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Prospect of the Day - Jrue Holiday

Jrue Holiday
Freshman, UCLA
NBA Position: PG/SG
H: 6'3, W: 185 lbs, Age: 18 (almost 19)

Jrue Holiday's prospects at the next level are difficult to estimate.   First, he's still only 18 at the time of this writing which means a fair bit of projecting about his future development curve comes into play.   Next, he played in possibly the worst possible system he could have at UCLA.   The pace was slow, so he had fewer possessions, and finally he had to play out of position because of Darren Collison's role on the team.
Holiday is a good ball handler with either hand.  He's probably
not as dynamic as Flynn or Teague in this regard as his overall speed
is lower, so he's not performing the same moves as fast.   Still, ball
handling won't be an issue for him at the next level.   He creates
space with hesitation moves and changes of speed more so than blowing
by guys off the dribble leading me to believe he doesn't have
exceptional athleticism.

He didn't get to spend enough time
playing PG to come to a fair conclusion about his court vision, but the
signs were good in the chances he did have.   He also used a fair
amount of isolation plays and was successful driving to the basket in
isolation while still struggling with the pull up jumper.    He may
struggle to drive as successfully at the next level as he rarely blew
by people at this level.

One great thing about Holiday, and
surprising, is that he was one of the better defensive guards I've
looked at tot his point, behind only Henderson.     He had good
fundamentals, didn't give up blow bys frequently, and always contested
shots.   He put out great effort on this end of the floor, which seems
rare for many college prospects.  UCLA didn't run a constant zone like
so many college teams, so you could actually get a very good feel for
how well he could defend in a man defense scheme as well.

Holiday's
shooting touch was definitely a weakness at this point, and he clearly
felt uncomfortable playing off the ball so much, as he was a PG in
HS.    His role in the UCLA offense was also very small for a guy
projected by some as a lottery pick.     When watching his entire body
of work, he displays all the potential skills, but not enough volume or
consistency to feel he's a sure thing type prospect.

You're
buying Holiday on potential, and as a PG, for those two reasons he
seems like a poor fit for the Bulls organization.   He needs to add
strength, like every player his age, and improve his shot considerably
to be successful at the next level.   My greatest concern with Holiday
is his moderate athleticism.   He's not super quick, and I question
whether he'll beat NBA PGs off the dribble, but skill wise he's at a
high level for his age.

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