Ed Davis (North Carolina)
6'10, 230 lbs., PF
A gifted athlete with a long wing span, Davis came to North Carolina as a heralded freshman and learned as playing the backup behind Tyler Hansbrough and Deon Thompson during the championship year. Even though injured for most of this year, Davis showed flashes of brilliance in spurts.
Davis remains raw offensively, a work-in-progress. He scores most of his points in transition, on lobs, and off of offensive rebounds. Though not a spectacular passer, he plays unselfishly and feeds teammates. When strong enough, he uses a jump hook, or a short jumper off the glass.
However, Davis lacks a jumper that can keep defenses honest. Add that to the fact that he typically lacks the strength to post up most of his defenders and his limitations become obvious. He possesses the physical attributes in terms of wingspan and athleticism, but needs to add strength or a jumper to become an offensive threat in the NBA.
Davis should shine defensively. He plays with excellent lateral quickness which should allow him to defend the pick and roll well, hedging picks and still getting back to his man. He also plays great help defense, blocking shots. He plays with excellent defensive fundamentals and cleans up the glass well on both ends of the court. He lacks the strength to play great defense in the post, but there are few post up PFs in the NBA these days.
How does his game translate to the NBA?
Currently, it would have been beneficial for Ed to return back to UNC and hone his skills a little more. While showing promise, potential, and being regarded as a good team player, he is very raw offensively and underdeveloped physically. With that being said, Davis is projected to go anywhere from mid-lottery to mid first round. Whomever drafts him will need to be patient until he adds more weight.
One thing that gives me glimpses of hope is that he works hard and is highly regarded as a teammate. I think with added weight, the sky is the limit due to his athletic ability and determination. Also, it is shown that he got up to nearly 230 during the draft measurements; a good sign that he can add weight. Overall, I expect Davis to be a good defensive player with potential to be a solid offensive player down the road. I do not expect him to be an all-star, but a solid player for years to come.