With scouting reports from Tyler Metcalf (@tmetcalf11)

Meet the top 30 prospects of the 2019 NBA Draft.

Zion Williamson

Zion Williamson

6'6 | PF | Duke

Zion Williamson is a generational athlete. Coming into the season I had my concerns that he was just another freak athlete who couldn't actually play; consider those concerns extinguished. Williamson obviously is one of the most explosive athletes we've ever seen. He is able to sky for rebounds, dunk on anyone from anywhere, and be a really good rim protector. On top of this, his footwork and agility are elite. These allow him to drive creatively and keep opponents in front of him defensively. The game just comes naturally to him as he sees the floor well and is rarely out of position.

His ball handling will create a lot of issues for opponents as they will struggle to figure out who should guard him. He is able to create off the dribble which is rare for someone his size. Right now, his outside shooting is a concern. There is a lot of work that needs to be done to make him a good shooter, but it is good enough where opponents will have to contest. I still have some lingering concerns regarding his weight, but those are slowly fading as it doesn't seem to affect him as the season progresses. Williamson is the clear number one pick in this draft. His basketball IQ, athleticism, versatility, and star power make it a no brainer that this guy will be the face of a franchise for years to come.

Williamson is an athletic freak with a basketball mind. If he doesn't go number one, someone made a drastic mistake.

Strengths

Athleticism, Rebounding, Finishing at the rim, Feel for the game

Weaknesses

Shooting, weight, staying in control when driving

Read extended profile of Zion Williamson

Ja Morant

Ja Morant

6'3 | PG | Murray State

Ja Morant's offensive instincts will immediately transfer to the NBA and he is definitely one of the best athletes. He uses this to his advantage on both ends of the floor. He is at his best on offense when he has the ball in his hands and is attacking the rim. With an explosive first step, impeccable footwork, and great body control, Morant rarely has trouble getting to the rim. Once he gets to the rim, he is able to use his soft touch and creativity to either pull up for a floater or spin the ball in off the glass. He also opens up the floor for his teammates when he is in attack mode. His vision when defenses collapse is at a very high level for someone his age. He has no issues dropping it off to a big man for an easy dunk, kicking it out for an open three, or throwing an accurate lob. The only concern with Morant's offensive game is his decision making.

He has a tendency to get out of control and force passes. His impressive passing ability and vision give him immense confidence that leads to unnecessary turnovers where he is trying to make the highlight play instead of the smart play. He is required to carry a lot of responsibility for his team but if he is able to control himself on drives and limit his jump passes, his turnovers will drop. The true issues with Morant's game come on the defensive end. Simply put, Morant is a bad defender. He frequently loses his man off-ball, rarely plays with his hands up, and looks generally disinterested. With that said, he makes up for a lot of his errors with pure athleticism. His leaping ability leads to him being a good shot blocker but if he put the work into being in better position, his game would take a jump to another level.

Strengths

Athleticism, scoring, playmaking

Weaknesses

Defense, decision making

Read extended profile of Ja Morant

RJ Barrett

RJ Barrett

6'7 | SG | Duke

Coming into this season I had RJ Barrett number one but his play has produced more concerns than excitement. He has all the tools to be a team's franchise player but there are still plenty of concerns. Barrett is one of the best scorers in the country. He has an uncanny ability to get to the rim and can either finish through or around contact. He already has an NBA ready body which is ideally paired with his very high basketball IQ. He sees the floor nicely and has no issues taking over a game. Even though he is an elite scorer with his ability to get to the rim or pull up in the mid-range, his outside shooting is inconsistent and ineffective. My biggest concern with Barrett is his shot selection and decision making. Far too often we see him forcing shots.

His high level of confidence results in far too many pull threes that are either heavily contested or take the offense out of its rhythm. His great driving ability also leads him into silly charges or forcing shots because he just tries to power his way through the defense instead of making a smarter, easier play. Right now, despite his impressive scoring numbers, he is a very inefficient player. Barrett's development will be heavily dependent on what franchise he goes to. Things could get ugly if he ends up with a team that lets him do whatever he wants, but if he has structure and a coach that can connect with him, he could develop into a multi-time All-Star.

