This was the NBA Rumor Post on ESPN by Joe Kaiser:
"New Mexico forward Tony Snell is a defensive-minded small forward who reportedly has solidified a spot in the first round of this month's draft, per Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports.
If there's a player in this draft who compares closest to Kawhi Leonard, it's probably Snell, and given the perception of Leonard after what he's done in the playoffs that certainly can only help Snell's stock. So what teams might consider drafting him? Lets take a look.
Snell is currently No. 36 on the Big Board, so if he is taken in the first round it probably won't be until the latter half of the round. Teams with picks in that range that might be interested in adding a defender at the 3 include Atlanta (pick No. 17 and 18), Cleveland (No. 19), Utah (No. 21) Los Angeles Clippers (No. 25) and Minnesota (No. 26)"
Snell averaged 13 PPG, 3 RPG, 3 APG on 42% FG, 39% 3FG, with little impact on defense (average)
Leonard averaged 16 PPG, 10 RPG, 3 APG on 45% FG, 29% 3FG, with an good impact on defense
Snell is a high volume outside shooter who can get hot in a hurry
Leonard plays inside out and has a huge impact on the boards and a good impact defense.
They are similar athletically, but they use their athleticism in different ways.
Honestly, did Kaiser just look at their profile pictures, see that they were both black with similar hair, bang his head on the keyboard a few times, and send off the post to the editors?
I think Kahwhi Leonard is just going to be the new go to comparison for young small forwards who project as defenders. Kind of like how when a SG projects as a good defender the default is Tony Allen.
I don't think they're even remotely alike. Leonard had a lousy outside at San Diego State, whereas Snell has a good outside shot. Also, Leonard is a better defender than Snell was in college. Finally, Leonard has a higher aggression level than Snell.
One last thing. You could tell by watching Kawhi Leonard at San Diego State that he was an NBA player. I didn't get that impression watching Tony Snell at New Mexico. I had no idea he was even on the draft radar until he entered the draft.
The fact that Snell only averaged 3 rebounds per game (which is atrocious) scares the hell out of me. I really hope the Cavs don't take him at 19, but I'd be OK with him if its one our 2nd round picks.
Also important to note that Kawhi Leonard has built a reputation as a hard worker and constantly playing at a high level, Snell is known to take plays off and can get passive.
From Former high school teammates to being compared as prospects.
Snell is a guard and not in any way should he be compared to Leonard. Maybe you went there because they both played in the Mountain West?
They're both 3 and D wings with braids that went to the same prep school. That's where the comparison ends. Snell is long, Leonard is longer. Leonard also played PF in college which is one of the reasons he dropped to where he did. Scouts were concerned about how his perimeter skills would translate. He wasn't a ball-handler, still isn't, and he only shot 29% from 3 his final yr at SD St. In college Leonard was one of the best rebounders in the nation as well because of his length, strength, effort and huge hands. Snell gets like what, 2-3 boards a game, which, if you look at that number for an athletic 6'7 player with length, you kinda have to question his effort level and aggressiveness. Snell however is quicker, has more potential to guard quicker 2's and his outside shot is more advanced at a similar stage. Snell's frame isn't as bad as advertised, but I don't think he'll ever be as strong as Kawhi is. Kawhi's strength combined with his length are the reasons he can check LeBron and those stronger wings better than most. He's done a better job handling Lebron's strength better than Paul George, who's the more highly regarded wing defender. I don't think Snell will have that luxury. I think the best position for him to defend will be SGs. He certainly has the lateral quickness to do so (2nd best agility time in the combine).
I think Snell can be a good complementary player because of his 3 and D potential, but I think he's more comparable to Thabo Sefolosha than Kawhi, because of the difference in strength and aggressiveness.
I don't see anyone in the first round being a Kawhi Leonard 2.0. Leonard is a heck of a player with freakish length and a great motor. He's one of the best 3 or 4 guys in this series so far. Great rebounding and defense. He has also scored on offense and showed some range.
I don't know much about Tony Snell. But the odds are he won't be neutralizing LeBron and rebounding like a mad man in the Finals any time soon.
At times Kawhi Leonard is looking like Scottie Pippen out there. Before the series I thought that the Spurs third guy was Kawhi Leonard, not Manu. Kawhi is definitely a legit third guy. He actually looks like a cross between Pippen and Rodman. Lots of Pippen there but the passing and ball handling isn't quite there yet.
If a team is looking for a POOR MAN'S Kawhi Leonard, then I think D.J. Stephens fits the bill. Stephens is an even better athlete with a comparable motor. However, Leonard looks like he has better and bigger hands. Kawhi is a bit taller and possibly even longer, although DJ is about 6'5 and a half with a 7 foot wingspan. DJ might be more of an energy guy since he can feed the crowd and his teammates with jaw dropping dunks. ... Stephens' shot doesn't look like it's there yet, but he did shoot 34% on 3's on a limited amount of attempts so there is potential. Stephens is a very good shot blocker, better than Kawhi so that should help. DJ rebounded very well as a senior so hopefully that translates to the NBA. Stephens has some holes in his game and is still pretty raw, but he has elite athleticism, a great motor, and very good length.
I think the Spurs should look at him with the 58th pick (if he is there) as a third young wing man behind Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard. With Manu completing the wing core. I also think the Spurs could play some small ball with Leonard and Stephens at the forward spots then a center like Splitter inside.
The "next Kawhi Leonard" would go number one in this draft.
I doubt it considering the real Kawhi Leonard didn't even go in the lottery in 2011 which wasn't exactly a stacked draft.
If you redrrafted 2011 it would go something like this
1. Kyrie Irving -1st
2. Klay Thompson - 11th
3. Jonas Valančiūnas- 5th
4. Kemba Walker -9th
5. Kawhi Leonard -15th
6.Chandler Parsons - 38th
7.Kenneth Faried - 22nd
8.Brandon Knight- 8th
9.Nikola Vucevic -16th
10. Tristan Thompson -4th
11. Jimmy Butler -30th
12. Enes Kanter -3rd ( I like his game and think he could move up this year with bigger minutes)
13. Derrick Williams- 2nd (He played well at PF with Love out and could blossom if traded)
14.Iman Shumpert -17th
15. Tobias Harris - 19th (Averaged 17 and 8.5 in 27 games with Orlando)
They got the same comparison because they both have cornrows...Other then that I don't see it.
when they hit a certain negative number? It gets annoying trying to read some of these threads when idiots are posting just to hear themselves talk.
The Cavs would trade this year's top pick for Kawhi Leonard.
Does Tony Snell compare well to Wes Johnson?
It's not a terrible comparison. I think Snell is more fluid and quicker laterally. Playing for Alford, he's well versed in half court movement and already knows how to come off of screens and shoot on the move. Wes wasn't really used like that. He was more of an athletic standstill shooter and cutter, who was an athletic mismatch vs college 3's and 4's. I think Snell will primarily be used as a spot up shooter on offense, but can also be used in some single/double sets.
I also think Snell has slightly better ball skills.
I may get negged for this, but I think Tony Snell is closer to DeMarre Carroll then Kawhi Leonard
DeMarre Carroll played the 4 at Missouri and had a weird junk offensive game that was effective despite not looking pretty. Snell has a great stroke and isn't quite the banger Carroll was.
At an NBA level, I think Snell will be similar to Brandon Rush.