Indiana Men's Basketball: Trayce Jackson-Davis Making a Name for Himself in the NBA

Trayce Jackson-Davis, Golden State Warriors
Trayce Jackson-Davis, Golden State Warriors / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages

As the picks continued to be announced devoid of his name, Trayce Jackson-Davis surely pondered the possibility of going undrafted in the 2023 NBA draft. Finally, the execs in the Golden State Warriors war room decided to give one of the all-time greatest Indiana Hoosiers a shot to show what he could do at the professional level. While TJD was undoubtedly happy to have simply been selected with the 57th pick, he obviously took his draft night slip personally:

Jackson-Davis clearly made it his mission to prove his doubters wrong, but he had his work cut out for him heading into his rookie season on a Warriors team that is looking to compete for a championship on an annual basis. As an NBA rookie on a contender, it is never an easy feat to garner the respect of your head coach and usurp your veteran teammates in a pro rotation. And in spite of an eye-opening performance in just his second NBA regular season game, Trayce's role in the Bay consisted mostly of garbage minutes.

His role remained minuscule up until mid-December when Draymond Green was suspended indefinitely following his latest maniacal episodes on the NBA hardwood. When Green was sent away from the team, Dubs head coach Steve Kerr had little choice but to let his rookie big man off the leash. Flash forward roughly a month into the future, and Kerr may now have little choice but to keep Jackson-Davis in the rotation moving forward. He has genuinely been THAT good for Golden State.

Following his 4th double-double of the season (all coming in the team's last 11 games) in Sunday night's loss to the Toronto Raptors, TJD has strung together a spectacular stretch of play. In those same 11 games, he has posted nightly averages of 11.2 points, 7.9 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.2 blocks. He has been incredibly efficient with his shot selection as well, connecting on a whopping 72.4% (55-76) of his looks from the field. During this time frame, the first year pro has resembled a guy that has been in the association for years.

Things have been a bit chaotic for the Warriors throughout the 2023-2024 season, and it is beginning to look a lot like the end of the former dynasty's reign of dominance. Thankfully, they have a clear silver lining in the form of their rookie big man who is looking more and more like one of the (if not THE) biggest steals of the 2023 NBA draft. Hopefully Golden State sent out holiday cards to the other 29 NBA teams who passed on this hidden treasure, and hopefully Steve Kerr has contacted Mike Woodson to thank him for developing such a talented basketball player back in B-Town.