Strengths

Scoring instincts, Physical tools, IQ

Weaknesses

Shot selection, outside shooting, defensive consistency


De

De'Andre Hunter

6'8 | SF | Virginia

De'Andre Hunter is an elite defender who has massively improved his offensive game. He is one of the best overall defenders in the country and has been able to guard any position on the floor at a high level. His positioning, anticipation, and instincts make it extremely difficult for opponents to score on him. His quick hands force turnovers and his footwork rarely betrays him. He isn't an elite athlete so his defense can be deceiving. Instead of making the flashy, highlight plays, he ensures he doesn't have to through great positioning, keeping his opponent in front of him, and denying passing lanes.

The biggest improvement over the last year has been his jump in offensive production. He is a threat from behind the arc, especially off of catch-and-shoot opportunities. His ability to score off the dribble and off of cuts has been his biggest improvement. He does a great job of utilizing his body and his strength to get to the rim and finish with ease. While Hunter has improved his offensive versatility, he still plays too slow. He is often late at recognizing passes and can be a ball stopper. Getting to the rim or pulling up for a jumper, Hunter has developed into one of the best 3-and-D prospects in the country.

Strengths

Elite defender, two way versatility, Physical tools, ability to score off the dribble

Weaknesses

Creating for teammates, athleticism

Read extended profile of De'Andre Hunter

Darius Garland

Darius Garland

6'3 | PG | Vanderbilt

Darius Garland's offensive game fits perfectly with today's NBA. He is a score-first point guard with surplus confidence. Garland has the ball on a string when he dribbles. His creativity and change of pace confound defenders. This high-level ball handling leads to Garland getting whatever shot he wants. Growing up as a spot up shooter has helped develop his shot to a level that we don't often see in point guards this age. He can spot up off-ball or use hang dribbles and step backs to neutralize defenders. His shot creation ability isn't just for himself either. His ability to carve through defenses opens up numerous opportunities for his teammates. He is more than willing to show off his vision and creativity when passing. While this can lead to stunning highlights, it also leads to too many turnovers.

Garland's decision making will need to improve at the next level as he gets caught up in making the flashy play instead of the smart play. Garland is also limited by his lack of size and athleticism. We've seen plenty of guards succeed in spite of this, but Garland is still too affected by length and physicality to finish at the rim consistently. His lack of size and explosiveness also hurt him on defense. He gets blown by frequently because he gets caught flat-footed and doesn't get down in a defensive stance. In an NBA that commonly switches, Garland will be taken advantage of.

Strengths

Creating his own shot, ball handling, playmaking, shooting

Weaknesses

Decision making, finishing at the rim, defensive potential


Cameron Reddish

Cameron Reddish

6'9 | SF | Duke

Cameron Reddish is one of the least talked about Duke freshmen but could end up having one of the best careers. Reddish has ideal NBA length and one of the prettiest jump shots in the country. He is always a threat from behind the arc and his shooting form is nearly impossible to block. An unheralded part of his offensive game is his driving ability. He uses his shooting to draw defenders into overly aggressive closeouts that he just drives past. His long arms and agility let him avoid contact. While he doesn't typically have an issue getting to the rim, he has struggled with his finishing once he gets there. If he is able to develop a better touch at the rim, his offensive game could take a huge leap.

His length also comes into play on the defensive end by disrupting passing lanes and altering opponent's shots. His off-ball defense can be a liability though as he frequently gets caught ball watching. The reason that he isn't talked about as much as his fellow Duke freshmen is because he will often go through droughts where you forget he's on the floor. He struggles to stay consistently involved. Some of this may be attributed to who his teammates are but it is something he will really need to work on to make a real impact.

Strengths

Shooting, Create off the dribble, Length

Weaknesses

Consistent involvement, Effort wanes, can get caught ball watching on D


Jarrett Culver

Jarrett Culver

6'5 | SG | Texas Tech

Jarrett Culver is an ideal 3-and-D prototype. He is a good athlete that utilizes his length on both ends of the floor. As a defender, Culver is very smart. He disrupts passing lanes, suffocates ball handlers, and has great instincts. The only concern with his defensive ability is how much he tends to overhelp on defense. This often results in his man being left open on the wing but this is a bad habit that should be easily corrected through coaching. Offensively, Culver shows immense potential. He frequently initiates the offense and rarely has any issues getting to the rim. More impressive though is his ability and willingness to pass out of the drive.

