NBA player profile: Hamidou Diallo


Freshman guard Hamidou Diallo speaks with the media during the Selection Show on Sunday, March 11, 2018 in Lexington, Ky. Kentucky will play Davidson in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday in Boise, Idaho. Photo by Hunter Mitchell.

The NBA Draft is today and as usual, John Calipari has a group of players available that NBA teams are interested in drafting.

One of which is Hamidou Diallo, a 6-6 guard who is entering the draft after his one season at Kentucky. In that season, Diallo started in all 37 games for the Cats and averaged 10 points, 3.6 and 1.2 assists per game. 

In those 37 games, Diallo showed off his crazy athleticism and the ability to defend well. Diallo’s was certainly on display at the 2018 NBA Combine, where he put up several top marks against other draft hopefuls. 

NBA Comparison

Diallo’s elite bounce, athleticism and ability to wow a crowd liken him to Terrence Ross. As Ross has grown older, he’s become more inclined to shoot the three ball, but in his younger years he had the dunker mentality. Coming out of college, Ross weighed only five more pounds and was one inch taller than Diallo is now. He only shot 3% better from deep and 3% better from the field. They had identical per-game assist numbers. They are also both very dedicated to being flashy with their dunk attempts, even if it doesn’t always work out.

Diallo’s 2018 NBA Combine stats

Diallo’s numbers at the combine earned him several workouts with teams that had middle-late first round picks, including the two teams in his home state of New York.

NBA teams Diallo worked out for in 2018: Atlanta Hawks, Chicago Bulls, Washington Wizards, Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors (most recent), Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, Brooklyn Nets, Orlando Magic, Milwaukee Bucks, Portland Trailblazers, Dallas Mavericks and the New York Knicks.

Diallo also held a pro day in Los Angeles in front of some prominent NBA executives, including the Miami Heat’s Pat Riley and the Los Angeles Lakers’ Magic Johnson

The last month has been a busy one for Diallo, but now it’s just time for him to sit back and wait for his name to be called.

Where exactly will Diallo get picked? A lot of the NBA mock drafts have Diallo coming off the board as early as the late first round, or anywhere until the middle of the second round.

All the teams that Diallo worked out for own picks in the No. 17-45 range.

Diallo’s former head coach believes that the athletic guard will get drafted in the same area he would have gotten drafted last year. 

“I’m hearing good stuff with Hami. Hami may end up going probably about where he was going to go a year ago, in that range – late first, early-middle second round,” Calipari said. “But I know this – because I’ve been with him – way more prepared to make it than he was a year ago.”

At the beginning of the season, Diallo was rumored to be a potential lottery pick, but struggles during the season caused him to slip as late as the second round in mock drafts.

The struggles might have caused the slips, but Calipari believes those struggles will help Diallo on the next level.

“What he went through is going to prepare him to make it in that league,” Calipari said. “Even though he’ll go in the same area that he probably would have gone a year ago, he’s way more prepared to make it.”

The draft is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. on Thursday and will be aired on ESPN.