Every year, there seems to be two or three second round picks that seem to end up becoming solid players in the NBA for a long time. This year, this draft is one of the deepest drafts in terms of solid players that provide a unique skills that should translate for a few years. Below are a few players that I feel will do well and will be steals in the second round. Players that I have already writing up profiles on that could slip into the second round are Stanley Robinson, Devin Ebanks, Terrico White, Jordan Crawford, and Willie Warren.
I also did not mention Gani Lawal, Jarvis Varnado, and Ben Uzoh, but they should at least be players drafted based on defense. There are few International players such as Ryan Richards, Thomas Heurtel, and Tibor Pleiss that caught my attention, but I do not have enough material to fairly judge them.
It is worth mentioning that I am not high on players such as Lance Stephenson, Armon Johnson, and Charles Garcia due to what seems to be low IQ and selfish players.
Darrington Hobson - (New Mexico) (6'7, 205 lbs., SF) -
will be drafted at the end of the first round, but he will be a steal if
not taken in middle of the first. Hobson is a jack-of-all trades,
master of none, but very good at the small forward position.
Hobson is very versatile as he can handle the ball, a streaky, but good
shooter, and a high IQ. Even though he has average athleticism, he is
able to use either hand and set up other teammates. He is a solid catch-and-shooter from the three point range. With his solid
handles and high IQ, he would be great at the pick-and-roll and using
his mid-range game, or passing the ball out to other players. As
evidenced, he is a good passer by averaging 4 assists a game at the
However, he is also limited in that despite his
size, he is not great at finishing at the rack, so improving his
mid-range game and out is pivotal. He will have to learn to take
better angles when using floaters and such since his speed is average.
Hobson, while versatile will need to learn to play without the ball, but I see him able to make that transition due to his high IQ
and catch-and-shoot ability.
Defensively, Hobson should
strictly guard small forwards as he does not have the quickness to guard
shooting guards. He does have a solid wingspan and is at least an
average athlete, by NBA standards. One strength worth highlighting was
that he averaged 9 rebounds a game in college.
should be in the league for a long time due to his versatility and high
IQ at the small forward position. I do not expect him to be a star,
but a guy that can average around 12 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists a
game and making an offense flow smoothly.
Manny Harris (Michigan) -
is a unique shooting guard at 6'6 with long arms, long stride, and with great slashing ability. At Michigan, he was the go-to-guy and was able to score
mainly by slashing to the basket and scoring off of floaters, lay-ups,
and bank shots. While not sporting a good outside shot, he can get hot
from deep and go on a rampage.
However, right now, he is
fairly weak at 185 lbs. He
struggles against more physical competition and it is going to take
time for him to adjust to NBA defenses. He does have great ability to
create with either hand and is savvy enough to get to the line. Also
worth mentioning is that he did average 4 assists per game last year on
a bad Michigan team.
Defensively, he uses his long strides and
wing span to get nearly 2 steals a game. Otherwise, he showed lack of
focus at times and could be scored on easily. He does have solid
lateral quickness and length if taught properly however.
Harris was on a bad Michigan team last year and was their leading
scorer. It is also worth noting that he was on a team that was not
suited for his strengths as a slasher. I can see Harris making it in
the NBA in the right situation if he can develop a consistent three
point shot and develop more muscle to his frame. The best outlook for
Harris is a poor man's John Salmons. He will need to learn to play
without the ball, but he has many characteristics to play in the NBA
Craig Brackins (Iowa State) -
A first round pick
last year, but his stats show a down this year. Played on a bad Iowa
State team this year with few other options; common theme here. At
6'10 and 230 lbs, Brackins showed great skills offensively along
with good athleticism.
Offensively, Brackins in the NBA, should
be able to spread a defense by shooting open jumpers. Right now, he is
not strong enough to set screens consistently, so he will need to be
paired up with a good lead guard that can create holes. If he has a
smaller defender on him, Brackins can use his post up game for
turn-around jumpers or jump hooks.
Defensively, Brackins has
good athletic ability and a long wingspan to get steals, is solid at
blocking shots, and is able to use his athleticism to get rebounds.
However, he is not strong enough to guard low-post players right now.
Brackins could become a great role player at the next level if he can
add some weight to his frame and improve on his consistency on both
ends. If he is not able to improve on either, he will not play in the
league. If he can improve on both, he can be a poor man's Antawn
Jamison in style, but not in production. A good realistic option at
max is a 10 points and 4 rebounds kind of guy in 20 minutes a game.
