Draft profiles: Ricky Ledo, 6'6, 195 lbs, SG/PG, High School

Draft profiles: Ricky Ledo, 6'6, 195 lbs, SG/PG, High School

Ledo is one of the most intriguing talents in the draft.  Ledo has great handles, good, fluid athlete, shooter (albeit streaky), and has defensive potential.  The concern is can Ledo overcome maturity concerns after not playing in a year and not playing college basketball or overseas.

Athletic Ability

Athletically, Ledo possesses many great traits for a shooting guard.  In terms of speed, build, and ability, he is a solid athlete at the shooting guard position.  The issue is he is not in shape and might not use the best of his athletic ability. Working with a team/trainer for a year will likely increase his natural athletic ability.


After not playing college basketball, Ledo is probably going to struggle with the physicality of the NBA.  While he has nice height at 6’6, he does not have much muscle on his frame and is severely out of shape after coming into camp overweight for a NBA prospect.  If he can get in shape, Ledo possesses nice size to go along with solid athletic ability.

Basketball IQ and Will

There are many questions about Ledo and his will to win.  While Ledo is very skilled with great handles and a streaky shot, he also transferred school four times in high school and did not play any other form of team basketball.  While having the whole year off and knowing that he might be trying to play for money, he came into the camps woefully out of shape.  Combine this with his inability to gain eligibility for college, you have to wonder whether he's a hard worker.

As mentioned, Ledo is very skilled with good athletic ability.   However, Ledo seems to prefer flash over simple game correlation.  Does he have enough basketball IQ to match his skill-set?   Being out a year, how long will it take Ledo to adjust to the speed of the NBA?  Will he have enough versatility to provide productivity over flashy plays that can mask his deficiencies?


Ledo offers great offensive versatility at the next level.  Ledo probably has some of the best handles in this draft at the two guard or even point guard spot.  Once getting past defenders, He offers a variety of moves including floaters, finishing at the rack, or the mid-range pullup.  Ledo does show promise as a shooter, but lacks consistency which isn't unusual for his age.  When getting into the lane, he also shows some versatility to pass the ball out as well as score. 

While obviously offensively skilled, questions over his consistency and understanding of the game mar his status especially after not playing in college basketball which makes him among the least experienced players in the draft since the one and done rule came into play.

Defensively, it will take time for him to learn the NBA Game.  He's not known for toughness or defensive minded mentality and will take a couple years to build up an NBA physique. Will he be mature enough to add this to his game, his build, and develop the proper mentality? 


Overall, there are not many offensive talents in this draft.  He has a game similar to Jamal Crawford.  The questions are do all his red flags override his potential?  These are questions NBA Front Offices will have to do research.  While I think he could certainly make an impact in this league, many players with his type of red flags usually don’t make it through the responsibility of playing in the NBA/home lifestyle and such.

How does he fit the Bulls

While his skill-set fits the Bulls to a T and while the Bulls need more ball-handling creators on this team, I just don’t know if I see Ledo making an impact quickly for this type of team.  I also don’t think Coach Thibs will play him much due to questionable basketball habits. 

While I do think Ledo can make the league, I think it will take him a good 3-4 years to fully be ready in my opinion.  By time this happens, can the Bulls afford him for what he produces?  Will it be too late for the Bulls Title Run?  To me his red-flags from observation scare me from giving him guaranteed money as any pick in the draft!

My impressions

Overall, I think Ledo will likely move-up in this draft as he is one player later in the draft that provides significant upside with his offensive skill set and athletic potential.  However, Ledo has many big-time red-flags and I have serious concern if he can be mature enough to take advantage of his gifts.

For me, I hope he is already picked by time the Bulls pick so we can focus on a different player and pushing a good player down the draft.  If Ledo pans out, you have a very good player at the next level.  I just think it will take time and he will not be an immediate contributor.


