The 2017 NBA Draft class was full of big names that included the likes of Markelle Fultz, Josh Jackson, and of course Lonzo Ball. What people are yet to talk about is how the best team in the NBA could have drafted the biggest sleeper of the class. Yes, the Golden State Warriors may have once again gotten a huge steal in the draft with Oregon Ducks forward Jordan Bell. Drafted eighth overall in the second round by the Chicago Bulls, Bell was traded immediately to the Warriors for cash considerations.

The power forward really got his name out there during Oregon’s run to the Final Four, with a handful of dominant performances. Most notably in the Elite Eight game against Kansas where he scored 11 points, grabbed 13 rebounds (seven on the offensive glass), and had eight blocks, an irresistibly stacked stat sheet. Bell grabbed 12 or more rebounds in every tournament game he played in, and was a force defensively for every minute he was on the court.

Playing for the Warriors will be both a blessing and a curse for Bell this season. Being able to play with the favourites to win the Championship is always nice, but he will likely not see the hardwood as much as he would have had he stayed with the Bulls during his rookie year. This could be beneficial for him though as learning behind Draymond Green is certainly not a bad thing. Being a smaller power forward like Green, he can absorb some of the techniques Draymond uses to thrive at the position, even with a height disadvantage.

In the near future the 22-year-old could be the center in a lineup with the Big Four. If Steve Kerr runs this lineup and can make it work, the Warriors will be even more feared across the league. The only thing Golden State is missing is rim protection. Jordan Bell’s best asset is just that, interior defense and blocking shots. Maybe not this year, but by next season Bell could be playing quality minutes alongside the starters. He has shown in the NCAA tournament that he can perform under pressure, so it could be the perfect fit come crunch time where it ultimately all matters, the postseason.

Watch for Bell to break out in the next few seasons, the Warriors system could potentially be perfect for him. As long as he is given the opportunity, this is the place for him to succeed. Only time will tell if he is the biggest sleeper of the draft or not, but either way you have to watch out for Jordan Bell.

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