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St. John’s Justin Simon declares for NBA Draft

Simon, the Big East Defensive Player of the Year, will look to go pro

NCAA Basketball: St. John at Duke Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Reigning Big East Defensive Player of the Year G Justin Simon has declared for the NBA Draft.

Simon averaged 10.2 points, 3.2 assists, 5.1 rebounds, .6 blocks, and 1.5 steals in 32.9 minutes per game last season, his second with St. John’s. Simon has signed with RZA Sports Agency and plans to stay in the draft as of this time.

From California, Simon played a prep year in the Northeast before going to Arizona, and finding playing time hard to come by. His transfer to St. John’s was a boost in the team’s talent level.

Once on the court, Simon was a defensive menace and increased the pace of the transition attack.

Simon comes off of a decent junior year, playing a key part in the Red Storm’s NCAA tournament appearance. Simon’s most memorable moments this year (other than his Big East honor) came at Madison Square Garden as he hit a ¾ court shot to end the 1st half and begin a comeback, with St. John’s down 19, to beat Villanova.

Simon has a year left to play, and could come back; but after a transfer from Arizona, Simon may wish to continue his development on the professional level.

A guard, Simon’s shooting could hold him back on the professional level, but his athleticism and ability to finish over players will get him a look. A faster, more wide-open style of play may highlight his skills, once he finds a position.

Though Simon may not be drafted into the NBA, there’s reasonable certainty he will be able to get a spot on a team should he choose to play abroad, or domestically in the G-League.