacers.
The Pacers used their second round pick to take Anigbogu as the 47th overall pick in the 2017 NBA draft. It also was the second UCLA player taken by Indiana in this draft, as they selected T.J. Leaf in the first round.
Anigbogu was projected in the first round in some mock drafts and his slide is likely related to the knee problems he dealt with in college. However, as a second round pick, it is a low risk/high reward situation if the center can overcome that medical issue.
He is the polar opposite to Leaf in some ways as he is more of a defensive presence on the floor than an offensive one. However, he is young enough to have hope that he can develop a passable offensive game in the NBA. He’s extremely raw as he played 13 minutes a game and averaged 4.7 points and 4 rebounds with UCLA.
What Ike Anigbogu brings to the Indiana Pacers
Here is what our own Josh Padmore had to say about him before the draft.
Ike Anigbogu has the potential to become elite on the defensive end. He blocks a lot of shots, as noted before, but his agility is what’s most impressive. He moves around very well, and doesn’t just protect the paint. If he gets switched onto a pick-and-roll, Anigbogu does a great job at getting up to challenge the defender instead of staying in the paint. His positioning IQ is great for such a young man.
Speaking of how young he is, Anigbogu is 18 years old. He won’t be 19 until October. That’s good and bad. It’s good, since he has plenty of time to polish his skills. It’s bad because they need a lot of polishing.
Anigbogu finishes strong around the rim with his strong body. He did a good job of bringing a ton of energy into the game at UCLA. Due to all the easy looks he got at the rim, he shot 56.4 percent from the field.
Drafting Anigbogu could be a signal of the futures of Lavoy Allen, as well as Kevin Seraphin, as the Pacers are stocked up on big men now, even if the two new ones are raw prospects.
Anigbogu is a second round pick with first round potential, but time will tell if his knee holds up and if his game can be molded to fit into the NBA.