C.J. Wilcox believes his basketball path will help his transition to the NBA
ESPN Insider Chad Ford graded the Clippers' draft a C+ in his post-draft analysis, noting that Wilcox is a player with deep range that could help the playoff team immediately, "but didn't they draft that guy last year in Reggie Bullock?"
There will also be competition for Wilcox to earn playing time. The team's returning top options at shooting guard are Crawford, the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year Award winner last year, and J.J. Redick. What will it take for him to contribute next season?
"Beat out those other guys," Rivers said. "But maybe he could move, maybe he could play the 3 some, too. It’s a competition, it always will be, it always should be. But he has a tool that can get him on the floor. He has a couple of them: he has size and he can shoot."
Though he grew up in Utah, Wilcox — whose father Craig Wilcox played at BYU — will also have the added benefit of having family close in Los Angeles. Two years ago, they moved to San Diego.
"I wanted to stay on the West Coast from the beginning," he said. "It’s really convenient that they’re done here in San Diego and I’m a two-hour drive away from them. They’ll be able to make it to a lot of games.
"My dad’s excited because he didn’t get to see many games when I was up in Seattle. I think it’s a blessing in disguise that they ended up moving out here."
Wilcox will get his first chance to impress in game action when the Clippers open summer league play with a game against the Chicago Bulls on July 12 in Las Vegas. The L.A. team also has contests scheduled with the Miami Heat on July 14, then the Houston Rockets the next day, with games from July 16-21 to be determined.
"I definitely feel like I’ve got a lot to learn," he said. "Even though I’m 23, I still feel like my game can still expand in so many ways, which is not what you expect from a 23-year-old.
"There’s a lot of room to expand and I’m excited to be in L.A. to do that."
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