We all know drafting prospects is an inexact science. There are several busts at the top of every draft and despite this class being incredibly loaded with talent the top, this draft should repeat history and shell out a few busts. I think there are 6 players that set themselves apart from the others: Wiggins, Parker, Randle, Embiid, Smart, and Exum. (Some might include Aaron Gordon in this list but I will leave him out).
Of these 6 prospects, 1 will most likely be a downright bust, possibly 2. Surely 1 or more of these players will not reach their full potential. Also, 1 of these players will most likely exceed expectations.
Name your Player Who Will Bust, Player Who Will Not Reach Potential, and Player Who Will Exceed Expectaions. Choose from the 6 players listed above.
1. Bust- Julius Randle- I am sure most people will disagree with me but the I am in the same boat as the poster who recently posted about taking Embiid over Randle at #3. I don't see him finishing over people very often and usually scores through inside buckets that are physically forced, akward, and changing his shot angle. Somewhat creative but I think these shots will be blocked or altered by bigger and better NBA defenders. A man among boys now yes, but what about when he is a man among men? Also, his defense is atrocious. No effort. From a Bulls fan, I know all about a selfish PF who plays terrible defense. Picking a Bust out of these 6 is difficult to do, but out of them I am picking Randle. Am huge fans of the other 5 players and could not choose them.
2. Not reach potential - Andrew Wiggins. I don't think Wiggins will be a bust, but I don't think he will ever reach the lofty expectations and hype that he has gotten. I mean, I think he is the first person getting the LeBron comparison. Just like you should never give someone the MJ comp (deshawn stevenson), we should stop that with LeBron as well. The first thing I look at in a prospect and the most important question I ask myself is: Will this player do anything to win, and does their body language represent that throughout the enerity of the game? Wiggins fails that test when I watch him. There are some good reasons that he has gotten the LeBron comparsion, athletically he is pretty close. I don't think anyone who ever compared the two ever thought Wiggins would be the ball handler, and facilitator that Lebron is, but he will physically dominate some people with that combination of size, strength, and speed. Still, that characteristic that I value most important is the reason I don't think he will ever be truly great. He is still young and I do hope he finds that spark that allows to put out maximum effort every game and to do anything in order to win. He is a good kid it seems like so hopefully he figures it out. Still early in the year as well and I need to see me more of him, and everyone.
3. Exceed expectations- Marcus Smart. Like most people I have been raving about the top of this draft for sometime now. While I am still extremely high on this class, I obviously have some questions about them with my first two entries above. I have also always questioned Jabari's body and athleticism. He has surprised me with his athleticism early on this year and he answered some of my doubt, but I would really like to see him playing SF for Duke so I could see him guard wings and stay in front of them defensively. I am sure my opnion might change throughout the draft process but I would have a hard time not taking Smart #1. I am a huge fan of his and compare him to Jason Kidd. Not the passer and decision maker Kidd was, and Smart can play off the ball a little better. Smart is great on D and has size and a great work ethic. I liked him last year and he really sold me with his improved outside shot and stroke. I just think he is special and a leader.
I dont know if Randle will be an elite player in the NBA, but I personally cant see him being a bust. He plays so darn hard and energetic and that's the foundation on which his career will built on. I expect him to improve and be an offensive mismatch on a lot of nights. If he just doesnt become a defensive liability...I see him as bust proof....mainly because of his rebounding and open court abilities.
Seems a bit risky to predict busts when it's not even December...
Seems safe to criticize someone for going out on a limb...
Only risk is being wrong. I've done that plenty of times. Like I said, it is early and I need to see more, but you must have some type of thoughts and ideas to these questions already.
Not reach potential - Wiggins He has a ton of potential so this one is pretty easy... I'm just not sure if he will ever have that dominant mentality to become the superstar he should be.
Exceed expectations- Embiid If he gets into the right situation, works hard, and doesn't have injury issues, he could be the best center in the NBA. He has all the physical tools, is very young, still has a TON to learn, but is already pretty skilled and has nice touch around the rim for a big man.
Bust- Randle I agree with most of your points on him... I don't think any players will be considered a bust, but considering Randle is expected to be a future all star/super star he may fall short of those expectations but still be really good.
Wow does Boozer take a lot of shots on this site. But hard to disagree with you. Booz is not one to exert himself on the defensive end of the floor. Or, I should say, he makes the first attempt at defense, but when it calls for a rotation or additional effort, he is not there. It drives Thibs crazy.
Randle has been announted an future All Star by many posters, but I do not see it. He is 6'9 without elite strength and the arm length of Sg or Sf. How bad or good of a defender is he ? He does not have one elite skill or attribrute on the offensive end or defensive. It's hard not to get caught up in the college hype and not look at how his game is going to translate in the NBA. Derrick Williams, Beasley. His post game is ok, but it is more hustle and bullying. That play style is highly unlikely to be able to bring every night in the league against NBA players.
