The Atlanta Hawks finished Thursday’s NBA draft by selecting Alpha Kaba, a 6’10” center out of France, with the final pick at No. 60 overall. Kaba played for Mega Leks in Serbia last season, playing 51 games in all competitions and averaging 10.3 points and 8.3 rebounds per contest.
Kaba is an enormous center, with a 7’5” wingspan and weighing in at 230 pounds, but doesn’t have the technical skills to survive in the NBA at this point. He’ll likely be stashed overseas for a year or two (and GM Travis Schlenk indicated this was the plan) for more development on his shooting, finishing around the rim, and defensive consistency.
Already a solid rebounder, Kaba needs to leverage his size and athleticism and develop the more nuanced parts of his game, from speeding up his release to using his length well defensively and not committing as many fouls.
At the end of the second round, it’s rare for a team to find a real contributor and the Hawks will be able to stash Kaba overseas for a few years while he continues to grow into his game. He’s just 21 years old and has the body and athleticism that could survive in the league, but getting more experience under his belt will be important if he is to make the move over to the NBA.