Monday, December 31, 2007

Brook Lopez - NBA Draft Prospects

Numbers: 19.3 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 2.1 bpg, 47% FG, 79% FT

About Him: Lopez probably could have been a lottery pick if he came out after his freshman year, and managed to increase his stock this year despite missing the first semester because of academic ineligibility. In the offseason he added about 25 pounds of muscle, which he really needed to fill out his 7 foot frame. He still gets pushed around some on the block, but that will improve as his strength and assertiveness does. He is very good at getting position down low and is a great finisher with either hand around the rim. He has a nice array of post moves (spins, jump hooks, drop-steps either way) and can really seal off his man when he wants to. The problem is he has a tendency to post up about 7-10 feet from the basket, where he isn't as effective. He does have a little turn-around from that range, but he needs to develop the ability to back defenders down. He is pretty effective facing his man up as well. His long arms allow him to use the soft touch he has on his jumper, but when he puts the ball on the floor he doesn't get by people and can't his shots on the move. He is very effective in the pick-and-roll because he is mobile, has greats hands, and as I said is a good finisher around the rim. He is also very good defensively. He uses his length well, to the tune of more than two blocks per game, and also does a good job defending the pick-and-roll because he is quick laterally for his size and is a good positional defender. Despite the academic problems, he has a good work ethic, plays with intensity, and has a bit of a mean streak.

Comparisons: Brendan Haywood, poor man's Tim Duncan

Bottom Line: He is probably the best center in the draft right now, and will be a quality center in the league. He doesn't have the upside of a lot of the other big guys in the draft and will most likely never be a star, but will be able to contribute with quality minutes immediately. He probably will get picked in the top of the lottery, most likely in the 3-7 range.

No comments: