Keyontae Johnson

Five sleepers to look out for in the 2023 NBA Draft

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With the upcoming NBA Draft just a handful of days away from now, we can start talking about the NBA Draft sleepers 2023. These guys have spent most of the process flying under the radar, either because of their age or the role they played in college.

For those who aren’t that familiar with the term, being a sleeper means being a player who’s been slept on. Those players are often overlooked and go late in the first round, the second round, or undrafted, and wound up proving the scouts wrong by having long and successful careers in the league.

The Miami Heat, for example, have made a living out of sleepers. They made it to the NBA Finals with multiple undrafted players on their roster, proving that rankings sometimes are meaningless and that a positive fit and environment might be everything a player needs to thrive, even if he doesn’t turn out to be a superstar.

NBA Draft sleepers 2023

We’ve seen multiple players outplay their draft stocks in their careers. Teams are hesitant to take guys who’ve been in college for multiple years, as they seem to have a lower ceiling and won’t turn out to be stars, unlike the one-and-done prospects.

With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of five young men that could turn out to be impactful players in the league right away. Their skill sets are perfect for today’s game, and most of them could be plug-and-play guys in most teams.


They may not be the flashiest or most sought-after guys in the college basketball scene, but they might well be just what your team needs at a reasonable price and available late in the draft. Buckle up as we introduce you to the top five sleepers in this year’s NBA Draft class.

5. Jordan Miller – F, Miami

Jordan Miller starts our list of potential second-round picks to watch in 2023 NBA Draft. He’s the ultimate hustler and the kind of player who’ll never give up on any possession, putting his body on the line on all 50/50 balls, and thriving as a slasher and finisher, both below and above the rim.

Miller makes winning plays on both ends of the floor. He can push the tempo as a one-man fast-break, or create for others as a playmaker. He also happens to have one of the most beautiful fadeaway jumpers in the nation, as well as being an elite rebounder for his position. The former Miami forward may not be an All-Star, but he’s a winner that does all the little things to compete.

4. Traycee Jackson-Davis – C, Indiana

Traycee Jackson-Davis has recently emerged as one of the potential late-first round picks in 2023 NBA Draft, and rightfully so. He’s one of the best rebounders in his class and an impressive athlete who often thrives as a rim runner. A constant lob threat, he could put the most dominant rim protectors in the league in a poster on any given night.

Other than that, his offensive game is somewhat limited, but that shouldn’t be that much of an issue going forward. He’s got the build to make an immediate impact in the NBA, and even though he needs to work on his free-throw shooting, he’s a much-better ball-handler than the average big man in today’s game.


3. Keyontae Johnson – SG/SC, Kansas State

Keyontae Johnson went viral in troubling circumstances, collapsing on the floor in 2020 due to a heart inflammation. He transferred from Florida to Kansas State to continue pursuing his dream of a career in the NBA, making it to the All-Big 12 First Team.

Johnson would’ve been a first-round pick if that hadn’t happened. He’s now 23 years old and missed some of his key developmental years, which is why scouts could be hesitant to take him. Still, he’s a fierce competitor with a knack for knocking down shots from everywhere and guarding multiple spots, although his decision-making isn’t exactly elite.

2. Jaime Jaquez Jr. – SF, UCLA

Jaime Jaquez Jr. might not be an impressive athlete by any means, but he could be one of the best NBA Draft sleepers 2023. He’s older than most players, but he also improved in every single year he was in college, and that trend usually translates to the pros.

He’s got excellent footwork and a nifty ability to change pace and directions combined with elite basketball IQ. His game would be perfectly suited for the 80s, and he’s a much better rebounder than the average guy in his position.

Jaquez Jr. is also a bit of a ball-hound and a complete pest as an off-ball defender. He can knock down shots from all over the court, and he’s not the kind of guy who might demand a big role right out of the gate. He should be available in the mid-second round.

1. Bilal Coulibaly – SF, France

Bilal Coulibaly isn’t only the biggest sleeper in this class but also has the potential to be one of the best NBA Draft steals ever. Everyone has obviously been mesmerized by Victor Wembanyama for obvious reasons, but his teammate has also been quite impressive and could turn out to be a legit two-way superstar.

Coulibaly has an impressive build, wingspan, and frame. He’s an NBA-ready defender who’ll only continue to grow into his body, and he knows the fundamentals of the game. His offense is still a work in progress, but he’s shown glimpses of consistent and efficient scoring from all three levels.

On top of that, he’s a young player that comes with plenty of experience going against grown men and actual professionals, so the transition to the NBA could be rather smooth. He’s quickly rising in rankings and could even climb his way into the lottery.

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