Thursday, May 28, 2009

NBA Draft Prospects: Sam Young, Pitt

Stats: 19.2 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 2.4 t/o's, 50.2% FG, 37.2% 3PT, 74% FT

Listed Size: 6'6", 210 lb, 6/1/1985 (24 years old)

(photo credit: Strotty's Blog)

About Him: When talking about Sam Young, undoubtedly the first thing that will come up is his athleticism - the guy is a freak. He is a long 6'6" that is strong as an ox and can jump out of the gym. He has quick feet and moves very well laterally. But there are two unique aspects to Young's profile that make him stand out - he played both the post and the wing in the Big East; and he is always hustling and playing hard (and as anyone will tell you, the most important trait for being a good defender is effort). Put all of that together, and you get a guy that projects very well as a defender on the next level.

Offensively, Young has a much lower ceiling. Surprisingly, his best offensive skill right now is his ability to catch-and-shoot (which is an unbelievable improvement from his freshman campaign). While is form is far from pretty, it is consistent, which is what made him Pitt's best perimeter shooter this past season. His release is fairly quick (he even added the ability to come off of screens and make shots) and he has range out to the college three point line. If he continues to work at it, becoming an NBA three point threat is likely.

Where Young struggles is when he is forced to put the ball on the floor. His handle is pretty weak, and while he was able to get to the rim in the Big East, a lot of that was due to his crazy, but effective, pump fake and his quick first step. He cannot change directions well, and is especially ineffective in situations where he has to create with the bounce (i.e. the pick and roll or leading the break).

Young's strength and athleticism allows him to be an excellent finisher in the paint. For starters, after playing the post for so long, he has an effective back to the basket game. He is also a fantastic finisher at the rim, especially when he gets out on the wing in transition.

Comparisons: Best Case: James Posey, Trenton Hassell with the T'Wolves; Worst Case: James Jones, Tony Allen.

Bottom Line: Young will probably never be a star in the league, but his defensive ability alone should keep him around the league. His work ethic and his ability to hit an open jumper should make him a very effective role player. He might be able to sneak in the end of the first round.


1 comment:

Andrew Reuss said...

Add 15 pounds and dude could play football, serious freak...