NBA Draft Combine Report Part 1

Sun, 05/22/2016 - 5:05am

Team 1

Anthony Barber, NC State
Game 1: 22 minutes, 13 points (5-10 FG, 0-1 3PT, 3-4 FT), six assists, three rebounds
Game 2: Did not play

Cat BarberCat BarberAlthough he sat out the second game due to injury, the junior point guard was solid in the opener as he was able to get in the paint and make plays as a scorer or distributor. With solid size at nearly 6-foot-3, Anthony "Cat" Barber also has the benefit of owning a 6'5.5" wingspan that will help him on the defensive end.

A potential late first, early second-round pick, Barber signed with an agent and opted to leave school, in-part, to help take care of his family, so he's committed to staying through the process and trying to work his way up draft boards. Barber will have to show that he can be a consistent three-point shooter and adequate floor leader who limits turnovers, but he does have tools to work with and had a huge season in the ACC.

Patrick McCaw, UNLV
Game 1: 19 minutes, eight points (2-5 FG, 0-2 3PT, 4-6 FT), four steals, one rebound
Game 2: 17 minutes, 14 points (5-9 FG, 1-4 3PT, 3-3 FT), four assists, three rebounds, two steals

After flashes of strong play during his sophomore season at UNLV, the 6'7" guard is an intriguing long-term prospect because he can defend multiple spots on the floor and is a solid athlete.

Still a little bit raw on the offensive end, McCaw can hover between a few spots on that side of the ball, but he really shined defensively in Chicago. With a 6'10" wingspan, McCaw was able to collect six steals among two games and was also very good contesting shots and staying with smaller players. McCaw moves well laterally, so he can switch on the perimeter and stick some smaller and quicker guards and give them problems with his length.

His perimeter jumper is still a work in progress, but McCaw has the kind of tools and upside to be an intriguing late first-round or early second-round pick.

Caleb Swanigan, Purdue
Game 1: 15 minutes, five points (2-4 FG, 0-0 3PT, 1-3 FT), five rebounds, one block
Game 2: 26 minutes, four points (1-3 FG, 0-0 3PT, 2-4 FT), three rebounds, three assists

It wasn't the best combine for the Purdue freshman big man, as Swanigan was dealing with a calf injury and only at about 85 percent. Since he's had to focus on therapy and not working out, Swanigan didn't play as many minutes on the opening day, but got a little more settled in on day two.

Rebounding is Swanigan's calling card, as he did an okay job of cleaning up his area on the glass. But offensively, Swanigan wasn't very assertive, as he looked like he had some issues with length and athleticism against opposing bigs.

Given the injury, his current skill level and Purdue likely being a top-25 team next year, Swanigan might be wise to look at returning for his sophomore season. He would still play with a good Purdue front court in practice every day and have a chance to grow his game.

Jaron Blossomgame, Clemson
Game 1: 31 minutes, 11 points (3-5 FG, 1-1 3PT, 4-5 FT), five rebounds, one steal
Game 2: 21 minutes, 16 points (5-6 FG, 3-3 3PT, 3-4 FT), 10 rebounds

The redshirt junior wing showed some promising developments to his game in Chicago, including a workable perimeter jumper. By knocking down three-pointers at a decent clip, Blossomgame showed that he might be capable of extending his range to consistently knocks down shots.

Measuring in at 6-foot-7 with a 6'10" wingspan, Blossomgame also contributed on the glass in both games and defended multiple positions on the floor. With the way he played at the combine, and already being 22 years old, Blossomgame might opt to stay in the draft if he can make an NBA roster next season. With the way he was able to hit some shots and defend multiple positions, Blossomgame looks like a potential second-round pick with some room to grow.

Robert Carter Jr., Maryland
Game 1: 26 minutes, 22 points (8-15 FG, 2-3 3PT, 4-8 FT), seven rebounds, four steals
Game 2: 19 minutes, 13 points (5-9 FG, 0-2 3PT, 3-3 FT), six rebounds

One of the pleasant surprises of the combine was the play of the Maryland junior big man, as he showed some unexpected deep range to go along with some solid work all over the floor. Coming in at 6'9", 251 pounds, Carter is intriguing at the next level if he can stretch the floor and still play a bit on the interior.

With a 7'3.25" wingspan, Carter can guard a couple of bigger players on the interior with his good length and he should solidly be in the second-round picture after the way he played in Chicago.

Joel Bolomboy, Weber State
Game 1: 18 minutes, five points (2-3 FG, 0-0 3PT, 1-2 FT), one steal
Game 2: 25 minutes, 10 points (4-5 FG, 0-0 3PT, 2-2 FT), nine rebounds, two assists

It took the Weber State product a day to feel comfortable, but he had an outstanding second game with a near double-double as he rebounded well in his area.

It's going to take an adjustment period for Bolomboy to play against the top competition in the world, but he has the raw skills as a rebounder to contribute as a role guy off the bench. Offensively, Bolomboy was better than expected as he showed some intriguing touch as a shooter (with a slight hitch in his jumper) and also had some finishes off of pick-and-rolls.

