Isaiah Miles, Saint Joseph’s
Game 1: 20 minutes, six points (2-8 FG, 0-1 3PT, 2-2 FT), six rebounds, one assist
Game 2: 18 minutes, 21 points (6-10 FG, 1-4 3PT, 8-8 FT), six rebounds, two assists
During the first day of action, Miles was trying to find his place within the flow of the game, and he showed some decent production, but a 2-for-8 start was not ideal. On the second day, Miles put everything together for a very good 21-point performance in which he was 6-for-10 from the floor and 8-for-8 from the free-throw line.
But it remains to be seen if Miles is a future NBA player. He measured on the small side for a forward at 6’7.25" and he doesn’t have a great perimeter jumper to help him space the floor. Because of his lack of size and athleticism, Miles likely won’t be drafted, but he’s been productive enough in college and in this setting where he certainly deserves a look at some other levels to see if he can increase his skill level as a shooter.
Troy Williams, Indiana
Game 1: 20 minutes, 10 points (4-14 FG, 2-3 3PT, 0-1 FT), five rebounds
Game 2: 18 minutes, seven points (3-5 FG, 1-1 3PT, 0-0 FT), three rebounds
It wasn’t a strong showing from the Indiana junior forward as Williams looked wild throughout the whole combine. Williams is an athletic wing who has a lot of positive traits that NBA teams look for out of a wing, but his skill level is still lacking a little bit — he struggles to use his left at times — and his decision-making leaves a lot to be desired. Too many times, Williams gets a full head of steam and just has no clue what to do next.
Should he return for another year at Indiana, Williams has a chance to be a senior on a potential top-15 team, which could help him develop more for the next draft. If he does decide to stay in the draft, Williams could potentially get taken in the second round to a team that sees the positives and wants to develop him.
Chinanu Onuaku, Louisville
Game 1: 21 minutes, 11 points (4-6 FG, 0-0 3PT, 2-5 FT), seven rebounds, two assists
Game 2: 21 minutes, 10 points (5-7 FG, 0-0 3PT, 0-0 FT), three rebounds, three blocks, three steals
A solid combine from the Louisville sophomore big man showed that he’ll have a chance to be a rotation big man in the NBA some day. At the combine, Onuaku showed that he can rebound, defend the rim, rotate on help defense and also displayed some okay touch around the basket.
Some teams are going to be concerned about Onuaku’s heart procedure that he recently had, but there is no doubt that given his young age for his grade (he’s still only 19) and ability to play on the interior that Onuaku stands a chance to be a second-round pick.
Ron Baker, Wichita State
Game 1: 21 minutes, eight points (3-5 FG, 0-2 3PT, 2-3 FT), four steals, two assists
Game 2: 21 minutes, 11 points (3-10 FG, 2-4 3PT, 3-3 FT), three rebounds
This probably wasn’t the right setting for Baker to showcase his abilities, but he still remained productive in both games despite some mediocre shooting in the second contest.
The good news is that Baker measured in with a 6’9.75 wingspan, so he should be able to defend multiple guard spots at the NBA level, especially after playing for a tough, defensive-minded college coach like Gregg Marshall at Wichita State.
Baker could potentially get taken in the second round and some teams appear to be high on him to potentially make a roster if he’s able to find the right fit. Perimeter shooting in workouts could be a big key to where Baker finds himself playing next season.
Melo Trimble, Maryland
Game 1: 21 minutes, five points (2-8 FG, 1-2 3PT,0-0 FT), two assists
Game 2: 18 minutes, 10 points (4-10 FG, 1-4 3PT, 1-2 FT), four assists, three rebounds
It was not a very good combine for Trimble, as he measured poorly with a 6-foot-2 wingspan and also didn’t perform very well in combine games. Shooting poorly from the perimeter and not defending very well is not a good recipe to get drafted, but Trimble is in the tough position of potentially returning to a Maryland team in which he would be the only returning starter.
Trimble would be best served returning to school, as he can show that he’s an improved floor leader with a steady jumper. It’s hard to say if Trimble has the athleticism to be a good defender, but he has to get in better shape if he hopes to have a chance in that category.
