#18: Chris Singleton
After going international by taking Jan Vesely with the sixth pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, the Washington Wizards tabbed Chris Singleton twelve picks later with the 18th selection.
“It’s totally a dream come true,” Singleton said of being picked by the Wizards. “I’m just glad I can sit here and to be in the presence of you guys right now. Not a lot of people get to do what I do on an everyday basis and not a lot of people get to have this experience, and I’m just glad I had it.”
The 2009-10 Atlantic Coast Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Singleton brings a great deal of defensive versatility to a Wizards roster in need of help on that end of the floor. At 6-9, Singleton can defend multiple positions, from the perimeter to the post and is arguably the best defensive player in this draft.
The former Florida State standout will have to continue to improve on the offensive end of the floor, something that he has done throughout his time at FSU, although he is still a work in progress in that capacity.
“Right off the bat, it’s just my defense right now,” he said about finding a niche on the Wizards roster. “I’m a developing offensive player. Everybody knows that. My shot is getting better and my ball handling is getting better and my play handling is getting better. I feel like the team we have got, we are going to build that chemistry and just go over that hump.”
An outstanding athlete with a strong frame and good length, Singleton (and Vesely, for that matter) will be a great addition to the Wizards fast break which is led by John Wall, one of the fastest point guards in the NBA. Considering Wall’s ability to get into the paint in half-court sets, Singleton’s best offensive attribute, shooting with his feet set, should be a great fit.
The curious thing about the Wizards picking Singleton is the fact that both he and Vesely are small forwards and neither is particularly strong on the offensive end. How the Wizards will work the rotation could be quite the conundrum.
It is hard enough to be successful offensively when defenses can sag off of one player; if Vesely and Singleton are on the floor together, opposing offenses can send double-teams from a couple different spots.
Regardless of how Coach Flip Saunders works his rotation with the additions of Vesely and Singleton, both are young, athletic players who continue to add to a roster with a ton of talent.