Bolomboy is raw and played in a small league, but he has a calling card skill and could attract second-round attention as an energy big.

AJ English, Iona
Game 1: 21 minutes, 22 points (7-10 FG, 3-5 3PT, 5-5 FT), four assists, three rebounds
Game 2: 27 minutes, nine points (3-8 FG, 1-2 2PT, 2-3 FT), six assists

Producing at a decent clip during the combine was the senior from Iona as he showed why he was one of college basketball's most lethal scorers this past season.

English was very good scoring the ball on the first day and he also mixed in some good assist numbers in both contests as well. With a 6'10" wingspan to go with his 6'3" frame, English measured with good length and could be a defender with room to grow at the next level.

It remains to be seen if a team wants to take a second-round chance on English, but he didn't hurt himself at all with his play.

Dorian Finney Smith, Florida
Game 1: 22 minutes, two points (1-4 FG, 0-2 3PT, 0-0 FT), six rebounds, three steals, two assists.
Game 2: 31 minutes, 16 points (5-12 FG, 1-2 3PT, 5-7 FT), three assists, two steals, two blocks

The 23-year-old senior wing from Florida was inconsistent as a scorer, but he did a nice job of filling up the stat sheet in both outings at the combine after a solid showing at Portsmouth.

Finney-Smith could get some second-round buzz for a team looking for a jack-of-all trades wing who can defend a couple of positions, but he has to make sure that his perimeter jumper is consistent in order to earn early minutes.

With a nearly 7-foot wingspan on the wing, Finney-Smith could become a tough defender on the wing at the next level.

Sheldon McClellan, Miami
Game 1: 21 minutes, eight points (3-5 FG, 1-1 3PT, 1-2 FT), two rebounds
Game 2: 31 minutes, 22 points (5-9 FG, 3-5 3PT, 9-12 FT), three assists, two rebounds

After a solid senior season at Florida, McCllelan made the most of his second day of the combine, as he took advantage of Cat Barber's absence to score 22 points on an array of different moves.

A solid perimeter shooter, McClellan also showed that he can get off some shots from the mid-range and get to the charity stripe as well, as his aggressive play got him 12 trips there in the second game.

McClellan has an outside chance of being drafted, but he has to continue to shoot the ball at a high level and show that he can defend wings at the next level.

Team 2

Khalil Felder, Oakland
Game 1: 23 minutes, 11 points (4-7 FG, 0-1 3PT, 3-3 FT), four assists, four steals
Game 2: 23 minutes, 12 points (6-11 FG, 0-2 3PT, 0-2 FT), three assists, two steals

The small point guard from Oakland proved that he can play with the big boys at the combine as he operated pick-and-rolls, got in the paint frequently and also showed that he was a willing perimeter defender.

Even though he only stands 5'9.5" in shoes, "Kay" makes up for that with good burst and a strong vertical leap that helps him elevate higher than his limited height might suggest.

Defensively, Felder showed a lot more intensity than he did during the season, possibly because he didn't have to carry his team's offense. He did a nice job sticking on ball handlers and weaving through traffic off the ball to not get caught up in screens.

Georges Niang, Iowa State
Game 1: 20 minutes, 20 points (8-12 FG, 1-2 3PT, 3-3 FT), three rebounds, three assists
Game 2: 23 minutes, 10 points (4-11 FG, 0-2 3PT, 2-2 FT), five rebounds

Much like he did at Iowa State, Niang showed a penchant for scoring in unique ways as he put up double-figures in both games.

Doing that against potential second-round picks is one thing, but it will remain to be seen how Niang looks playing against elite athletes that can match his skill level. Although he hit a three-pointer, Niang didn't take too many perimeter shots, but you also have to give him credit for not playing too much outside of his comfort zone.

It's hard to see Niang getting drafted because of his limited mobility and athleticism, but he's skilled enough to carve out a career elsewhere for many, many years.

Nigel Hayes, Wisconsin
Game 1: 21 minutes, two points (0-2 FG, 0-1 3PT, 2-2 FT), three assists
Game 2: 18 minutes, two points (1-3 FG, 0-1 3PT, 0-0 FT), one rebound, one assist

Playing extremely passively at the combine was the Wisconsin junior forward, as he only took five field goal attempts during two games and didn't do much else on the stat sheet.

Hayes is certainly skilled and he's shown up to play in some big games the last few years, but his shot selection also needs to greatly improve and he has to be more consistent shooting the ball in general.

Wisconsin returns all five starters from a Sweet 16 team if Hayes comes back, so he does have a good situation to return to if he goes back to school.