Dedric Lawson, Memphis
Game 1: 19 minutes, five points (1-5 FG, 0-1 3PT, 3-3 FT), six rebounds
Game 2: 18 minutes, five points (2-5 FG, 0-0 3PT, 1-1 FT), two assists
Struggling mightily at the combine was the Memphis forward, as he was one of the youngest players in attendance and also one of the players that looked completely in over his head.
Already heading back to school for his sophomore season, Lawson appears to have made the right decision. After a productive freshman season, Lawson can build on last season and try to improve his combine-worst athletic testing. If Lawson can knock down perimeter shots and show that he’s a steady rebounder, he’s still young enough to have a chance, but this combine showed that he might still be a few years away.
Justin Jackson, North Carolina
Game 1: 19 minutes, seven points (2-8 FG, 1-4 3PT, 2-2 FT), one rebound
Game 2: 21 minutes, eight points (3-6 FG, 1-3 3PT, 1-1 FT), three rebounds
Also returning to school next season will be Jackson, as he appears to have made the right call. Coming into the combine, teams wanted to see if Jackson could knock down perimeter shots, create his own looks and also how he was in the strength department.
After struggling to knock down three-pointers and only weighing in at 193 pounds, Jackson has another year at North Carolina to focus on his perimeter jumper and getting in the weight room. Jackson doesn’t do a great job of creating separation on his scoring moves, but he’s also tall enough that he can potentially shoot over some smaller defenders if he improves his jumper. Jackson could have been a second-round pick this year, but could potentially work himself into the late first round with a strong junior season.
Josh Hart, Villanova
Game 1: 18 minutes, two points (0-5 FG, 0-3 3PT, 2-4 FT), eight rebounds, two steals
Game 2: 18 minutes, four points (1-4 FG, 0-1 3PT, 2-4 FT), four steals
Coming off of a national championship, the junior guard was sitting in strong position to make a good decision. If he had a good combine, Hart could leave school as a national champion, but he could always return to Villanova and a top-5 team if he came back to school.
After struggling to shoot and find ways to score at the combine, Hart might be best served with another year in school. Although he still rebounds and defends very well for a guard, Hart still needs to figure out what he’s going to be on the offensive end at the NBA level. Hart would potentially be a second-round pick if he stayed in the draft, but he really needs to hone in on his offensive skill level if he wants consistent NBA minutes.
Isaiah Cousins, Oklahoma
Game 1: 18 minutes, seven points (3-8 FG, 0-1 3PT, 1-1 FT), three rebounds, three assists
Game 2: 21 minutes, eight points (3-9 FG, 2-2 3PT, 0-0 FT), eight assists, seven rebounds
Certainly passing the "look" test was the Oklahoma senior guard, as Cousins is tall, smooth and has a natural way about him on the floor. With great size (6’4.5") and wingspan (6’6.25"), Cousins should be able to defend both guard spots and he can play a little bit on or off the ball.
The major question becomes how Cousins looks as a point guard and if he can consistently knock down perimeter shots. At Oklahoma this season, Cousins could get frustrated into taking bad shots and forcing things even though he had a lethal scorer like Buddy Hield playing with him. Cousins forced the issue a bit at the combine as well, but he also showed some promise with eight assists on the second day while also going 2-for-2 from three-point range.
Because of his size and skill, Cousins is potentially a second-round pick who has some intriguing upside at point guard with his size.
Jarrod Uthoff, Iowa
Game 1: 18 minutes, eight points (3-12 FG, 0-5 3PT, 2-2 FT), four rebounds, two rebounds
Game 2: 21 minutes, seven points (3-6 FG, 1-2 3PT, 0-0 FT), four rebounds, three assists
Struggling against elite length and athleticism was the Iowa senior forward, as Uthoff went 6-for-18 from the field and 1-for-7 from three during his two combine games. If Uthoff can’t knock down three-pointers as a floor-spacing forward, than his value is shaky at best, because he can’t create much of his own offense and he’s not a good athlete.
