Thursday, May 27, 2010

NBA Draft Prospects: Derrick Favors, Georgia Tech

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Stats: 12.4 ppg, 8.4 rpg, 2.1 bpg, 61.1% FG

Listed Size: 6'10", 246 lb, 18 years old

About Him: Derrick Favors was one of the most sought after recruits in the class of 2009, and with that came quite a bit of expectation heading into his freshman season at Georgia Tech. While his averages of 12 points, 8 boards, and 2 blocks are far from poor, given the success that freshman have at the collegiate level these days, its hard to say he wasn't a bit of a disappointment.

Some of that wasn't all his fault. For starters, he played on a Georgia Tech team that struggled offensively in the half court, that lacked a true point guard, and that also boasted Gani Lawal in the front court. As gifted as he is, Favors only got 8 FGA per game.

'Gifted' is really the best way to describe Favors right now. He is still just 18 years old, and that youth shows through when talking about his skill set. In other words, Favors has a long way to go on the offensive end before he is much more than a catch-and-dunk kind of player. He doesn't have much of a back-to-the-basket game, and while every once in a while he would hit a pretty looking turnaround or jump hook, he really lacks any semblance of a go-to move. His left hand needs work around the rim, and his ball-handling and jump shot will take some time to get better.

But what makes Favors so enticing is that he is absurdly athletic. He's been compared to Dwight Howard when it comes to his tools, and that may not even be a reach. Favors is 6'8 3/4" without shoes (just 1/4" of an inch shorter than Howard), has a 7'4" wingspan (just a 1/2" shorter than Howard), checks in at 246 lb, and has a frame that can certainly put on quite a bit of muscle (to say he has broad shoulders would be an understatement). Beyond that, Favors can also get off the floor, as his maximum was 12'1 1/2". That's insanely high. Once he adds a bit of muscle to his frame, he should be able to play some center in the league.

Favors is mobile, he has quick feet (although his footwork is still a bit choppy), he can run the floor and finish in transition, and he looked good in the pick-and-roll in the limited opportunities he got with the Yellow Jackets this year. When you are looking for a prototype NBA big man, Favors is the mold you make.


  • Best Case Scenario: Dwight Howard, Amare Stoudmire, and Chris Bosh, although I've seen him compared to Antonio McDyess in his prime, Emeka Okafor, and Al Horford, as well, and I think those may be more accurate.
  • Worst Case Scenario: How many big men have we seen drafted based on potential that never live up to the hype in the league? Tyrus Thomas works for me.
Outlook: Derrick Favors has the potential to be a 24-12-3 player in the NBA, but he has a ways to go before he gets there. If he works hard and ends up in a place that allows him to flourish, there is no reason he can't end up as one of the top five big men in the NBA. But like I said, that is going to take quite a bit of work and a whole lot of coaching.


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