What Wizards GM saw in 1st round pick Corey Kispert


Though there is a lot the Wizards like about Corey Kispert, whom they selected with the 15th overall pick in the first round on Thursday night, it was really quite simple. Kispert is an elite shooter, so good the Wizards just couldn't pass him up.

"We knew he was the best shooter in the draft. We were really excited to get him," general manager Tommy Sheppard said. 

"We didn't know where he would fall. The fact he was there on the board at 10, we started looking around to see what we needed to do to move up. We decided this would be a great opportunity to sit still and there he was."

Kispert, 22, is not just a good three-point shooter, he has the chance to be elite. At Gonzaga he shot 44.0% from three on 6.5 attempts per game as a senior and 43.8% on 5.4 attempts as a junior. 

Kispert made threes with efficiency and in volume and he did it over the course of a large sample size. In four years in college, he shot 40.8% on 4.8 attempts per game. 

"Our shooting should be pretty fun next year. Him, Bradley [Beal] and Davis Bertans will be fun to watch," Sheppard said.

Sheppard referred to Kispert's three-point shooting as an "elite superpower." But it will take more than accuracy for Kispert to make the most of that skill. He will have to get open shots, either by creating them himself or by coming off screens.


Sheppard believes Kispert will be able to do that quickly in the NBA.

"I think if you watch his game, he's someone that is in perpetual motion. He knows how to get open, how to create space. The gravity shooters, they know what to do," Sheppard said.

Sheppard also lauded Kispert's defense and leadership skills. He said it is a plus that Kispert played four years in college, as it should prepare him to make an early impact at the NBA level.

That would be good for a Wizards team hoping to be back in the playoffs this season.