The last time Sheldon Sharp played competitive basketball was his final year in high school with Dream City Christian in Glendale, Arizona in 2021.
Sharpe snapped to the brim, while showing his scope from behind the bow with several deep, triple pointers. It was a preview of his limitless potential. The 6-foot-6-meter explosive ranger was a highly-tolerated prospect who eventually decided to enroll in the University of Kentucky.
The potential #1 ranked team for the 2022 class graduated a semester early and joined Kentucky in January to prepare for the 2022-23 college season. Kentucky coach John Calipari reportedly toyed with the idea of playing Sharp last season after finding out he was eligible to enlist in the NBA.
But Sharpe never played in any game, and instead was involved with the team only as a coaching player. Calipari had said he expected Sharp to return to Kentucky for next season, when he was supposed to lead a roster with national title aspirations.
Instead, Sharp announced in April the NBA draft. And while he didn’t play a minute with the Wildcats, it’s expected to be a lottery pick.
USA TODAY Sports Project, ESPN and The Athletic rank seventh consecutively in their most recent dummy draft. The Sports Illustrated website makes it go to the ninth place. Sports News put Sharp in fifth place.
Sharp’s talent is undeniable, but his recent inactivity causes “mystery”, with many curious if his game can be translated to the next level.
“In my opinion, it’s the first pick,” Calipari said in an interview with Radio Kentucky Sports in February. “How can I say I know what the first draft looks like? Because I have four [of them]. “
Before arriving in Kentucky, he was the best in the 2022 class, according to the 247 Sports Composite Rating.
Sharp moved to Dream City Christian after an impressive career at Sunrise Christian Academy in Bel Air, Kansas. In his freshman year at Sunrise Christian, he led them to a record 22-3 and several national television appearances.
Choose Kentucky instead of Kansas, Alabama, Arizona, Oregon, Crichton, and more.
When Sharp joined the show in January, he could have made his way into the lineup. He said he would only play if needed.
But although he’s never played alongside other Kentucky Draft hopefuls like TyTy Washington, he’s satisfied with how everything turned out in his one season at Lexington.
“Everything happens for a reason, so I don’t regret not playing,” Sharpe said.
Sharp is an explosive athlete, who has the ability to score at all three levels of the court. The Canadian national has a very quick first step and a killer crosshair that allows him to get into the positions with ease.
He also has the ability to defend at a high level and wreak havoc in the passing lane with his 6 foot 11 1/2 wingspan.
While his game depends on his ability to score in short bursts, Sharp is confident in his ability to launch an attack and find teammates open to scoring opportunities.
“I think I’m a top-level scorer, plus I can get my teammates on and find them when they’re open as well and on the defensive side I lock and play from one to five,” Sharpe said.
Sharp is modeling his playing style after some of today’s NBA stars and hopes to emulate the success they’ve enjoyed.
“Right now, I’m watching Bradley Beal, Jason Tatum, and Zach Lavigne.” Sharp told NBC Sports Washington.