The NBA Draft will be underway really soon Thursday evening. A lot of trades, rumors and shakeups have been occupying the timelines and notifications of basketball fans everywhere. Because of this, it is very uncertain of who will be drafted and traded during the NBA Draft. However there is another uncertainty going forward: Harry Giles’ ability to play in the big league. The now former Duke Blue Devil hasn’t made too much noise in his career there, and it’s because of his history of injuries.
Harry Giles’ injuries started when he was high school. He was the number one overall prospect on ESPN’s top 100 list in 2016. It was apparent that he was going to light up the league. Giles started and ended his high school career with knee injuries. He was injured in his freshman year of high school, tearing ACL, MCL, and his meniscus. In his final year at Oak Hill, he tore his ACL is his other knee.
A quote from Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski in an interview with Fox Sports is a perfect analogy of how Giles’ availability with any NBA team head coach in the NBA would be:
Giles is considered to be one of the top big men for the draft, but his injuries will be the biggest question mark. For this, he should spend some time in the G-League. His injury history could very well be compared to the Sixers Joel Embiid. Embiid was a highly touted prospect, but was injured before the 2014 draft. While he’s had flashes of success with the Sixers, but at the end of the day, he has been known for his long string of injuries. The difference being however, that Embiid was the potential No. 1 pick in the draft.
In order to have a success path and career in the pros, Giles might need to develop himself again in the G League so he can have an easier transition into the NBA than Embiid. The G League would be a great way for him to get back into playing shape without having too much pressure placed on his shoulders. Alongside that, Giles would have a smaller workload in the G League as teams play only 50 games compared to NBA squads that play 82. Perhaps the most important factor is how Giles would have a higher chance of starting more games in the G-League, which heightens his chances of going to the NBA.
It would be terrible to see another player go down early in their career because they didn’t take it easy on themselves. Sometimes it’s good to take it slow and trust the process. Everyone’s path is different, so it is no need to rush and try to make it if 1) you don’t get many minutes and 2) you don’t stay healthy, and Giles is in jeopardy of having both attached to his season. For that reason he needs to start his career in the G-League so he can start off in the right direction, and have a longer more injury-free career.