March 2012 -
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One advantage of drafting seniors is they bring a more refined game to
the NBA. And while he may lack the upside of some freshmen likely to
enter the draft, Draymond Green excels in numerous areas.
In addition to his scoring and sensational long-range shooting, Green
was averaging over 12 rebounds and 4 assists per 40 minutes through
March 7. No player has done this in their final college season in any of
the past five NBA drafts.
Green, who turned 22 this month, is younger than most seniors in the
draft. He has also improved during the season. The chart
compares his November and December production (1st half) to all games
since (2nd half).
Despite facing tougher competition and defense during the second half
of the season – against exclusively Big Ten opponents – Green
improved his numbers. Other senior small forwards like Kris Joseph
and Jeffery Taylor have seen their production per minute drop in this
timeframe. This is not surprising given the better teams they face in
conference play, but Green has still stepped up.
Green’s long-range shooting has also been sensational. He shot
34.0 percent and made 1.40 three-pointers per 40 minutes in November and
December. Since then, he has knocked down 45.9 percent of his threes and
sank 2.08 per 40 minutes.
Young Seniors and
The 2012 NBA Draft looks like recent years in one way: very few seniors
expect to go early. For this reason, it’s vital to show how four-year
college players are ready to fill roles.
Baylor’s Quincy Acy lacks Draymond Green’s all-around skills, but
stands out in other areas. His athleticism and energy could make him
an ideal small ball power forward for an NBA club’s second unit.
Acy is an even younger senior than Green, which helps his chances
considerably. Among the 37 players taken in the past five drafts who
were approximately the same age as Acy on draft night (21.7 years old),
14 were seniors. That group includes four players – Landry Fields, Roy
Hibbert, Jared Dudley and Darren Collison – who have surpassed
expectations at the next level.
Acy stands out in the free throw attempts per field goal attempt
statistic. His 0.65 free throws for each field goal try (through March
7) easily tops most draft prospects. In the 2011 draft, only
three players topped his ratio. They turned out to be the first three
selections from U.S. colleges: Kyrie Irving, Derrick Williams and
Tristan Thompson. So although he doesn’t shoot much, Acy gets to the
free throw line. And he sinks a solid 76.6 percent of his foul shots as
While some may compare Acy to his former teammate Ekpe Udoh – the sixth
pick in the 2010 draft – his draft night age will be more than one
year and four months younger even though Udoh entered the draft as a
Acy still needs to refine his game, but his college statistics are
better than they appear. Baylor plays at just an average pace,
giving Acy fewer possessions than many other prospects to accumulate
stats. And since he had played just 29.6 minutes per game, his per game
stats won’t jump out at front office personnel either.
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All players used in this newsletter and our sample charts are selected at
random. None of the information comes from actual projects for agents. All projects and conversations