He does a great job of dumping it off to a teammate when multiple defenders commit and he has no issues delivering perfect passes to cutters. The biggest concern with Culver is his scoring consistency. He does a great job of getting to the rim but he needs to improve his touch around the rim to be a more effective scorer. Culver has also shown streaks of being a dangerous shooter from outside. He has a solid set shot but in order to truly turn into a consistent offensive weapon, he will need to do a lot of work on his jumper. Currently, he takes far too long to get into his shot and he has a slow release. This is fine on catch-and-shoot opportunities when he is wide open but makes it very difficult for him to shoot off the dribble. If Culver can improve his shooting form, he will greatly increase the potential of player he can turn into.

Strengths

Drive and finish ability, rebounding, on ball defender, primary ball handler potential

Weaknesses

Consistent shooting, can overhelp on defense


Coby White

Coby White

6'5 | PG | UNC

Coby White isn't the most athletic point guard, but that doesn't affect his ability to score and impact the game on both ends of the floor. White's feel for the game reflects that of a much more experienced player. On offense, he can explode for big scoring nights while still actively getting his teammates involved. He is a good passer but if he can improve his vision and creativity, it will take his offensive game to a new level.

Despite his low release point, White is a really good shooter off the dribble where he displays NBA level moves to create space on the perimeter and open lanes to the rim. He has no issue knocking down threes with a hand in his face and he doesn't get intimidated by defenders at the rim. White isn't an explosive athlete but he is very quick and displays great footwork which clearly makes him effective on both ends of the floor. The lack of pure athleticism doesn't affect his game though because his IQ, footwork, and lateral quickness are very high. His on-ball defense frustrates opponents while his off-ball defense limits them from ever getting the ball. White is consistently a pesky defender and if he can improve upon his offensive consistency he will have a long, successful career.

Strengths

Great feel for the game, good shooter, nice touch around the rim, good defender

Weaknesses

low release point on jumper, explosiveness, streaky shooter


Keldon Johnson

Keldon Johnson

6'6 | SF | Kentucky

Keldon Johnson has immense potential to turn into a really good NBA scorer. His physical tools set him apart from a lot of the other prospects in this draft. His size, quickness, and athleticism allow him to guard multiple positions at a high level. He stays engaged when guarding the ball but can fall asleep at times off ball. He will be a competent defender from day one but his scoring versatility is the most exciting part about his game. He creates space for himself when driving and isn't afraid to finish through contact.

He has also shown a solid shooting form that should transition to the NBA nicely. He is most effective on offense when he is operating away from the ball though. He excels when he is spotting up for catch-and-shoot opportunities or running off screens. While his off-ball movement has led to most of his success, he can still become far too passive on offense when he is away from the ball. He needs to work on putting in a consistent effort with his off-ball movement in order to reach his scoring potential. If he can improve his sloppy ball handling and off-ball movement, he could be a dangerous offensive weapon.

Strengths

Physical tools, competitive defender, versatile scorer

Weaknesses

Ball watching, playmaking, staying consistently involved


Brandon Clarke

Brandon Clarke

6'8 | PF | Gonzaga

Brandon Clarke will likely never be a star but he will contribute at a very high level for a long time, starting from day one. Clarke isn't the most skilled player, but his versatility on both ends of the floor is the most intriguing part about his game. He is a very explosive athlete and one of the best rim protectors in the country. Despite not being an exceptionally tall forward, Clarke uses his awareness, timing, and leaping ability to routinely turn away shot attempts at the rim.

His defensive ability expands out to the perimeter as well. His quick feet make it difficult for opponents to get by and he is comfortable switching onto any position. His leaping ability also makes him a good rebounder and rim runner. He is at his best when he is around the rim on offense. His post game is pretty basic but he is able to elevate over defenders or catch lobs to score. On top of this, he has shown the ability to stretch the floor. Clarke has shown flashes of being able to attack off the dribble but when he goes against NBA level defenders, his loose ball handling will give him issues. Clarke's two-way versatility will make a positive impact for any team on day one.