Randle is definetly more skilled then tyler hansbrough outside the paint, but what I'm seeing from randle is similar to what I saw from Psycho T leaving to the NBA. How good of a shooter is Randle ?
well, since you brought up Hansbrough....and thats my dude....but I always compare him to McRoberts. Josh was in the league 2 years before Psycho...yet he is more than 1 year younger. (Psycho just turned 28 and McRoberts is still 26)
point being, when Hansbrough came out, he was alreaady about as developed as he was going to get. Randle already has a pretty good skillset but still with so much room to improve. He is 18. Comparing his jumpshot to say a Hansbrough is not really valid because Hansbrough was almost 24 years old when he was drafted. Their motors are about the most they have in common...but one thing is for sure, Randle is a much more willing passer already who only figures to get better.
Bust: Embiid. I could definitely see Randle underachieving, he's a 6'8 post player. But I don't think he will be "bust" bad...Embiid is so much more raw than those other guys I could see him failing.
Not live up to expecations: Wiggins. They were just too insane. I think he will be a very very nice NBA player, but superstar? I need to see way more iso/put the ball on the floor game.
Surprise: Exum. Probably just a guess, I like what I have seen and I think he can be an elite guard in this league.
Who has compared Wiggins to LeBron? Honestly, I've heard more of people saying others compare him to LeBron than anybody really comparing him to LeBron.
One thing that I've worried about with Julius Randle is his size. He does look like a strong guy but on the same token his size doesn't jump out at you like it did with Anthony Davis, Derrick Favors, or DeMarcus Cousins when they were in college. And these are guys who he's going to have to defend. He only has a 6'10 or 11 wingspan combined with the fact that even though he's listed at 6'9 in college and high school we've all seen that become 6'7 or 6'8. He does play hard but so did Derrick Williams. I could be wrong so I'm not gonna state this as act but I would say best case scenario he becomes the next Paul Millsap.
As far as Wiggins I don't think that he will ever reach those lofty expectations placed upon him yet I don't think he will be a bust. I think he will be a bust like Vince Carter in the sense that you see the great physical talent and he does become a very good player with some great years but he won't play as well as you always thought he could and he won't maybe acheive the same team success as LeBron. Absolute best case scenario he becomes as good as Tracy McGrady during his Magic days which is a pretty big deal.
One player I do expect to succeed though is Jabari Parker. If there was ever any pre-draft comparison that was SPOT ON comparing Jabari to Carmelo is the one. He ploays the game the exact same way as Carmelo. While Jabari doesn't have the same amount of upside as Wiggins being compared to one of the top ten players of this generation is a pretty damn high ceiling to have. One thing that does worry me about him though is his athleticism. Even though Carmelo isn't the greatest athlete one thing that he always had the put him above other small forwards in the game was his ubsurdly quick first step. Carmelo always had deceptive quickness about him even though he wasn't as speedy as other guys in the game. He also at this point in time doesn't have the same amount of strength that Melo had when he was in college but obviously I expect this to improve over time. He also needs to make sure that he watches his weight because much like Melo he has the type of body that can get out of shape very easily.
I don't think Julius Randle will be a bust, because his motor will render him pretty effective on the glass, and his ability to hit free throws will help him capitalize offensively when getting fouled while rebounding.
His post moves will also translate, but his length will be an issue defensively. He has a long way to go on that end, but all in all, I think you have a double double NBA player, who will have to work to be a decent defender. David Lee and Blake Griffin are similar players, who came in able to impact the points and rebound columns, but it took a few years to become average defenders. I feel Randle will follow a similar path, making an immediate impact, but easing into becoming and average defensive player.
I'd bet he'll be a success, but I also wouldn't be surprised if players that were drafted after him ended up better pros than he.
I don't think Wiggins will bust either, it may take him a little longer to reach his peak, but he's got ball handling, an outside shot ( 40% from 3 this year) and a nice array of spins and floaters. His length defensively, and 2nd jump ability will translate as an NBA defender, and he does need about 20 lbs of muscle, but that will come in time, and may even make him a little more athletic ( a la Durant ).
He just needs more reps and to expand on his game. That will come in time, but I do see Wiggins being a Paul George type of two way wing player, who will be elite in time, but might not hit his stride until his 3rd year. The only way, IMO, he could be considered a disappointment is if the Lebron comparisons linger...I mean, Lebron has 4 MVP's before age 30, that's a tough act to follow.
Most Likely to Bust-Joel Embiid and Dante Exum (Raw C's and International players are a safe bet to bust)
Most Likely to not reach potential but still become an All Star (Andrew Wiggins, Marcus Smart and Julius Randle)
Most Likely to lead the league in scoring before he turns 25 (Jabarri Parker)
Mot Likely to exceed expectations (James Young and Wayne Seldon)
Most Likely to fly up draft boards after the Combine (Rodney Hood)
Most Likely to return to school and become the # 1 pick next year (Aaron Gordon)