New favorite for top pick of 2024 NBA Draft, and it’s likely someone you’ve never heard of

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If you’re not a die-hard NBA Draft enthusiast or a dedicated follower of JL Bourg-en-Bresse (who? Exactly…), chances are you’re unfamiliar with the player projected to be the top pick in two days.

The upcoming 2024 NBA Draft has been widely criticized as one of the weakest in recent memory, and this lack of excitement becomes apparent when examining the prospects at the top of the draft board. For weeks, Alexandre Sarr was considered the frontrunner for the first overall selection. Until about a month ago, most basketball fans had never even heard of Sarr, a talented big man hailing from France.

However, late last week, Sarr’s status as the betting favorite to go first overall in the NBA Draft was usurped by another French player, Zaccharie Risacher, whom you probably weren’t familiar with either. Risacher currently holds a significant -225 edge as the favorite to be the top pick, according to BetMGM, and this sentiment is shared by Yahoo Sports NBA draft expert Krysten Peek in her latest mock draft.

While we’ve witnessed underwhelming NBA Drafts in the past, it’s a rarity for the first overall selection to be a complete unknown to all but the most dedicated basketball enthusiasts.
Could Zaccharie Risacher be the first pick in the upcoming NBA draft? Despite being relatively unknown, there is a possibility that the Atlanta Hawks, who hold the coveted first pick, might select Risacher.

Risacher is somewhat of a mystery, similar to Sarr and other international players who have gone first overall in the past. Usually, there is a lot of buzz surrounding these players, like Victor Wembanyama last year. However, Risacher could be a refreshing change, as many NBA fans will be tuning in to the draft and getting their first glimpse of the top overall pick.

Standing at 6-foot-9, Risacher is a forward with a strong shooting ability from beyond the arc. He averaged 11.1 points per game for his French team, JL Bourg-en-Bresse, which plays in a relatively small arena with a capacity of 3,548 people. One of Risacher’s standout qualities is his potential for growth and improvement if he adds more muscle to his frame. These factors have led to recent reports suggesting that he could be the number one pick, causing a shift in the BetMGM odds.
In a few days, Risacher could potentially join the prestigious group of athletes who were selected first overall in the NBA Draft, even though many fans may not be familiar with him yet.

This isn’t the first time the betting market has experienced a significant shift in draft odds shortly before the first pick is announced.

Recently, the betting market’s ability to predict the top pick in the NBA or NFL drafts has slightly diminished, mainly because players like Caleb Williams and Wembanyama were clear favorites. However, this year’s NBA Draft lacks a consensus top player, resulting in fluctuating draft odds leading up to the selection.

There is still a chance for further changes. Rumors have circulated that UConn’s talented big man, Donovan Clingan, could potentially be chosen first. Even casual basketball fans may have heard of his name if they follow March Madness.
However, at the moment, it appears that Risacher is the frontrunner according to market speculation. Once confirmed, we can delve into his background and familiarize ourselves with his story.