Earl Clark - Draft Capsule

Earl Clark
Junior, Louisville
NBA Position: SF/PF
H: 6'9, W: 220 lbs, Age: 21

Clark looks the part of NBA prospect especially if you see a highlight reel.   Unlike most prospects, Clark appears to have missed the memo about lying about your height for your college profile as he looks like a legit 6'9.    He has great physical tools if he does in fact measure out well with the athleticism and height to play effectively as a PF.

Clark flashes ability in virtually every offensive skill set.   At times, he can shoot the jumper, take opponents off the dribble, post up, run the floor, and pass well.   Unfortunately, while he shows a high ceiling in all of these abilities due to his all around game, he's not at an NBA level in any of them immediately.

Assuming he measures out as a legit PF, he'll have decent ball handling for the position, otherwise he'd be deficient as a SF.   His court vision is probably his greatest offensive strength right now, but that's not a ringing endorsement for a big man.

His jumper is decent, and his form makes him likely to improve at the next level with practice, however, Clark tends to settle for jumpers frequently rather than looking for a better shot.   This is perhaps his greatest offensive weakness, as he seems content to play on the perimeter in a SF fashion rather than trying to get better shots on the interior.

This shows through most in his overall efficiency numbers.    Clark was a relatively low volume offensive player and still had poor offensive efficiency.    That doesn't bode well for his offense translating to the next level unless he's able to improve considerably.

Defensively he does a nice job on the pick and roll pushing guards out wide when they try to around him and able to stay with them as they attack the basket.   When he's beat to the basket, he frequently uses his athleticism to block opponents from behind.   Sometimes Clark seems a little lackadaisical on defense though as if relying on his athleticism to bail him out when beaten rather than using it to stay in front of his man in the first place.

It's worth noting that he didn't play a demanding role in Louisville's defense which had was a two-three zone with two guards aggressively attacking the perimeter ball handlers.  His job was mainly to wait back in the zone and clean up when things went wrong.  He did that effectively though rotating quickly in the zone when required to do so.   Much like his offense, Clark's defense may be a boom or bust thing at the next level where the potential is clearly there, but he's not necessarily executing it all yet.

Ranked 14th on DraftExpress's mock draft at the time of this writing, he strikes me as someone who could slip.  If he measures out as a PF then he'll have a high ceiling, as high as anyone in the draft.   Despite his all-star caliber PF upside, it's unlikely he'll reach it and his bust potential is just as high.   I've heard poor things about his intangibles and coachability which is a concern as well.   It'd be hard to pass his ceiling if he's there at 16, but I think he's an all or nothing type prospect.   He doesn't have one particular strength he could lean on as a role player.

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