Detroit Pistons: The final case for drafting Kira Lewis Jr.

FAYETTEVILLE, AR - MARCH 9: Kira Lewis Jr. #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
FAYETTEVILLE, AR - MARCH 9: Kira Lewis Jr. #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

The NBA Draft is coming up on Wednesday. It is time to take a final look at some of the top prospects, and how they would fit with the Detroit Pistons. Here we look at the case for, and against, Kira Lewis Jr.

One of the more interesting facets of the NBA Draft is that, even though these players have not played a game in months, their stock can rise and fall dramatically during the process.

A perfect example is Alabama guard Kira Lewis Jr.

Originally thought to be a mid- to lower first round draft pick, it looks like now the Detroit Pistons could take Lewis with the No. 7 overall pick.

In late October, Hoops Hype aggregate of mock drafts had Lewis overall going 16th. One mock had him going as low as 27th, barely in the first round.

A few weeks later, it is discovered the 6-foot-3, 165-pound Lewis is not only working out for the Pistons, but other teams in the top 10 of the draft order.

The Bulls select 4th while the Knicks are right after Detroit at No. 8.

With the Pistons having used one of their precious 10 allowed workouts on Lewis, it is definitely time to give a final look at this fast-rising prospect.

Final case made: Why Detroit should draft Kira Lewis Jr.

Lewis is fast – like really, really fast.

In a draft with no sure superstars, having a quality above anyone else, makes a player stand out even more.

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Fast guards are always prized in the NBA. But Lewis is not just a one-trick pony, he can do other things besides lead a fast break.

He hit a decent percentage last year on three-pointers (36.6%) at Alabama. He was third in the Southeastern Conference in both assists and steals.

Lewis has a 6-foot-5 wingspan so, combined with his speed, that could make him a good defensive player.

The Pistons like drafting young players, so they can develop them. Even though Lewis played two years with the Crimson Tide, he is only 19-years-old, and will not turn 20 until April.

Lewis’ game is a lot like Derrick Rose. We are NOT saying he will be as good as Rose, just that their games, particularly pre-injury Rose, are quite similar.

So, in summation, Lewis is super fast, can shoot, can handle the ball and has proven to be a decent defender. It is easy to see why he has shot up in everyones’ evaluations.

It would not be stunning if the Pistons took Lewis at No. 7, which is something most draftniks would not have said even a month ago.

Final arguments: The case against drafting Kira Lewis Jr,

The biggest strike against Lewis is his body frame. That is most likely why, at the start of the draft process, he ranked so low.

Being 6-3 is an OK height for a point guard, but 165 pounds most likely will not cut it in the rough and tumble NBA. Being of average height with a slight frame is a big 🚨 (red light) for most NBA teams.

As an example, the Pistons’ Derrick Rose is a former No. 1 overall draft pick and is only 6-feet-2. However, he weighs 200 pounds, 35 more than Lewis. Boston’s Kemba Walker is a four-time All-Star and stands just 6-foot, but he weighs in at 184.

Lewis understands this and is drinking a lot of protein shakes. He says he has gotten up to as much as 180 pounds. Of course, the gained weight presents another issue for the Pistons and other clubs to consider.

Lewis’ game is based on speed. If bulking up takes away any of his blazing speed, it really does not help.

Remember, since Lewis is just 19, his body may fill out naturally.

The other thing to consider is how much can you extrapolate from Lewis’ time at Alabama. He did great last season, averaging 18.5 points a game.

However, the Crimson Tide had a new coach who pushed an up-tempo style. Lewis was playing in a system perfect for his set of skills, but the NBA is not all run and gun. Lewis would need to learn how to contribute in a half-court game as well.


There is a lot to like about Lewis. Super fast ball-handling guards who can score do not grow on trees.

But you have to be wary about prospects’ who shoot up on people’s draft boards months after playing their last college game. Lewis was considered a mid-first round pick, at best, after his sophomore season at Alabama. Why is he now talked about as a possible top 5 pick?

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The recent urge of interest in Lewis does not disqualify him from being selected high. Teams can also get burned taking the obvious pick (see Fultz, Markelle).

If Detroit does indeed draft Lewis, it will be much less of shock than it would have been even a couple months ago.