Once the Utah Jazz were on the clock for the No. 16 overall pick on Thursday night, they knew exactly what they were going to do.

Baylor’s Keyonte George was someone the Jazz had ranked in their top 10, so the fact that he was still available at 16 made the Jazz front office feel very lucky. Even better, when George found out he was headed to Utah, he felt just as lucky.

“It was a dream come true,” George said. “You see the tears of joy coming from my eyes just because going through this process this was one of the spots that I really liked. So when I heard my name called by Utah … There’s just so many emotions going through my head right now, all positive. I’m just excited.”

What the Jazz like the most about George is that he has all the tools that could allow him to become a complete NBA guard who can do a little bit of everything. He’s crafty with the ball in his hands and doesn’t seem to get nervous no matter how much defensive pressure he’s under. Instead, George creates a ton of pressure for defenses with how well he can handle and create space for himself.

He really works to create the best shots for himself or others and that means that he’s either taking smart outside shots or he’s getting to the rim where he easily finishes with both hands and isn’t scared of contact because he cleans up at the free throw line.

While the 6-foot-4 guard is more known for his offensive game, where he really seems to be a threat from every spot on the court, especially with the ball in his hands, George takes a lot of pride in his defensive game.

“Getting that dog mentality, knowing the rotations, staying in front of all, making the person I’m guarding take tough shots,” he said when asked to describe his defensive game. “Just being that complete player, wanting to learn each and every day. So, you’re gonna get a student in a game and somebody that’s not gonna take this game for granted.”

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Continuing to build on the philosophy that pushed the Jazz toward picking Taylor Hendricks with the 9th pick, the Jazz wanted positional size, defensive versatility and to increase the shot profile of the roster, and they feel that they accomplished all of those things by picking George.

“Keyonte I think has probably the most diversified offensive-developed skill set, maybe in the draft,” Jazz general manager Justin Zanik said. “He’s smart, he’s a good passer. I can see him playing on the ball and off the ball. But just a really talented guard.”

While George shot just 33.8% from deep in his singular season at Baylor, he’s been a great shooter for years and was a high-volume shooter at Baylor. More importantly, his shot is mechanically sound and he’s an 80% free throw shooter which usually indicates success as he moves to the NBA.

George, like Hendricks, needs to get stronger to be able to deal with the size and strength of NBA players, but the Jazz aren’t looking to rush any of their new prospects.

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