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Potential lottery pick Sam Dekker declares for NBA draft

APTOPIX NCAA Duke Wisconsin Final Four Basketball

Wisconsin’s Sam Dekker looks at a camera during the first half of the NCAA Final Four college basketball tournament championship game Sunday, April 5, 2015, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Tim Donnelly)


Wisconsin junior Sam Dekker was a strong NBA prospect before the NCAA tournament.

But his play in leading Wisconsin to the championship game – despite a clunker in the final against Duke – shined an even brighter light on skills.

Now, it’s time to capitalize.

Jeff Goodman of ESPN:

Dekker, a 6-foot-9 forward, has excellent size and good athleticism for his position.

He has a reputation as an elite outside shooter, something bolstered during Wisconsin’s tournament run. But he shot just 33 percent on 3-pointers this year and last, down from 39 percent as a freshman.

His real skill is using his strong ball-handling and excellent movement to find and make shots all over the court – without turning the ball over. He made 64 percent of his 2-pointers last season.

Dekker can guard multiple positions, a real asset in a league that is more frequently switching on pick-and-rolls.

Offensively, his aggressiveness can fluctuate, and he doesn’t get to the free-throw line much.

But the positives outweigh the negatives, and Dekker should go in the middle of the first round – maybe even in the lottery.