2 - Kobe Bufkin

6-5, 185 Shooting Guard
Michigan Sophomore
Birthday
09/21/03 (20.4 yrs)
Hometown
Grand Rapids, MI
High School
Grand Rapids Christian
Team Site Profile
Athleticism
8
Size
7
Defense
8
Strength
7
Quickness
8
Leadership
8
Jump Shot
8
NBA Ready
6
Ball Handling
8
Potential
8
Passing
8
Intangibles
8
92 Overall:

NBA Comparison: Jordan Poole

Strengths: Bufkin is a lean 6’4 190 southpaw SG prospect who has smooth athletic ability and quickness as well as the frame to add mass without losing athleticism … Currently enjoying a bit of a breakthrough year as a Soph. after playing very limited minutes in his frosh season; has shown promise in his scoring from all over the court (nearly 14 ppg on 48 FG%) and significant improvement in his jump shooting (22 3FG% in ‘21-22, compared to around 35% on 3.6 3FGA this season) particularly down the stretch of Michigan’s Big 10 conference slate … Plays at his own pace, has some craftiness to his game and creates driving lanes for himself well … Rangy, downhill slasher who makes good use of ball-fakes in the lane and knows how to get defenders to lunge and take the bait to get space for his shots … Has good touch to convert around the rim and in the short corners with his floater (56 FG% inside the arc this season)…Shows signs of being able to hit 3-point shots off the dribble, using hand-offs and when running to open spots along the perimeter, and has started to prove capable of hitting enough shots from NBA range to keep defenders honest when they dive screens … Also has been solid off 1-2 bounce pull-ups from mid-range when chased off the line…Pretty solid handle and burst, with nice potential creating in the pick and roll game…Unselfish player who may get a long look at minutes as a lead guard in the future from some coaches after showing some decent ability as a passer this year (2.8 apg) despite only sporadically getting a chance to initiate the offense … Competes hard on defense and has held up well when asked to deny dribble penetration when isolated or fighting through screens … Has quick hands and times when to jump in passing lanes to get deflections well, while also making effort to contest shots near him on the perimeter (1.3 spg & 21 blocks in regular season play) … Should be able to defend either guard spot at the NBA level depending on the matchup … Is able to contribute in a variety of ways on both ends of the court … Decent rebounding skills for a guard (4.3 rpg) … Has been pretty good from the charity stripe when he gets there (nearly 84 FT% this season, career 82%) … A smart player whose accelerated development in one season points to a hard worker that has the potential to keep growing and is seemingly a safe bet to polish his areas of improvement … Young for a 2nd year player; would just be turning 20 at the start of training camp as a rookie this year … Listed at 6’4, but could be 6’5 in shoes and appears to have a 6’8 to 6’9 wingspan …

Weaknesses: Though he’s improved as a shooter he still is somewhat inconsistent with it the further out his shoots … Will have to prove his long range shooting improvement is sustainable … Could do a better job with his shot selection at times; has possessions when he dribbles the ball too much or forces unnecessary contested jumpers … Not a particularly dynamic athlete or impressive physical presence and may find it more difficult to convert at the rim consistently against NBA frontcourt players like he has at Michigan this season, despite his length and savvy ability creating angles to finish … Sometimes overzealous defensively with his gambles for steals and gets himself out of position … Tendency to reach when looking to create turnovers also comes with unnecessarily foul totals, especially for a guard (2.4 fpg, fouled out of 4 games as a Soph.) … Has moments when his inexperience shows on both ends of the court, and isn’t quite the sum of his parts as a prospect yet …

Overall: Bufkin came to Michigan as an in-state player who top 50 recruit in the 2021 HS class, but had to wait his turn behind a group of upperclassmen and highly touted Caleb Houston (averaged 3 ppg and 10 mpg) … This season he took advantage of the extended minutes available from the losses in the backcourt; more than quadrupling his scoring output, seeing upward trajectory in efficiency and overall production across the board, and going from a 2023 Draft afterthought to an intriguing 2-way prospect that has played his way into 1st round discussion as the season has progressed…He has combo guard potential, the makings of a nice 3 level scoring skill set, solid defensive effort and shows the type of basketball IQ that suggests he will continue to grow as a player as he earns more trust from whatever coaching staff he goes to … The end of Michigan’s season, as they currently fight for an at-large NCAA tourney bid during championship week, and his performance in pre-draft workouts will speak volumes about whether he gets a first round grade for the 2023 NBA Draft class that would be hard to pass up or if he decides to come back for his Jr. season … He may not come into the league ready to play from Day 1, as he has some polish to add to his game, mass to add to his frame, and consistency to add to his jumper, but he is definitely someone teams will keep a close eye on as a developmental prospect over the coming months and beyond …

Notes: Measured 6′ 4.25” barefoot, 8′ 6.50” standing reach, 186.8 lbs and a 6′ 7.75” wingspan and a 29 inch standing vertical and a 36′ inch max vertical at the 2023 NBA Draft Combine …

Jorrye Nixon 3/15/23

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