Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thoughts on four first round point guards

A couple of random thoughts on the NBA draft:
Haven’t seen enough of Knicks No. 1 pick, Iman Shumpert of Georgia Tech, to give a thumbs up or down on the pick, but for a guy who is supposed to be a point guard, his assist/turnover ratio is stunningly poor.
As a junior last year, he averaged 3.5 assists to 2.3 turnovers, which is dreadful. If you’re not at close to 2-to-1, or better, it’s a red flag. And Shumpert wasn’t even close to that. For his career, he averaged 1.36 assists to every turnover; worse last year (1.33-1).
From the sound of it, it looks like the Knicks took a guy who’s more of an athlete than basketball player. That almost never works.

Draft analysts who should know better kept saying that Kemba Walker and Jimmer Fredette aren’t really point guards and Brandon Knight is.
Switch all of that around.
Walker has been a point guard from the moment he stepped on the UConn campus, and just because he was asked to pick up the scoring alongside a bunch of freshmen doesn’t mean he was anything less than a pure point guard. He’d be the last guy I’d call a shoot-first point guard. The guy couldn’t even shoot his first two years.
Even last year, when he carried much of the scoring load, his assist/turnover ratio was 2-to-1.
Fredette is a shoot-first point guard, but every time I watched him he was able to get into the paint against guys who are supposedly too quick for him. His assist/turnover ratio wasn’t ideal, (1.47-1), but so many of his turnovers came because of his need to force things scoring-wise.
Knight’s game picked up at Kentucky when he did what he does best – create off the dribble for his own shot. He wasn’t getting the ball back from his teammates at Kentucky anyway when he tried to be a distributor the first half of the year, so he figured, what the heck.


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