Discussion

Top 5 NBA prospects in West Region

Updated: March 15, 2012, 12:36 PM ET
By Chad Ford

The West Region is the weakest region in the NCAA tournament as far as NBA draft prospects.

I count only one potential lottery pick and just one other surefire first-round pick in the entire group. It doesn't mean it won't produce the NCAA champ. But as far as NBA scouts are concerned, if they're going to skip a region, this would be the one to skip.

ESPN.com has talked to multiple NBA scouts and GMs over the course of the season to give you a look at the top five NBA prospects they'll be watching in each NCAA region.

West NBA Prospects

1. Bradley Beal, SG, Fr., Florida

The Good: Beal is a pure scorer who can shoot from distance or take it to the basket. He's an excellent athlete who has the power to finish at the rim. He's a good ball handler who can play point in a pinch, and he's an excellent rebounder for a guard.

The Bad: Beal has struggled to find his range from the 3-point line. He's shooting just 33 percent from 3 for the season.

The Upside: Beal hasn't really blown anyone away with his play at Florida -- but most scouts chalk that up to the three-, sometimes four-guard offense the Gators play. Put Beal in a more conventional NBA set and teams would expect him to thrive. He's been in the top six on our Big Board all season, but a great tournament could move him up all the way to No. 2 on draft night. He's that good.

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