Michael Gbinije, Syracuse
Game 1: 28 minutes, 13 points (4-8 FG, 2-4 3PT, 3-4 FT), three rebounds, three steals, two assists
Game 2: 27 minutes, 17 points (7-12 FG, 2-4 3PT, 1-2 FT), four assists, four steals, two rebounds

Looking like a potential second-round pick in Chicago was the Syracuse senior, as the 6'7" wing showed off skills in all sorts of ways during his two combine games.

Gbinije was used in all sorts of unique situations in Syracuse's offense this past season and he was decent shooting the ball from the perimeter at the combine, making 4-for-8 from three-point range. A decent athlete with good size for the position, Gbinije can initiate some high ball screens as a ball handler and he has a decent feel for how to operate in those settings.

His upside is limited since he's almost 24 and spent five years in school, but Gbinije has been productive during both his senior year and the combine, so he could get a shot to make a team.

Cheick Diallo, Kansas
Game 1: 22 minutes, 18 points (7-10 FG, 0-0 3PT, 4-5 FT), four rebounds, four blocks
Game 2: 22 minutes, nine points (4-8 FG, 0-0 3PT, 1-1 FT), 10 rebounds, two blocks

Cheick DialloCheick DialloHelping himself as much as anyone in the camp was Diallo, who only totaled slightly above 200 minutes during his freshman season at Kansas.

Playing with a lot of activity, Diallo hustled up-and-down the floor and looked good in the combine's up-and-down setting, much like he did last spring on the high school all-star game circuit.

Diallo is going to have to add strength to his 219-pound frame, but his 7'4.5" wingspan helps him defend the rim and rebound at rim level. Offensively, Diallo is still a ways to go, as he doesn't have a go-to move and is at his best making energy plays, but he plays with enough of a motor that he can be a productive big.

Workouts will dictate a lot for Diallo the next few weeks, but he played like a potential late first-round pick at the combine.

Daniel Hamilton, UConn
Game 1: 24 minutes, 2 points (1-6 FG, 0-2 3PT, 0-0 FT), four rebounds, two assists
Game 2: 20 minutes, 11 points (3-8 FG, 1-3 3PT, 4-4 FT), 12 rebounds, one assist

It wasn't a great combine for Hamilton, who was better on the second day after a bad first day. The UConn product measured very poorly in athletic testing -- especially the vertical leap components -- and he looked lost on the first day of the combine.

The second day, Hamilton had some stretches of stronger play, as he pulled down a double-double and also had some hockey assists while attacking via the drive. But with his poor athletic testing and inconsistent jumper, it's hard to see Hamilton getting drafted much earlier than the end of the 2nd round at this point.

Gary Payton II, Oregon State
Game 1: 23 minutes, eight points (4-6 FG, 0-0 3PT, 0-0 FT), four assists, one steal
Game 2: 23 minutes, six points (3-11 FG, 0-3 3PT, 0-0 FT), six rebounds, four assists, two steals

The son of the Glove, Gary Payton II had some spurts of solid play at the combine after a very good college career.

Finding his scoring touch and perimeter shooting stroke was difficult, but Payton stayed busy in other facets of the game as he did a nice job distributing in both games while also defending on the perimeter.

Payton also registered the lowest body fat percentage of any player at the combine, so he's in peak physical condition as he's one of the most NBA-ready potential second-round picks. At 6'3" with a 6'8" wingspan, Payton has good measurables, is a plus athlete and a plus defender, so he should get plenty of attention for a spot in round two.

Kyle Wiltjer, Gonzaga
Game 1: 21 minutes, 17 points (6-12 FG, 3-8 3PT, 2-2 FT), six rebounds
Game 2: 23 minutes, 14 points (5-15 FG, 4-10 3PT, 0-0 FT), four rebounds, four steals

The former McDonald's All-American showed that he can space the floor as a forward, but he still has a very tough time creating space for his jumper while also being a poor athlete for this kind of setting.

Registering the highest body-fat percentage at the combine at 15.3 percent, Wiltjer doesn't move well laterally and doesn't get much lift. Almost all of his offense is catch-and-shoot scenarios because Wiltjer has a tough time creating space once he tries to put it on the floor.

He'll still have value to teams looking for a floor-spacing big, but Wiltjer is likely headed to Europe or the D League, because he doesn't possess the athleticism to be able to defend or create clean looks at the NBA level.

Marcus Lee, Kentucky
Game 1: 16 minutes, two points (1-3 FG, 0-0 3PT, 0-2 FT), two rebounds, two assists
Game 2: 18 minutes, two points (0-3 FG, 0-0 3PT, 2-4 FT), one rebound, one block

One of the most disappointing players at the combine was the Kentucky junior big man. Lee barely made a blip in game action as he had minimal stat lines and just didn't seem like he belonged in a lot of cases.

Also coming in with disappointing athletic testing and a low playing weight, Lee looks like he's worlds away -- especially offensively -- from competing at the NBA level. Another year at Kentucky might not do Lee much good since Bam Adebayo and Wenyen Gabriel are coming in, so he might be best served to spend some time developing in the D League instead so he can start adjusting to the pro game.

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