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Potential top-10 pick Tyrese Haliburton declares for NBA draft

Iowa State guard Tyrese Haliburton declares for NBA draft

AMES, IA - NOVEMBER 12: Tyrese Haliburton #22 of the Iowa State Cyclones drives the ball in the second half of play at Hilton Coliseum on November 12, 2019 in Ames, Iowa. The Iowa State Cyclones won 70-52 over the Northern Illinois Huskies. (Photo by David K Purdy/Getty Images)

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Iowa State keeps producing unconventionally alluring NBA draft prospects.

Last year, it was Talen Horton-Tucker, whom the Lakers got with the No. 46 pick.

This year, it’s Tyrese Haliburton, who could go much higher in the draft.

Jonathan Givony and Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

Iowa State sophomore guard Tyrese Haliburton is entering the 2020 NBA draft, he told ESPN on Tuesday.

Haliburton projects as a lottery pick despite his unusual physical profile.

The 6-foot-5 guard weighs just 175 pounds. He’s not secretly wirily strong. He’s not explosive.

Maybe he gets to the NBA and gets pushed around. Maybe he gets into the NBA, bulks up in a professional training program and becomes a high-level contributor.

There’s already plenty to like.

Haliburton possesses elite basketball intelligence, which particularly shines in his court vision. He often pushes the pace, creating opportunities to show off his passing against scrambled defenses.

In the halfcourt, he’s an effective spot-up shooter despite iffy mechanics. He struggles to get all the way to the rim and draw fouls on the ball. Instead, he relies on an impressive floater.

Haliburton might not have the scoring chops in the pick-and-roll to be a lead guard in the NBA. But he could be an awesome fit next to a scoring guard.

Defensively, Haliburton uses his length well to generate blocks and steals. Again, his lack of brawn can be a detriment. But he’s just 20. He’ll get stronger, though the big question is how much.