Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
In the spring of 2017, when he was home in Nassau, Bahamas, Kai Jones worked out with Deandre Ayton.
“That was right before he was headed to Arizona,” Jones said Monday night of the No. 1 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. “He had came home for a couple weeks and we got in the gym a couple times and played pickup together. He just shared with me how tough the competition was in the United States, and he was telling me the things to watch out for, look out for. How hard that I would have to work and I got to play one-on-one with him a little bit.”
For the record, Ayton beat Jones 7-3 in a game of “King of the Court.”
“It gave me an idea how much better I have to get,” Jones said, “and that was really the driving factor for me.”