It’s doubtful that Uthoff would be drafted, as he may be better suited to try his game in the D League or Europe. Although he blocked a lot of shots at Iowa during his senior season, it’ll be interesting to see if that translates to the pro level.
Ben Bentil, Providence
Game 1: 20 minutes, 15 points (5-8 FG, 2-4 3PT, 3-4 FT), 11 rebounds, three assists
Game 2: 19 minutes, 17 points (7-16 FG, 1-5 3PT, 2-2 FT), six rebounds
It appears that Bentil is staying in the Draft and that might be a solid decision coming off of a good combine performance.
A double-double in the first game with multiple three-pointers showed that Bentil can do a little bit of everything and that he was capable of being productive without an elite college floor leader like Kris Dunn getting him the ball.
Sometimes Bentil can get tunnel vision as he starts to hunt his own offense way too much, but he has the floor-spacing ability at forward that a lot of teams are looking for. With a 7’1.5" wingspan, Bentil also had a solid camp in terms of measurements and he should be able to rebound effectively for his position at the next level.
DeAndre Bembry, Saint Joseph’s
Game 1: 21 minutes, 18 points (8-12 FG, 1-2 3PT, 1-1 FT), four rebounds, three assists
Game 2: 25 minutes, five points (2-6 FG, 1-3 3PT, 0-2 FT), four rebounds, three assists
The do-it-all wing from Saint Joe’s was very good at times during the combine and he also had solid measurements and combine games.
With a 6’9.25" wingspan, Bembry might be able to guard a few spots on the floor from the wing as he was better as a defender at the combine than he showed during the college season.
Offensively, Bembry shined as a versatile wing who can score a little bit and also create for others. Bembry has good vision, can operate some high ball screens and also knows how to move well without the ball. If Bembry knocks down perimeter jumpers consistently during team workouts, he could be the type of player who sneaks into the late first round because he just has so many unique things to offer.
Pascal Siakam, New Mexico State
Game 1: 24 minutes, 12 points (5-9 FG, 0-0 3PT, 2-3 FT), seven rebounds, one assist
Game 2: 20 minutes, eight points (4-9 FG, 0-0 3PT, 0-0 FT), 10 rebounds, one block
One of the more intriguing prospects at the combine was the New Mexico State junior forward, who measured in with a 7’3" wingspan and showed that he can impact the game a bit with his length and athleticism.
Although he’s still raw offensively, Siakam has a very high motor and his athleticism means he can be a presence on defense with his length and solid mobility. Since he runs the floor well, Siakam was also able to run past opposing big men for some easy finishes on the other end, though he shied away from taking any midrange or outside shots.
If Siakam can show any kind of offensive ability outside of five feet, he’s going to rocket up draft boards, and possibly end up in the first round.
Malik Newman, Mississippi State
Game 1: 20 minutes, six points (2-8 FG, 2-4 3PT, 0-0 FT), four rebounds, one steal
Game 2: 23 minutes, seven points (3-7 FG, 0-1 3PT, 0-0 FT), two rebounds, one assist
The NBA Draft Combine saw a lot of potential draft picks take the floor in Chicago last week as four teams of draft hopefuls had scrimmages in front of NBA personnel and scouts.
Here’s a look at how Team 3 and Team 4 looked at the combine, complete with game stats and a look on where things might be headed for the future in terms of draft position for each player.
The Mississippi State freshman was shaky during the college season and he was inconsistent at the combine as well.
An undersized two-guard, Newman has always been streaky as a shooter and that was on display at the combine. Newman has the ability to get on a roll as he can rise-and-fire on off-the-dribble three-pointers, but he’s way too inconsistent as a shooter at this point for many teams to feel comfortable taking him.
With the ball in his hands, Newman doesn’t make others better and he has to be more reliable in a number of areas if he wants to get picked in the second round.
Marcus Paige, North Carolina
Game 1: 22 minutes, eight points (3-8 FG, 2-5 3PT, 0-0 FT), five assists, three steals
Game 2: 23 minutes, 16 points (6-11 FG, 3-4 3PT, 1-1 FT), five assists
Solid showing at the combine for Paige, as he needed to show NBA teams that he was reliable as a perimeter shooter and distributor.