Strengths

Athleticism, offensive versatility, defense, rebounding

Weaknesses

Playmaking, ball security, post game


Rui Hachimura

Rui Hachimura

6'9 | PF | Gonzaga

Rui Hachimura is one of the most versatile big men in this draft. He is a solid athlete who is very fluid with his movement. He has a surprisingly diverse offensive game where he can surgically operate in the post or face up and knock down jumpers. His size and athleticism also make him a dependable rebounder on both ends and a consistent rim protector. Hachimura began playing basketball only a few years ago so he doesn't have a great feel for the game yet. He can struggle to find open teammates and doesn't always recognize the correct rotations on defense. All of the tools are there for him, but he may take some time to consistently contribute to an NBA team.

Strengths

Offensive versatility, rebounding, rim protection

Weaknesses

Creating for teammates, feel for the game


Nassir Little

Nassir Little

6'6 | SF | UNC

Despite coming off the bench for UNC, Nassir Little has all the tools of a lottery pick. He has ideal NBA size and athleticism which makes him a really interesting two-way prospect. His offensive game is frustrating as he struggles to keep a consistent shooting form but as the season has progressed, he has done a great job of showing how he has improved his scoring versatility. He will go through games where he is lights out from three but then will follow it up without making a three for a few games.

His elbow often flares out and he doesn't always have a fluid shooting motion. Despite his shooting struggles, he is a very reliable driver. He uses his body well to create space and is a strong finisher around the rim. He also shows a lot of promise on the defensive end. He stays engaged as an on-ball defender and is a solid rim protector when helping from the weak side. He needs to work on his lateral quickness or else he will get blown by in the NBA. Little has a great foundation for a lottery pick and if the offensive improvement he's shown throughout this season continues, he will have a nice career.

Strengths

Ideal NBA body, versatile defender, rebounding, driving ability

Weaknesses

Shooting consistency, feel for the game, staying involved


Jaxson Hayes

Jaxson Hayes

6'11 | C | Texas

Jaxson Hayes is very raw but very exciting as an ideal rim-running prospect at the center position. His explosiveness makes him an intimidating shot blocker and finisher at the rim which is how he will make his impact from day one. The concern is that he won't develop much past this. His offensive game besides dunking is unrefined. He has a very limited post game but thrives when he is setting screens and rolling for a lob. As the year has progressed his touch on post finishes has improved as has his footwork. This has allowed him to set up lesser defenders on some basic post moves but he will rarely post up in the NBA, at least for a couple of years.

On the defensive end, he is a really good shot blocker who patiently times his block attempts and doesn't fall for pump fakes. When he is dragged out to defend the pick-and-roll, his footwork is good enough that he is able to aggressively hedge and then recover to his own man. Despite the defensive potential, he can miss rotations because of hesitant decision making or is late at recognizing the development of the play.

Strengths

Athleticsim, rim runner, defense (footwork, quick hands, and rim protection), disrupts the pick and roll well

Weaknesses

Offense away from the rim, late reactions on defensive rotations, clumsy with the ball, needs to turn his head quicker when he rolls, strength


Nickeil Alexander-Walker

Nickeil Alexander-Walker

6'6 | SG | Virginia Tech

Nickeil Alexander-Walker is a versatile scoring guard. His smooth shooting form makes him a consistent threat from outside. When teams close out too hard on him, he is able to use his length and creativity to get to - and finish at - the rim. One of the most important facets of his offensive game is his passing ability. He sees the floor really well and is able to deliver accurate passes to cutters. Also, he recognizes when defenses are collapsing on him and is very accurate when passing out of a drive.

NBA teams need multiple players who can initiate the offense and Alexander-Walker will have no issues doing so. Defensively, he can guard positions 1-3 by using his length and footwork to keep opponents in front of him. The real issues come with his off-ball defense. He is frequently over helping, sagging too far off his guy, or making poorly timed switches. Good shooters and cutters will take full advantage of this at the next level. His lack of explosiveness will also hinder his rebounding and ability to finish at the rim against NBA shot blockers.

