Former Florida State basketball player Jonathan Isaac opened a new book in program history on Thursday when he was drafted sixth overall by the Orlando Magic in the 2017 NBA Draft, making him the Seminoles’ first lottery pick in ten years.
Isaac’s selection at No. 6 overall makes him the highest selected FSU player since Seminole legend Dave Cowens was selected fourth overall by the Boston Celtics in 1970. His selection also cements Isaac as the second highest drafted ’Nole of all time behind only Cowens.
Rated as the No. 8 overall player and No. 2 small forward in the 2016 recruiting class coming into FSU, Isaac averaged 12 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.5 blocks and 1.2 steals while shooting 50.8% from the field in his single year in Tallahassee. Isaac was also crucial in leading FSU to its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2012.
Measuring in at 6’10, 210 pounds, Isaac fits best at one of the two forward positions at the next level, but has proven capable of defending any position, even limiting fellow 2017 lottery pick Dennis Smith Jr., a point guard, in their one matchup.
Isaac joins the Magic in the middle of a major rebuild, where he will be a centerpiece alongside Aaron Gordon. His defense, blocking ability, versatility, shooting ability, and intensity will be key to a resurgence on an Orlando team looking to make a return to the postseason after a current five-year playoff drought.