Shaky at times during his college career as a shooter, Paige was good in spot-up situations where he was able to hit catch-and-shoot opportunities when given space. Paige was also good at limiting turnovers and getting others involved on the offensive end and the North Carolina up-and-down style has him well-prepared for pushing the ball when given the chance.
The major red flag is Paige’s weight. The point guard just went through four years of college and still only weighs 164 pounds despite standing 6’1.75". That might seriously hinder Paige’s ability to play in the pros because he’s going to get pushed around by almost every other point guard in the league. Being a four-year guy with that kind of weight issue, it’s hard to see Paige getting picked in this draft, but he’ll have chances to prove himself if he can add strength and be consistent shooting the ball.
Malcolm Brogdon, Virginia
Game 1: 24 minutes, 17 points (6-8 FG, 2-3 3PT, 3-4 FT), six assists, four rebounds, three steals
Game 2: 27 minutes, nine points (3-10 FG, 0-5 3PT, 3-4 FT), three rebounds, three assists
The Virginia senior guard was solid at the combine, as he measured well with a 6’10.5" wingspan and also knocked down shots from the perimeter. Known as one of the better perimeter defenders in college basketball this past season, Brogdon showcased that ability to be a stopper at the combine as he made life difficult on opposing wings with his intense perimeter defense.
On the offensive end, Brogdon did a bit of everything and when his jumper is falling, it opens things up for Brogdon to put it on the floor and create a bit. With nine assists over two games, that was a nice added bonus for Brogdon, as he likely finds himself firmly in the second round with a shot to be a late first-round pick if the right team values his ability to play right away.
Isaiah Whitehead, Seton Hall
Game 1: 21 minutes, 13 points (6-8 FG, 1-2 3PT, 0-0 FT), five assists, three rebounds
Game 2: 20 minutes, three points (1-6 FG, 0-2 3PT, 1-2 FT), four assists, three rebounds
One of the most fascinating early-entry decisions will come from the Seton Hall sophomore guard, as Whitehead had a monster sophomore season. The combine was interesting for Whitehead, as he showed he was just a so-so athlete but he was better defensively than he has been in college.
Offensively, Whitehead is solid with step-backs and other ways to create his own shot, but he’s also very inconsistent with his shot-making and his ability to make others around him better. It’s likely that Whitehead would get picked in the second round of this draft based on his potential. There was a rumor coming out of Chicago that he had a late first round promise, but that would be a big surprise if true considering the way he performed.
Perry Ellis, Kansas
Game 1: 23 minutes, 11 points (3-10 FG, 1-3 3PT, 2-2 FT), five rebounds, two steals
Game 2: 18 minutes, 15 points (5-10 FG, 1-1 3PT, 4-5 FT), six rebounds
Although it might have felt like Perry Ellis was in college for more than four years, he left Kansas as a productive forward who impacted the college game in a number of ways.
At the pro level, athleticism and size are big question marks for Ellis, since he doesn’t play above the rim and his perimeter shooting is a question mark. Ellis went 2-for-4 from the NBA line, but it’s a small sample size from that mark.
It also remains to be seen if Ellis can be any kind of impact rebounder because he doesn’t have the size or athleticism to compete with the big boys on the glass. Despite being undersized, Ellis fits the mold of the small energy fours that have found success deep in team’s rotations over the past few seasons. Look for him to be drafted in the second-round.
Jake Layman, Maryland
Game 1: 20 minutes, nine points (3-6 FG, 1-4 3PT, 2-2 FT), six rebounds
Game 2: 21 minutes, 15 points (4-7 FG, 2-5 3PT, 5-5 FT)
Helping his cause at the combine was the Maryland senior forward, as Layman knocked down enough jumpers to make for an intriguing potential second-round pick.
At Maryland the last two seasons, Layman has played both the 4 and the 3, which should help him adjust to the NBA level if a team wants him to come off the bench as a versatile forward who can play multiple spots.
Layman’s perimeter shooting and assertiveness has been shaky at times in the past, but if he shoots the ball like he did in Chicago, he could find a spot in the second-round.