Strengths

Good on-ball defender, good passer, finishing at the rim, smooth shooting form

Weaknesses

Shooting off the dribble, Bad off-ball defender, explosiveness



15. PJ Washington

6'8 | PF | Kentucky

Strength and versatility are the first two words that come to mind for PJ Washington. He has improved tremendously over the past year and became a vital piece for Kentucky. His versatility on both ends of the floor is the most exciting part of his game. Offensively, he can abuse smaller defenders in the post with physical post moves. If he is matched up on a less athletic opponent he is able to stretch the floor and take bigger defenders off the dribble. His strong frame, consistent footwork, and scoring versatility also make him a really good screener. The concerns come with his overall ball security. He is a clumsy dribbler and has the ball stripped too often.

If Washington is relied upon to create his own shot, the results won't be outstanding. Defensively, he is strong enough to guard in the post and quick enough to switch on the perimeter. His aggressiveness leads to him committing unnecessary fouls but it also forces opponents into committing turnovers and forcing bad shots. He hasn't shown consistent rim protection capabilities but has been able to help from the weak side. With Washington's overall versatility and tenacity, he will fit in great with an NBA locker room.

Strengths

Offensive versatility, Rebounding, defensive versatility

Weaknesses

Ball handling, ability to create his own shot, shot selection


16. Bol Bol

7'2 | C | Oregon

Bol Bol is an attractive prospect based on his potential versatility, but he has a lot of red flags. Bol's extraordinary reach makes him a really good rim protector. When he uses his mobility as well, he can really deter opponents from going anywhere even close to the paint. His length also gives him one of the biggest rebounding windows in the country. While he projects currently as a shot blocker, his offensive game shows a lot of promise as well.

His long arms and soft hands make him an ideal lob target with a huge catch radius. Despite his unorthodox push shot, he still has a soft touch and good arc on his outside shooting which could add a nice floor spacing option to his game. The biggest concern with Bol is his inconsistent motor and unease for physicality. He struggles to show up for every game (quite literally in some cases in high school) and compete at a high level. He doesn't fight for rebounds unless they come to him and opponents can easily establish position in the post. His lackluster screening ability will drive coaches crazy along with his questionable decision making. His passing ability and shot selection are myopic and routinely end up in lost possessions. Bol has the tools to be an NBA rim protector but if he can't improve his mindset, he could flame out quickly.

Strengths

Shot blocking, rebounding, fluidity, offensive potential

Weaknesses

Decision making, consistent motor, ability to handle physical play


17. Jontay Porter

6'11 | C | Missouri

Jontay Porter isn't a great athlete but he makes up for it with a very high basketball IQ. His awareness on both ends of the floor is very high and puts him in the right spot. His defensive upside will be limited in the NBA because of his lack of athleticism. He will likely struggle to guard in space and will struggle as a rim protector due to his lack of explosiveness. Despite this, he can still make a positive impact on defense. His recognition and awareness put him a step ahead of opponents. He does a great job of rotating and disrupts shots with his disciplined use of verticality. His high IQ is evident on the offensive end as well. His floor vision is impressive, especially for a college center. On top of this, his passes make it easy for teammates to immediately get into their shot. Along with his high-level passing, Porter has shown the ability to consistently stretch the floor. His catch-and-shoot ability projects perfectly for a pick-and-pop center.

Strengths

Basketball IQ, shooting, playmaking

Weaknesses

Athleticism, defensive versatility, conditioning


18. Romeo Langford

6'6 | SF | Indiana

Romeo Langford has all the tools to be a top-three player on a contender if he can change his mindset. The combination of his size, ball handling, and scoring instincts lead to consistent opportunities. Whether it is at the rim or shooting off the dribble, Langford excels when he has the ball. When he attacks the rim, his athleticism and size make it easy for him to finish through contact while his soft touch and high IQ allow for creative finishes. His shooting form suggests that he will develop into a good shooter and has improved on catch-and-shoot opportunities, but right now he is still too inconsistent to rely on it.

His biggest offensive downfall is his inability to stay involved on offense. There are stretches he goes through where you forget that he's on the floor because he just stands in the corner. To be an offensive threat in the NBA, Langford will need to work on being consistently involved and creating opportunities for his teammates. The advantages that Langford's physical tools provide on offense are also relevant on the defensive end. When he is guarding the ball he locks in and opponents struggle to beat him off the dribble. Similar to the offensive end, his struggles come with his intensity. Langford often looks disinterested when he is on the floor. When he is away from the ball - on either end - he is often flat footed and ball watching. He needs to increase his effort and awareness on both ends if he wants to develop into anything more than a rotation player.

