Jun 24, 2013
NBA Comparison: Jeremy Evans
Strengths: Athletically gifted combo forward with octopus-like length. Measured at 7’1.5 wingspan and 9’0 standing reach. The definition of "easy hops", seemingly levitates and walks on air. Explosive leaper off two feet finishing well above the rim. Dunk tally is impressive. Off-ball movement is his staple for offensive productivity (10.4 PPG)- frequent lob target on back cuts as well as in transition. Aiken averages 1.7 PPP off the cutting action and 1.37 PPP in the transition game. Runs well full 94 feet, chews up territory with long strides. Converts offensive rebounds into points (1.5 ORPG). Competent mid-range stroke in limited attempts. Unblockable high release. Much improved free throw accuracy at 79%. Uncommon weakside shot blocker (3.2 BPG for career) possessing a package of exquisite timing, freakish length and quick ups. Catches shots at peak height with both hands — for all intents and purposes look like goaltending, but it’s not — he’s just born to swat shots. Always lurking as a secondary defender. Moves comfortably laterally, no concern guarding small forward’s on the perimeter. Reportedly a soft-spoken, shy and gentle kid. Overcame Burkitt’s lymphoma as a 7-year old.
Weaknesses: Aiken failed to substantially enhance his frail frame during a three-year collegiate stay. He arrived at 190 and leaves at 199. Struggles against physical treatment. Playing the 4 spot below 200 lbs. is not feasible. Liable to be bodied up and pushed up around by stronger 3’s. Displayed little statistical improvement from sophomore to junior seasons, with regression in efficiency and shot blocking. While his jumpshot, with work, can develop into a useful tool, his over-reliance on the trey has been startling: 2.7 of 7.5 FGA came from behind the arc (25% makes). 35% of St. Joe’s possessions saw Aiken as a spot up target, resulting in .75 PPP and 37.5% adjusted FG. A non-factor in isolation (8 possessions), the pick and roll (29 poss) or in the post (10 poss). Poor ball handling= non-existent face up game. Lacks a calling card strength offensively outside of dunking the ball. Does he have the competitive spirit to realize his physical potential and build up his weak body? On-court demeanor is passive with a capital P. Reluctant to engage in the fray underneath the backboards (5.6 RPG). Needs to break free from gentle persona and find the fire to punish opponents.
Adam Ganeles 6/11/13
Strengths: Athletic forward who displays untapped potential … An unfinished product with intriging combination of length, fluidity and bounce … An excellent shot blocker (ranked 3rd in the nation last year at 3.5 bpg) with timing and quick leaping ability … Shows some solid offensive potential with the ability to face the basket and knock down mid-range shots, and even the occaisional 3 pointer (shot 17-58 3 pointers as a freshman – 29%) … While still a work in progress offensively, his potential to develop his offensive skills is intriguing … Quick, explosive leaper. Fluid athlete who excels running the floor and finishes above the rim … Shows decent touch on his shot and should be able to develop much better consistency with practice and confidence … 65% free throw shooting as a freshman should improve … Shows solid touch around the basket … Appears to have a wingspan in the neighborhood of 7’2 … Plays with a solid motor.
Weaknesses: Still rail thin (192 lbs) and it remains to be seen if he can add significant weight to his frame … Needs to gain strength to handle post play and develop the ability to finish with contact … Additional strength will allow him to grab more rebounds and play more aggresively around the basket … Needs to develop back to the basket post skills … Older for a sophomore as he will turn 22 within the next draft year (2012): making him nearly 2 years older than his draft class and further raising questions about his body development …
Notes: Productive freshman year averaging 7.4 ppg … Blocked 117 shots as a freshman setting a St Joe’s freshman record … Won Player of the Year honors in his home state of Pennsylvania leading his Plymouth-Whitemarsh HS team to a State Championship averaging 16.9 points, 10.0 rebounds and 6.5 blocked shots …
Aran Smith 10/16/11