New Orleans Pelicans Pick Yves Missi in 1st Round of NBA Draft

Fleur De Lis Data News Weekly Contributor

The New Orleans Pelicans are getting ready for the 2024-25 season. It will be exciting as fans are ready for the return on Superstar Zion Williamson. He will be joined by a supporting cast including 1st round draft choice Yves Missi.

The 21st pick, Missi is a bouncy center with Belgian-Cameroonian origins who played his high school ball at Prolific Prep in California. Born in Belgium before moving to Cameroon for his childhood, Missi ultimately blossomed into a five-star recruit and graded as ESPN’s 13th-best player in the 2023 class. He earned Big 12 All-Defensive and All-Freshman honors in 2024, finishing his one-and-done campaign with averages of 10.7 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in just 23.0 minutes per game while shooting 61.4% from the field and generating 4.1 free-throw attempts per game.

Brian Johnson, a season ticket holder says, “I am confident the Pels will have a better season this year if Zion stays healthy. Last year early in the season the team showed they could beat elite teams. With the addition of Missi, and we’ll see what the roster looks like, I believe we can be competitive.”

A dangerous rim-runner, Missi ranked eighth in the nation with 76 dunk attempts this season. Deriving 32.2% of his offensive possessions from rolling in pick-and-roll plays marked the 17th-highest frequency in the nation, displaying a clear niche to translate to the pros. Another 34.4% of Missi’s possessions came via offensive rebounding and cuts around the basket, so he profiles strictly as a play-finisher at this time.

Michael Smart, another fan of all sports in New Orleans says, “We have a good team that has young players that can be developed and veterans to provide leadership. I think this year will be a good year for the Pels if they can stay healthy.”

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