Strengths

Scoring instincts, defensive potential, physical build

Weaknesses

Mindset, off ball defense, consistent involvement


19. Cameron Johnson

6'9 | PF | UNC

Cameron Johnson has one of the prettiest shots in the country. He is often classified as just a shooter but he has shown that he is capable of doing much more. Johnson's reputation as a shooter is well earned. His ability to run off screens and relocate on the perimeter gives him enough space to use his high, quick release to continuously knock down threes. While he finds most of his points from beyond the arc, he has also displayed the ability to score off the drive. He patiently picks his way to the rim and uses his long arms to finish around traffic.

Going forward, it would be encouraging to see him improve his ability to pull up off the dribble for jumpers and improve his passing ability. Johnson also isn't a great athlete but that doesn't stop him from being a solid defender. He uses his length to cut passing lanes and deny his opponent from ever getting the ball. His lateral quickness and post defense aren't great so switching onto multiple opponents won't be ideal. Johnson will be able to help a team off the bench from day one with his great shooting ability and intelligent defense.

Strengths

Great shooter, off ball movement, length

Weaknesses

not a great athlete, average defender, playmaking


20. Tyler Herro

| SG | Kentucky

Tyler Herro is one of the most confident players in this class. He believes that every shot is going in and he isn't far off. He has a consistent form with a quick release that makes him a deadly shooter from outside. He also does a great job of running off screens the entire game which creates shooting space and exhausts his defender. Herro isn't just an outside shooter though. He utilizes change-of-pace dribbling to create lanes to the rim on a consistent basis. He also does a great job of leveraging the threat of his outside shot to create better opportunities. His ability to be a primary ball handler is limited. His ball handling and passing ability is adequate but isn't at the level that can create opportunities for teammates regularly.

His high level of confidence carries over to the defensive end as well. He isn't a great defender, mostly due to limited athleticism, but he works really hard on that end. He doesn't get intimidated and has improved his positioning as the year has gone on. Herro will likely be viewed as just a shooter in the NBA, but he will bring a lot more to the table once the games start.

Strengths

Shooting, off ball movement, confidence, effort

Weaknesses

Primary ball handler, athleticism, playmaking


21. Talen Horton-Tucker

6'4 | SF | Iowa State

Talen Horton-Tucker is an offensive minded wing who is at his best with the ball in his hands. His high-level ball-handling allows him to initiate the offense. He has an uncanny knack for getting to the rim where he uses his body to create space. His high, quick release lets him shoot off the dribble and he is always a threat from behind the arc. Even though he can run the offense, he is a below average passer. If he is able to improve on passing out of his drives, his offensive game could take a jump.

We are seeing more NBA offenses run by wings so if Horton-Tucker can improve his vision he could be a secondary playmaker on a team's second line. His lack of athleticism limits his potential for growth. He is a below average defender who gets taken advantage of by quicker opponents. Even though he struggles to switch onto guards, his bigger body allows him to effectively guard power forwards and at least be a nuisance for some centers. He struggles on both ends of the floor when he is away from the ball as his off-ball movement is nonexistent on offense. He is used to having the ball in his hands so he frequently reverts to just standing on the wing. He is an effective finisher around the rim so if he can improve his cutting ability, it would add a nice dynamic to his offensive game. Defensively, he gets caught ball watching. Getting beat on back door cuts is a common occurrence and his lack of athleticism doesn't allow him to recover. Even though he isn't a great defender, he will need to tighten up his off-ball defense in order to not be a complete liability.

Strengths

Shooting off the dribble, driving ability, outside shooting

Weaknesses

Below average defender, athleticism, off ball movement


22. Grant Williams

6'7 | PF | Tennessee

Grant Williams is built like a bull, and he plays like one too. As the likely back-to-back SEC player of the year, Williams has proven that he is a first-round talent. His strength is his biggest asset and he takes full advantage of it on both ends. On offense, he has no issue establishing position in the post. He is able to seal off opponents and then utilize his soft touch, agile feet, and creativity to score. He also has the ability to knock down jumpers. He doesn't venture to the perimeter often, but when he does, he is an accurate shooter.

