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Arizona’s Nico Mannion declares for 2020 NBA Draft

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: MAR 11 Pac-12 Tournament - Washington v Arizona

LAS VEGAS, NV - MARCH 11: Arizona Wildcats guard Nico Mannion (1) looks on during the first round game of the men’s Pac-12 Tournament between the Arizona Wildcats and the Washington Huskies on March 11, 2020, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Nico Mannion is declaring for the 2020 NBA Draft after one season at Arizona.

The 6-foot-3 freshman guard is expected to be a first-round pick after a promising season for the Wildcats. Mannion lived up to his five-star reputation out of high school. The McDonald’s All-American put up 14.0 points, 5.3 assists and 2.5 rebounds per game.

Mannion proved himself to be a capable offensive threat and solid overall athlete this season. The second game of the season, Mannion scored 21 points and tallied nine assists against a talented Illinois team. It set the stage for a solid season overall for Mannion. He was one of the most consistently productive freshman guards in the country.

In the latest CBT 2020 NBA mock draft, Rob Dauster has Nico Mannion going No. 14 overall in the first round. Shooting is one area to watch with Mannion’s draft stock. Although Mannion was productive, he only shot 39 percent from the floor and 32 percent from three-point range this season. Mannion was also the lead guard when Arizona blew some close games during this season. But at only 19 years old, Mannion has plenty of time to correct those mistakes.

Nico Mannion also has experience playing for the Italian national team. During the 2019 FIBA World Cup, Mannion became the fourth-youngest player ever to suit up for Italy’s top national team. So he also has some experience training and playing against professional players heading into the draft process.

In a draft that doesn’t feature a lot of high-end talent, Mannion’s high floor could be his strongest attribute. While Mannion won’t blow any teams away with one particular skill, he’s steady at pretty much everything.