With the 14th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, the Phoenix Suns selected the 20-year-old T.J. Warren out of North Carolina State. One of the most prolific scorers in the NCAA last season, Warren averaged 24.9 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game while shooting 52.6 percent from the field. As a bit of a tweener, Warren’s deadly midrange game will need to expand in his rookie season to prove to coach Jeff Hornacek that he was worth the lottery section.
But what areas of his game does he need to work on most as a rookie? We already know Warren has a knack for getting more buckets than an ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and we’ve seen how smooth he is attacking the basket, knocking down step-back jumpers and grabbing boards. The potential is definitely there, since Warren put up 25.3 points and six rebounds per game and shot 59 percent in the three NBA Summer League games where he actually got decent minutes.
But what will this 2013-14 Consensus Second Team All-American need to do to earn his minutes off the bench with the Suns next season? Here’s a look ahead to this promising rookie’s first season with in Phoenix and the five key areas he needs to work on to become a productive NBA player.