The downfalls come when he is forced to set up his teammates. He doesn't see the floor well and lacks the creativity that accompanies the great passing big men. On defense, Williams uses his strength and IQ to his full advantage. He is one of the best rebounders in the country and a really good team defender. His impressive footwork allows him to switch when needed and his strength makes him a wall in the post. His lack of size and athleticism put a pretty clear ceiling on his rim protection ability, but he makes up for it with a high IQ.

Strengths

Rebounding, IQ, scoring ability, physical tools

Weaknesses

Rim protection, explosiveness, playmaking


23. Tre Jones

6'2 | PG | Duke

Tre Jones won't fill up the stat sheet, but he is one of the best all-around players in this draft. He embodies the ideology of the point guard position. He is an incredibly intelligent player with great instincts and anticipation for what the opponents are going to do. Offensively, he rarely forces the issue. He is a calming presence who can create for his teammates and slither his way to the rim. His consistent form makes him a solid pull up shooter and his creativity leads to acrobatic finishes at the rim. The most impressive part of his game is his defensive ability as he is the best defensive point guard in the country.

He is a suffocating defender who shuts down his opponent. His instincts and footwork rarely betray him so even though he isn't the fastest player, he has no issue keeping opponents in front of him. Jones's major limitation will be his size and lack of explosiveness. He isn't a great athlete which will limit his ability to create his own shot and create some issues on the defensive end when he gets switched on in the post. Overall, Jones is one of the best point guards in this draft and will consistently produce in the NBA for a long time.

Strengths

Decision making, defense, IQ, shot selection

Weaknesses

Athleticism, shooting proficiency


24. Kevin Porter

6'6 | SG | USC

Kevin Porter is a great athlete who is a lot for opponents to handle. When he is able to run the floor and attack the hoop he can really take over a game. He uses his size and athleticism to create driving lanes and loves taking guys one on one. He has shown flashes of being able to create for teammates off the dribble but usually gets sucked into creating for himself. On the defensive end, Porter is a liability. All of his physical tools suggest that he could be a good defender eventually but right now he is just bad. He gets caught ball watching, doesn't get in a defensive stance, and shows no interest in working hard at that end of the floor. Porter is full of potential at both ends, but he will need some serious coaching to work out the numerous bad habits he's developed.

Strengths

Ball handling, creating off the dribble, size, athleticism

Weaknesses

Shooting, defensive positioning and discipline, attitude


25. Ty Jerome

6'5 | PG | Virginia

Ty Jerome is a mature, fundamentally sound point guard. Like most Virginia players in recent years, he won't blow you away with his box score but he will make winning plays the entire game. Jerome is a big point guard and even though he isn't a great athlete, he doesn't struggle to score or get to the rim. While a lot of players rely on their athleticism to score, Jerome focuses on deceptively changing pace to create space. His soft touch makes him effective at the rim, on floaters, or pulling up. He also has no issues setting up his teammates whether it is off of drive-and-kick opportunities or finding them on a well-timed cut. In order to play at Virginia, you have to be a strong defender.

Jerome's consistent footwork makes him a persistent defender. He does a great job of not crossing his feet when his opponent is on the move and clearly communicates and identifies switches and rotations. Jerome's lack of athleticism does rear its ugly head though on the defensive end. He may struggle to stay with NBA athletes but could make up for this with his high basketball IQ. Jerome isn't going to force you into a state of awe, but he will make positive contributions the entire time he is on the floor.

Strengths

Playmaking, IQ, on ball defender

Weaknesses

Athleticism, shooting consistency


26. Bruno Fernando

6'10 | C | Maryland

Bruno Fernando is an old school center and is an incredibly strong rebounder at both ends of the floor. Most of Fernando's scoring opportunities come off of offensive rebounds that he puts back with authority. His post game has improved throughout the season, but it is still limited in its ability to create quality looks. He telegraphs his moves and is able to power his way through instead of using high-level footwork and post moves to create an open look. Shooting away from the rim has shown flashes of success but is something he will need to work on to be an effective modern-day center.

