2021 NBA Draft Prospect Jalen Green Demands a Kobe Bryant Comparison from His Rookie Year Itself

Published 07/05/2021, 10:36 PM EDT
Jerry West, GM, Kobe Bryant and Head Coach Del Harris (Photo by Steve Grayson/WireImage)


As the 2020-21 season reaches its closure, the draft prospects of 2021 are becoming mainstream for discussions. With the Pistons, Rockets, Cavaliers, and Raptors acquiring the lottery picks, it will be interesting to scrutinize their picks. Also, none of these teams would want to err just as the first 12 teams did in the 1996 Draft by not picking Kobe Bryant.

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In 2018, DeAndre Ayton (#1 pick) and Trae Young (#5 pick) entered the league and within just three years, tasted astonishing success. This showed how the draft picks can be crucial for small/mid market teams that want to quickly go big. Now, there’s one budding talent promising such success to whichever team that shows faith in him, and the name is Jalen Green.

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Is the league ready to welcome its next Kobe Bryant?

Jalen Green is a 19-YO Californian who is certainly a big name in the draft class of 2021. A 5-star recruit and an elite teenage shooting guard, Jalen has a high ceiling and any team can benefit from his confidence. 

In a recent interview, his San Joaquin Memorial High School coach, Brad Roznovosky, revealed the young gun’s mentality. The coach expressed, “He’s always said he wants to be No. 1. He wants to be compared to Kobe. If you asked Jalen today, he can tell you that you’re crazy if you don’t take him No. 1.”

Kobe Bryant, a 6’6” star played 17/20 of his playing years as a shooting guard and that’s where the 6’5” Jalen compares closely. However, there’s a gap in their numbers. Playing for the Lower Merion, Kobe Bryant had averaged a phenomenal 30.8 points, 12 rebs, 6.5 assists, 4 steals, and 3.8 blocks in his senior year. On the other hand, Jalen averaged 17.9 points, 4.1 boards, and 2.8 assists at 46.1% field shooting with his G League Ignite. 

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Jalen vs Jalen

Although Jalen Green is convinced that he is a sure shot #1 pick, there are other names making the challenge. Jalen Suggs, for one, is a promising point guard that is up for the grabs this summer. The 20-YO Minnesota native played a combo player’s role during his stint with the Gonzaga Bulldogs.

The struggling Pistons are in a dire need of someone who can take care of the offense and also help with shot creation. Although Green promises athleticism and long-range shot making, they might also consider Suggs’ paint scoring, playmaking, and defensive abilities. 

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Apart from these two, Cade Cunningham also makes the cut because of his pick-and-roll and ball handling skills. But the idea behind a selection will have a lot to do with fitting around other players in a team.

So what do you think, can Jalen Green be as effective as KB in his rookie year? Help us know in the comments.

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Watch this story – Anthony Davis and Other Star Players That Kobe Bryant Mentored

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Sourabh Singh

1413 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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