Recent history of the 5th pick should give Pistons fans hope

2023 NBA Draft
2023 NBA Draft / Sarah Stier/GettyImages
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Jalen Suggs/ 2021 /Orlando Magic

Gonzaga star Jalen Suggs didn't show immediate results that the Orlando Magic were expecting when they selected him with the fifth pick in the 2021 draft. Struggling to stay on the floor consistently, Suggs only played 101 of 164 games in his first two seasons, and with the team drafting a tandem of guards in Anthony Black and Jett Howard in 2023 alongside adding Markelle Fultz and Cole Anthony prior, Suggs found himself in a position where he needed to separate himself from the crowd if he wanted to get minutes.

It seems as if Suggs knew that, as this past season he cemented himself as a key piece to the Magic's bright future. Starting in every game he played, Suggs earned himself a spot on the NBA All-Defensive Second team - the first Magic player to do so since Dwight Howard in 2012.

The 22-year old proved his worth to be most notable on the defensive end and helped lead the team to a seven game series against the Cleveland Cavaliers, helping blow the young team's expectations out of the water. This season was also full of career-bests in nearly every aspect of his game, setting new highs in points per game. shooting percentages, steals, along with having a career high defensive rating of 110.4, which was top three amongst guards in that field.

With a massive year three jump, Suggs showed that sometimes patience is key when waiting on development of high-expectation players.