Alexey Shved (Russia) 6'5, 175 lbs., PG/SG -
Very versatile guard that has a flair for the dramatic. He has great handles with either hand along with great court vision.
Shved uses his height along with great court vision to find others.
Right now, he does not have the speed or strength to beat opposing
players off the dribble. Also, he has a somewhat inconsistent jump
shot, but there is at least one present.
Defensively, he is long
and solid athletically, so he should be able to guard the point guard
and shooting guard. He has solid feet laterally and has long arms and plays with
Overall, Shved should be a good pick in the
second round with hopes of playing overseas for two more years
developing his game and his body.
Mikhail Torrance (Alabama) 6'5, PG, 205 lbs. -
Torrance is a great steal in the second round due to his ability to play the point guard and shooting guard position at 6'5. Torrance has a great step and quickness and thrives in getting to the rack and finishing or dishing it out to an open teammate. Interestingly, Torrance is right-handed, but drives with his left hand dominantly.
However, offensively, he still needs to learn to finish better when in the lane. If he can continue to get stronger along with working on floaters, he can at least be a good backup in this league. Torrance will have to adjust also in not having the ball in his hands much and learning to shoot off the pass. While not a great shooter, he showed glimpses in that he should at least be respected from range.
Defensively, he has great length, and quickness and can guard the one or two spot. He is able to get into the passing lanes if guarding the one and has good lateral quickness to chase and stay with the two.
Right now, Torrance should be a solid player at the next level that reminds me of a Roger Mason Jr. type player. Any player that makes a team and provides a role of any sort is a steal at this juncture and he should provide that. While playing at Alabama, he did not have any other options on his team, so it should be expected that he would not flourish as that is not his game.
Trevor Booker (Clemson) - 6'8, 235 lbs., PF -
Booker is a great pick for the next round based solely on rebounding and pure hustle. While undersized at 6'8, he is everywhere on the court; especially defensively. He offers great size in that he will be able to guard a low post PF with his thickness and body. If he is guarding a face-up 4, he has great quickness to hedge screens and guard the shooter.
Offensively, he is a mixed bag. He will never be able to be a guy you can dump the ball to and go ask to get a bucket. However, he shows the ability to face-up and take another power forward to the rack and score. Occasionally, he shows a jumper and also sometimes shows a left-hand jump hook if posting up. Booker does not show enough consistently down low, so he will need to develop a mid-range jumper to be a threat.
Overall, he is a great pick as a late first-round pick/early second based on his size and ability to be everywhere at his size. He should be play in the NBA for a long time and right now, he reminds me of a left-handed Paul Millsap, but does not quite have a consistent jumper outside.
Jerome Jordan (Tulsa), 7'1, 245 lbs., C -
A raw, but unique center with solid athletic ability and great size. Jordan is somewhat raw in that he has only played for a few years and showed remarkable improvement each year at Tulsa.
Offensively, while raw, Jordan showed good improvement on the pick-and-roll and pick-and-pop. While still raw, he did show somewhat of a 15 foot jumper. Also, in the post, while inconsistent, did show good drop step moves and jump hooks with either hand.
Defensively, his size alone will clog up the lane. While he might struggle with built low-post players right now, his length will cause problems for players trying to shoot over him. He also is solid at blocking out and getting rebounds. He will struggle guarding pick-and-rolls however as he is not extremely fleet at foot.
Overall, you can never have enough size. While there are questions about his laid-back personality, he does seem to improve every year along with good work ethic. I don't expect him to ever be an all-star type player, but a player that can give you solid bench play in a couple of years.
Jerome Randle (California) 5'10, PG, 170 lbs.
Undersized shooting guard that is bolting quick, strong, and has a great shot. Overall, even though undersized, he is extremely skilled and has the will to want it more than anyone else.
Offensively, Randle is best by using his quickness and straight-line speed to get to a spot and create for others, or by finding and opening and shooting his smooth jumper. Randle also knows how to shift gears, and use floaters that are hard to block even at his height.
Defensively, Randle is going to struggle as he will be posted up. However, he is very fast and will be up in the opposing point guard's grill the whole time. He will also be good at staying in front of guards that penetrate well.
Right now, despite being undersized, Randle reminds me of Tyronn Lue with a good outside jumper. He will be a late second round pick and should be in the league for a while despite his shortcomings.