3 - Isaiah Canaan

6-0, 190 Point Guard
Murray St. Senior
05/02/91 (30.6 yrs)
Biloxi, MS
High School
Team Site Profile
Jump Shot
NBA Ready
Ball Handling

NBA Comparison: Vinnie Johnson/Ty Lawson

Strengths: Canaan is a strong, aggressive scoring point guard who put up big numbers in college … He’s a deadly outside shooter who shot 42% on 3-pointers during his college career … He’s one of the best shooters off the dribble in this draft class, thanks to his quick release … Canaan is also very proficient on the catch-and-shoot, which will help him in the NBA when he isn’t handling the ball as often as he did in college … A real tank of a point guard, especially at his height, Canaan loves to get in the lane and take contact … Drew a high rate of fouls in college (6 FTA per game) and shot 82% from the line last season … A pesky perimeter defender, Canaan is able to harass opposing point guards into losing their handle on the ball, leading to an easy break the other way … Attacks the basket with assertiveness, combining with his bulk to make him very difficult to slow down … Good wingspan (6’4.5") will help him compensate for his lack of height … Good leaping ability (40.5" max vert) … Very smooth, quick shooting form … Good at using screens to drive or get an open shot, making him a solid pick-and-roll player overall … Showed the ability to carry a heavy offensive load for his team, as he accounted for nearly a third of Murray State’s offensive possessions … Is effective on the one-handed floater in the lane … Appears to be a very confident and poised player out there …

Weaknesses: Will be limited by his lack of height, particularly when finishing and defending on the perimeter … Had a very suspect assist-to-turnover ratio in college … His lack of good competition downplays his impressive numbers … Can be foul-prone and his aggressiveness sometimes causes him to commit unnecessary charges … After dominating the Murray State offense last season, he may have trouble transitioning smoothly to a lesser role when he is on the court in the NBA … Canaan is much more of a scoring point guard than a distributing point guard, and his assist numbers per 40 minutes were less than impressive (4.3 assists per 40 minutes adjusted) … Simply lacks NBA-caliber court vision at this stage in his career and has a bit of a shoot-first mentality … Needs to eliminate turnovers (3.2 per game) and not try to do so much with the ball at the next level, when his teammates will be much more talented …

Notes: Two-time Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year (shared the award last season) … First made the national spotlight after hitting a stunning shot from his knees from nearly half-court as the shot clock expired …

Overall: Isaiah Canaan is a player that will provide a team with high energy and instant offense off the bench with his combination of strength and shooting ability. His size and point guard skills may drop him into the second round, but he has a good deal to offer an NBA club…

Jacob Stallard 6/14/13

Strengths: Canaan is a strong, sturdy point guard … Though slightly undersized, he gives the impression you’d need a running start to knock him over … Stays low to the ground with his dribble… He’s quick with the ball and possesses a bounce to his step that’s capable of breaking down the defense … Runs a lot of pick and rolls at Murray State, an important skill to learn in preparation for the next level … Phenomenal shooter at 48% from downtown on over 6.5 attempts per game… Makes defenders pay for going under screens thanks to NBA range shooting off the dribble… Shows the athleticism to finish at the rim with acrobatic balance … Plays with a sense of confidence, passion, intensity and poise

Weaknesses: At 6’0, he lacks vertical explosiveness, which will make it much harder to finish at the next level… Only averaging 3.8 assists/game in 33 minutes, a potential red-flag for an undersized point guard who leads his team in scoring … Questions surround his ability to be a pass-first point guard… Playing in the OVC, he rarely has the opportunity to go head to head against elite competition, which will always factor in to a scout’s evaluation … Defensively the concerns are fair, as he lacks substantial length, lateral quickness and size in general…

Overall: Canaan is averaging 19 points, and has his Racers one of three teams in the nation with only 1 loss… He has the qualities to become a March Madness phenom, which would obviously give his stock a boost… While he has question marks regarding his size, potential role and transition, he excels in too many areas to count him out… Canaan could go anywhere from the first pick in the second round to the last, but has first round upside if everything checks out and the adjustment process runs smoothly …

Notes: Measured 6’1 (in shoes) 199 lbs, with a 6’4 wingspan at the 2012 Deron Williams Skills Academy

Jonathan Wasserman 3/2/12

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