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Clippers select Moussa Diabate with No. 43 pick in NBA Draft

The Clippers ended up keeping their second-round pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, taking Moussa Diabate out of Michigan.

Syndication: Detroit Free Press Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

With the No. 43 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, the Los Angeles Clippers have selected Moussa Diabate, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic:

The Clippers decided not to chase after and trade for some of the bigger names in this year’s draft, instead opting to stick with their 43rd pick. Considering the team’s plethora of guards and wings, they made the wise decision to upgrade their front court with a 6’11 forward out of Michigan.

Diabate’s upside is clear. He is a prolific finisher at the rim — he finishes at an efficient 64.8% of his shots near the rim. His length and athleticism allow him to go coast to coast, easily beating defenders down the floor. His hook shot, alongside his elite off-the-ball movement, makes him an offensive threat in the paint — not to mention, his penchant for catching offensive boards. He finished his freshman year as a Wolverine averaging nine points, as well as six rebounds, on 54.2% shooting.

On the flip side, it’s yet hard to say Diabate is cut out for the league. He shoots the ball in an unorthodox and unpleasant way, which translated to him making just 25.8% of his jumpers last year. Just as bad are his free throw percentages — the Frenchman capitalized off just 61.9% of his free throw tries last season.

Should Diabate want to secure a spot on the team’s roster, it’s clear which parts of his game he needs to improve on. Lucky for him and the Clippers, the team has had success with their recent late second-round draftees or undrafted players in recent years — namely, Terance Mann and Amir Coffey. And being on the same team with some of the best-shooting forwards like Kawhi Leonard and Marcus Morris Sr. might be exactly what he needs.

Diabate seemingly has all the tools to make him a solid role player in the league, so it’ll be up to how he adjusts and improves in Clippers colors to dictate his future with this organization, and in the league as a whole.