UCLA’s Jaquez into draft after ‘remarkable journey’

UCLA star Jaime Jaquez will declare for the 2023 NBA draft and forgo his remaining college eligibility, he told ESPN on Thursday.

“I had an incredible journey finishing from UCLA,” Jaquez said. “I want to thank all my coaches, teammates and personnel for helping me along this journey.”

Jaquez, the No. 34 prospect in ESPN’s NBA draft projections, was a consensus All-American, the Pac-12 Gamer of the Year and winner of the Lute Olson National Player of the Year award.Editor’s Picks

  • 1 Related “My objective when enrolling at UCLA was never personal accolades,” Jaquez said. “It was to restore UCLA to basketball conversations. When I was growing up, there were some down years. I wanted to move the program back in the right direction. I didn’t think I would remain in this position when I graduated.”

    Jaquez averaged 17.8 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game, leading UCLA to a Pac-12 champion and a No. 2 seed in the NCAA tournament. UCLA made its third successive Sweet 16 look, losing on a last-second shot to Gonzaga, with Jaquez posting 29 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals.Jaquez, who assisted UCLA make the NCAA Final 4 in 2021, ranks in the program’s top 10 in career points and steals and is 11th in rebounds. He was a two-time first-team All-Pac-12 selection and a two-time all-defensive group member.A senior, Jaquez could have returned for a fifth year thanks to the additional year of eligibility given to all student-athletes in 2020 after the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. “I knew this was my last year at UCLA being available in,”Jaquez stated.”It never crossed my

    mind, returning. I wanted to do everything I could to win a championship game, however I take pride in whatever we accomplished in my 4 years here.”Bruin 4 life pic.twitter.com/1nvJZCKvsE!.?.!— Jaime Jaquez Jr(@jaquez_jr )April 6, 2023 At 6-foot-7 with a 6-foot-11 wingspan, Jacquez is attractive to NBA groups due to the fact that of the method he adds to winning with his productivity, feel for the game, protective impulses

    , toughness and two-way flexibility. He played a range of functions at UCLA, operating as a primary ball handler and offensive playmaker while safeguarding everyone from point guards through centers.Jaquez says he understands he’ll be asked to play a different role in the NBA than how he was used as the centerpiece in UCLA’s offense.”It’s going to be a smooth shift due to the fact that I know how to have fun with other great players, whether it

    ‘s defending the other group’s best player, tearing down open shots, or being a playmaker and facilitator,”Jaquez said.” I’m an underrated

    passer. I think in my shooting and the work I put in. I know I can shoot the ball. I’ll do whatever, as long as we win.”Jaquez, who is Mexican American, was invited to U.S.A. Basketball camps on 4 celebrations in between the age of 15 to 17, however he elected to represent the Mexican nationwide team at the Pan Am Games in 2019. He got a call-up to Mexico’s senior team and states he expects to

    represent Mexico in FIBA competitions moving forward.The NBA draft integrate will be held May 15-21 in Chicago, and the draft will be June 22 in Brooklyn.” Wherever I get drafted, I do not care, “Jaquez stated.”I’m going to make some sort of impact. Individuals are going to feel like I impacted their company. Jimmy Butler, Josh Hart … those are the men I study.

    They have a various mentality; they play to win.” Jonathan Givony is an NBA draft specialist and the creator and co-owner of DraftExpress.com, a personal searching and analytics service used by NBA, NCAA and international groups.

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