The biggest improvement in Fernando's game compared to last year has been his defensive ability. He is able to disrupt pick-and-rolls and is a strong on-ball defender in the post. He has also emerged as one of the best shot blockers in the country this year. His weak side awareness and timing leads to him routinely sending layups the other way. If Fernando continues to work hard and develop his game, he could turn into a well-rounded center that can make a consistent impact at the NBA level.

Strengths

Strength, rebounding, roll man, defensive potential

Weaknesses

Inconsistent effort, offensive consistency, ball security


27. Dedric Lawson

6;8 | PF | Kansas

Dedric Lawson is one of the most versatile offensive big men in the country. He uses his great footwork to confuse defenders in the post and can stretch the floor with his fluid jump shot. This offensive versatility makes him a matchup nightmare for opponents. He has no issues dragging slower opponents out to the arc and he will abuse smaller opponents if they switch on to him. He is very active on both ends of the floor rebounding the ball, often leading to easy put backs. Lawson's defensive ability is where his impact starts to take a downturn. He lacks the strength required to hold his own against NBA bigs and lacks the lateral quickness and instincts to keep up with faster opponents. He isn't a very good rim protector and even though he is an active rebounder, he needs to be a much stronger rebounder as he often gives up rebounds he should be getting. Lawson could be very effective in the pick-and-roll but will likely be exposed on defense.

Strengths

Creative post game, versatile when setting the pick, good shooter, active rebounder

Weaknesses

Defense, rim protection, needs to be stronger when rebounding


28. KZ Okpala

6'9 | SF | Stanford

KZ Okpala projects as a solid 3-and-D wing but is far from it in practice. His best attribute right now is his size and length. Offensively, he is able to finish around the rim using his long arms to either score over smaller defenders or around bigger ones. He isn't flashy with the ball in his hands, but he is comfortable with it. Despite a level of comfort with the ball, he struggles to create his own shot. His lack of speed and dribbling creativity limit his ability to create driving lanes or space to pull up.

The biggest red flag with Okpala though is his passivity on both ends of the floor. He is willing to drive once he gets the ball on offense but spends most of his time standing in the corner not looking for cuts or space to relocate to on the perimeter. His opponents often beat him on cuts because they catch him ball watching on defense. He is able to use his length to affect shots but his slow lateral speed and late rotations tend to make him an ineffective defender. Okpala has had moments of being a consistent scorer but he has a lot of work to do on both ends to be a consistent contributor.

Strengths

3-and-D potential, finishing around the rim, rebounding

Weaknesses

Consistent shooting, defensive awareness, offensive involvement


29. Lugentz Dort

6'5 | SG | Arizona State

Lugentz Dort is a defensive minded wing with an NBA body. His combination of strength and quickness allow him to guard multiple positions at a high level. He is able to hold his own in the post against bigger opponents while keeping up with guards on the perimeter. These physical tools also make him effective around the rim. Rebounding won't be an issue for him and his driving ability is easily his best offensive attribute.

He uses his strength to finish through contact and his floor awareness to pass out of drives. The issue with Dort is that he becomes ineffective once he gets away from the ball. His outside shooting leaves a lot to be desired as his form needs a lot of work. He will frequently have inconsistent release points with far too much arc under his shot. The likelihood of Dort's shot greatly improving is unlikely but if he can improve the consistency of his off-ball movement, he will be able to make a bigger offensive impact. Opponents will likely sag way off of Dort, so if he is unable to figure out how to exploit that, he will be confined as a defensive specialist.

Strengths

Good on ball defender, physical build, playmaking, guard multiple positions

Weaknesses

Shooting, consistent offensive involvement, consistent offball defense


30. Daniel Gafford

6'10 | C | Arkansas

Daniel Gafford is a mobile center that is still just mostly potential. Gafford does a really good job of running the floor. His mobility and jumping ability are great tools for a young center. This combined with his length, project him to be a good rim protector and finisher around the rim. The problem though, his motor constantly varies and he struggles to stay engaged. He has all of the tools to be a versatile defender and scorer but the reality is that he struggles away from the rim on either end. The potential that Gafford has shown is exciting but if he is unable to put it into practice his NBA career could be short-lived.

Strengths

Runs the floor well, strong finisher around the rim, rim protector potential

Weaknesses

Struggles to make a consistent impact, aggressiveness, ball security, scoring other than at the rim