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  • Thanks for the review. Somebody will take a chance on Ledo simply for talent's sake, but not the Bulls at No. 20. After James Johnson and Tyrus Thomas Gar/Pax's MO is they will not go for another attitude dilemma. I mean the kid couldn't even get in shape for the combine and a huge potential payday and a future career in the league? Warning lights, sirens, red flags, plagues, locusts.. etc.

    Personally, I'd either dump salary if I could for a slight trade up(Deng) and getting Shane Larkin or Kelly Olynyk. I realize fans will want more for Deng as an expiring, and maybe they can get it I don't know who though as they blew their big opportunity last summer or so it seems.

    Or if they can shed a little salary to keep the pick then Tim Hardaway is my top choice with Dieng second. Or maybe trade down for Erick Green, Isaiah Cannan, James Ennis, or yes.. Nate Wolters. Problem is the possible infusion of offense comes in the form of mostly undersized guards or rookies who will likely get little burn with Thibs. If the Bulls really feel like they are contenders with Derrick's return then you take Dieng if he's still there or Hardaway or trade the pick with a vet/salary for a young somewhat established/burgeoning talent??

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    I agree, No to Ledo. Wish him a dose of maturity, tho, so he can live up to his potential.

    I also agree to trading Deng. The Bulls mismanaged the salaries years ago, and it is coming back to bite them. Overpaid for Deng and Boozer and Hamilton and Gibson and Hinrich, and even for Rose (They did not have to give him the extra $3 million just because the NBA allowed it only for the MVP).

    Sure, they did not see the cap reduction coming, and that changed things, but they were still unwise with their money. They will be able to move Deng for a pick or two, but that will weaken the team for next season. It's the best of some lousy choices, IMO.

    There are some difference makers in this draft. Teams that find them will improve over the next 2-3 years. Dieng looks decent, but the guy with a real high potential is Erick Green. Why?
    1) He is under the radar, having played on a poor team.
    2) He is a lights out shooter, 25 ppg.
    3) He is getting better! Every year he has shown marked improvement. Two more years of that and he is a solid Allstar and the Bulls go to the Finals! Who else has that potential?
    4) Lots of assists considering his teammates were not good.
    5) Decent D, so Thibs will play him.

    Yeah, Green may not live up to all that, but even if not, he will be a strong PG off the bench, dependable, as good a value as most any other pick at #20. Trade Deng for an earlier pick and take Green with it. If he hits, the FO looks like geniuses.

    They will still need at least one more pick like Butler, or a comparable FA singing or trade, but that plus Mirotic should do it.

  • In reply to rustyw:

    Green will not be an all-star, but he could be a great offensive player off the bench!

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    not trading Deng unless at least mid-lottery if pure salary dump. Like your response. Like Green, Cannan, and Ennis!

  • In reply to kevinstates:

    GarPaxDorf cannot get a good draft pick for Deng AND dump Deng's massive salary. Last off-season proved salary will have to be taken back in trade if they want a good draft pick for Deng. Had Bulls done so last off-season (in a stronger draft) they would now be looking like basketball geniuses.

    And of course, GarPaxDorf don't look like basketball geniuses for a very good reason, because they aren't. Rein$dorf is however a financial wizard and that is why his moves are first and formost financial moves, not basketball moves.

  • In reply to Edward:

    Disagree - he has a 1 year expiring for an all-star type player! Some teams on verge of playoffs just want to make the playoffs.

  • In reply to kevinstates:

    According to your idea, a team well under the salary cap will give up its good draft pick for an expiring contract (1-year rental). That would be a Huge Risk as that team could easily lose Deng after 1 season and the team has no ability to match offers (no restrictions to free agency). Atlanta tried to trade Josh Smith as an unrestricted expiring and was unable to get anything for him.

    Only way I see your salary dump of Deng working is if Deng agreed to a reasonable contract extension as part of the trade. And I don't see Deng doing that, I see him exploring free agency. Also, if Deng was willing to accept a reasonable contract extension I see GarPaxDorf keeping him, not trading him.

