In the coming years, the men’s national basketball team of the Bahamas will catch up with its dominant American neighbor’s thanks to its unique talent, DeAndre Ayton. Ever since he set foot in the United States as a high school student, the 7-foot 1-inch player, who can be either a center or power forward and is known to be physically demanding, is a force to be reckoned with. After almost conquering NCAA basketball as a rookie, the 2018 Karl Malone Award winner was selected with the first overall selection from the Phoenix Suns, where he appears to be the missing piece to revive the franchise in the NBA.
DeAndre Ayton’s Biography (Age)
Born on July 23, 1998, in Nassau, Bahamas, DeAndre Ayton was welcomed into the world by his parents Alvin, who is from Nigeria, and his mother Andrea, who is Bahamian but of Jamaican descent.
Ayton attended the Bahamas Academy High School, where he attracted the attention of the Bahamian Basketball Year magazine, which tracked him down at the young age of 12. After attending a training camp in his home country, Ayton moved to San Diego, California to attend high school at Balboa City School.
As a high school student, DeAndre Ayton averaged 21 points and 16 rebounds per game for Balboa. The following summer, he played on the Supreme Court AAU Circuit where he averaged 16.5 points and 13.5 rebounds. His achievements earned him a scholarship to attend Hillcrest Prep Academy in Phoenix, Arizona, to which he immediately transferred. In his junior year with his new school, he achieved an average of 29.2 points, 16.7 rebounds, and 3.8 blocks per game. In his senior year, Ayton proved that he was unplayable against his peers with an average of 26 points, 15 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks per game when he led his school to a 33-6 record.
By the time the star player graduated high school, he was considered the most promising player in his class. He attracted the interest of leading college basketball programs in Kansas and Kentucky but decided to stay in Arizona by accepting the offer to play for the Wildcats.
After he joined the Wildcats, an FBI wiretap revealed that the school’s head coach was considering paying Ayton and his family $100,000 to lure him to Arizona. Despite the coach’s confidence, Ayton was allowed to continue playing for Arizona. On his debut, he scored 19 points (the 7th most from an Arizona rookie), 12 rebounds, and 3 blocks. A few months later, he managed 6 blocks in a game against Stanford, the most ever done by a newcomer from the school in a single game. Ayton averaged 20.1 points and 11.6 rebounds per game in 35 games, including doubles in 23 games. He was subsequently named Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year at Pac-12, receiving the All Pac-12 First team, Freshman team, and Defensive team awards, as well as a unanimous All-American First team mention.
In the 2018 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament for Men, the Arizona Wildcats were considered a big favorite, but the team was displeased by New York State University at Buffalo. After this defeat, DeAndre Ayton announced that he would participate in the 2018 NBA Draft.
NBA Playing Career
Ayton had allegedly been claiming for months that he knew he would be the first to be selected. The player, who was compared to the future Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon because of his massive frame but decent footwork, and to the future Hall of Famer Kevin Garnett because of his competitive mentality, was eventually drafted by the Phoenix Suns with the first overall pick, making him the franchise’s first-ever number 1 pick.
In July 2018, DeAndre Ayton signed a contract on the rookie scale before joining the team for the 2018 NBA Summer League. In the four games he played, he averaged a double-double of 14.5 points and 10.5 rebounds per game to reach second place in the All-Summer League, which the second team mentioned when he entered his rookie year.
Height and Weight
During his time at the University of Arizona, DeAndre Ayton is said to have weighed 260 pounds (117 kg), but since then he has been cut down to 250 pounds (113 kg). The Bahamian basketball player’s height is said to be 2.16 m (7 feet 1 inch), while his wingspan is said to be 2.27 m (7 feet 5 inches).