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2016 NBA Draft: Pelicans could swing for the fences by drafting Kris Dunn

Athleticism? Upside? Check and check.

Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Should the New Orleans Pelicans select Kris Dunn?

Kevin: If everyone outside of Simmons and Ingram are still available my pick is Kris Dunn. Dunn gives the Pelicans good size at the one, allowing Jrue Holiday to play off the ball in some situations. Dunn has a very quick first step, which I think is crucial in a college scorer's transition into the NBA. He thrives in the drive and kick method of creating, much like Tyreke Evans. However, Tyreke uses strength and patience to set up his attack while Dunn uses his speed and shiftiness. If Dunn is selected, it does make Evans much more expendable, which may allow the front office to flip him for other pieces.

Isaac: Here, I have to say no. I like the guy a lot; his defensive aggressiveness and competitiveness are something that many NBA players could learn from. Offensively, he was stellar in college, but unlike Hield, I'm anticipating the league's defenders and their propensity for adjustments will give Dunn some difficultly, at least initially. And while Hield was constantly scoring despite a defensive squadron glued to him, it seemed to me like once people learned Kris Dunn's name, he folded. He's a top ten player of course, but a 1-8 game against Villanova and a duo of seven-turnover games against Marquette and Xavier are indicative to possible NBA road bumps, ones that might prevent him from being worthy of a sixth pick.

David: I love the idea of Kris Dunn. Dunn has legitimate potential to be a star, a hyper-athletic point guard who is a menace on defense and makes beautiful music in the pick and roll with Anthony Davis. The fit in New Orleans I think is easier than most; either Dunn or Jrue Holiday can make it work off the ball and Holiday excelled in lineups with two point guards over the years. I understand why Dunn is so high on so many boards; the physical tools as a point guard mean he'll stick in the league no matter what and if he can take care of his negatives he has superstar potential.

Those negatives, however, worry me greatly. Can Dunn shoot well enough? He shot 69% or worse from the foul line at Providence and demonstrated little improvement in four years. His 3-point shot shows some promise but on a tiny sample size with a shorter line. Additionally he is turnover prone which leads me to question his basketball IQ.

If Dunn gets the shooting and turnovers under his belt he may battle Brandon Ingram or Ben Simmons as the best prospect in this class. But, there is significant risk. I would take that risk if I ran the Pelicans, but I am unsure Dell Demps feels the same way.

Quentin: Yes, but it comes with more questions than the selection of Hield. If the Pelicans draft Dunn, then I don’t understand why they would keep Jrue Holiday. Though, it would open up a good opportunity for New Orleans to add another young talent - preferably another first round draft pick - to add to the team. Perhaps the Utah Jazz might be looking for a point guard upgrade; a deal revolving around their first round pick and another piece makes sense to me. Dunn might be able to come in right away and operate Alvin Gentry’s offense; if not, Tyreke Evans and Tim Frazier could hold the fort down until he's ready.

ZacharyI feel like taking Dunn sort of mirrors the two different paths the franchise can take this summer: do they be patient and take best available and let him mature and develop or do they go the short-sighted win now worry later route. I'd do the former. There wouldn't be pressure for Dunn to be a starter out the gate, and he could ease into being a lead point by starting off as the Pelicans' second unit ball handler. These days you can't have enough perimeter players and stocking up on a guy like Dunn could be a smart investment.

Oleh: Kris Dunn should be the selection if the draft plays out as expected with the first two picks and Buddy Hield is also off the board. Nearly all teams are looking to add versatility to their rosters in this day and age. With Dunn's combination of size, speed and skills unparalleled in this draft, he is worth the gamble despite all the questions surrounding his jumpshot, decision-making and injury history.

Personally, I feel the injury worries have been somewhat overstated, as Dunn will be over two years removed from the shoulder issues. Further -- and this doesn't get enough press -- he admitted to changing his mental approach in regards to how hard he pushes himself physically on each possession.  After he thought his career might be over following his redshirt sophomore season at Providence, it looks like he made the right decision to not follow in the footsteps of Derrick Rose. So far so good, right?

Fernando: If Jamal Murray is off the board, along with Simmons and Ingram, the Pelicans should draft Kris Dunn. He would give New Orleans a guard capable of providing excellent defense and solid decision making with the ball. Additionally, pairing him alongside Holiday would make for one of the most dynamic backcourts in the league.