Status: UK freshman
Shooting guard | 6-5 | 188
School: Putnam Science (Conn.)
Hometown: Queens, N.Y.
One of the most exciting prospects in the 2017 class, Diallo is an athletic, high-flying perimeter player who excels at getting to the basket and finishing in an entertaining fashion.
Diallo graduated from high school last spring, committed to Kentucky in January and has joined the team for the remainder of the 2016-17 season. He’s not expected to suit up for the Wildcats this winter, but he has been practicing with the team, getting acclimated to college life and working with the training staff off the court. Diallo’s intention is to make his UK debut in the 2017-18 season with his fellow class of 2017 recruits, though he will be eligible for the 2017 NBA Draft.
Kentucky beat out UConn, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas and Syracuse for Diallo’s commitment. The Huskies were the main competition, and Kevin Ollie recruited Diallo as hard as anyone over the past few years, also coaching him with the Team USA U18 squad last summer.
Diallo, who has a 6-11 wingspan, has a high ceiling as a perimeter defender but still needs to fine-tune his outside jumper. Diallo shot just 20.0 percent from three-point range during the Nike summer season.
Diallo averaged 19.1 points and 5.8 rebounds per game for New York Rens on the Nike circuit.
Diallo graduated from high school last spring and is eligible for this year’s NBA Draft, but he is not currently listed in the DraftExpress.com mock draft for 2017. He’s also not in the DraftExpress.com mock draft for 2018.
“Everything you can’t teach, this kid has it at the highest level, which makes him gifted. But what makes him special is his work ethic. He’s not a kid that’s just relying on his athleticism. He’s really a kid working on his game. And the more he works on it … the more of a nightmare he’s going to be against anyone he plays against.”
— Andy Borman, AAU coach