    The time to trade Deng was when he had 2-years remaining on his contract, that would have provided some benefit to the new team. But even last season teams were requiring Bulls to take back equal salary (bad contract) to give up their draft pick. With the increased luxury tax penalties expiring contracts no longer have the lure they once had, and rookie contracts (draft picks) have increased in value.

    Expirings only have value to the new team as a way to shed/trade longer term contracts off their roster.

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    It appears that Dieng is the pick among Bulls fans, and he appears to be falling into the 20's in most mock drafts.

    I agree with the consensus(Dieng). While it might be nice to pick up another wing scorer, we need to add the best bigman talent available at our pick.

    It appears that we may have a choice among Dieng, Olynyk, Nogierra and Plumlee. Dieng and Nogierra are likely to be centers in the NBA, Olynyk and Plumlee look like they might be power forwards in the NBA.

    Looking forward to Kevin's analysis of these 4 prospects.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Would love Dieng. Already did a review for Plumlee!

  • Any way the Bulls shock the world and shake up their core roster with a draft day trade? Vegas odds 25 to 1.

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    By shaking up core, you mean trade Deng or Taj? This is the Bulls, you can never rule out dumping salary and then the Bulls PR trying to spinning it.

  • In reply to YouBlewwIt:

    We need to do something!

  • In reply to kevinstates:

    From a basketball and fans' perspective, YES.
    From a financial and owner's perspective with NBA-leading profits and attendance, NO.

    I'll give you three guesses as to which path Rein$dorf takes this off-season as he patiently waits for the coming HardCap in the 2017 CBA.

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    I hope so, but I hope they do so wisely or go for an aggressive offensive player!

  • Time for today's crazy trade idea,:

    Hornets get: Deng, RIP, Hinrich, #20 pick, $1MM
    Bulls get: E. Gordon, Jason Smith, L. Thomas and D. Miller, #6 pick.

    Why the Hornets say YES: Money, the Hornets save $25MM long term by getting out of the onerous Eric Gordon contract for essentially a draft pick swap, especially if they believe he is no longer the same player.

    Why the Hornets say NO: They aren't ready to give up on Eric Gordon so soon after signing him to an extension last summer, plus the compensation (cap relief, a lower draft pick) may not be enough to sweeten the deal.

    Why the Bulls do this trade: This is an opportunity to buy low on a guy who just 2 seasons ago averaged 22.5 PPG if he is recovered from his injuries, there is some tax relief and a lottery pick that can be used to make more deals (remember when the Celtics were able to trade Ray Allen for the #5 pick in the draft?). This move along with an amnesty of Boozer this year (keep dreaming) would actually put the Bulls at just $61,457,514 in committed salary for 12 players (includes the #6 and #50 picks), which would have the Bulls under the tax to avoid the repeater penalty!

    Why the Bulls do not do this trade: The risk, this is generally not a risk taking front office (although in this instance I wouldn't blame them), there is also the financial component (more LT money committed) and the 2014 plan that factor into play. There may also be better deals in play.

  • In reply to nolebron:

    Mentally, you are exploring ways to improve the team. Good approach. I hope FO is doing the same. Make the proposals in house and discuss them.

    True, most of these ideas will not fly for one reason or another, and I do not see the FO doing this one -- too risky, as you pointed out. But one of these times they will hit it big! Keep thinking!

    Actually, if the FO drafts really well, that may be all they need to do, plus being patient. It is hard for a hungry fan to be patient. We've been patient for years now.

  • In reply to rustyw:

    Do need to make some trades - just not dumb ones - we are right there!

  • In reply to kevinstates:

    Do you like Deng, Gibson, and a pick, maybe even the Charlotte pick, for Love and a couple of 2nd round picks?

    I believe this saves the Bulls some salary in 2013/2014, which might allow them to keep Belli. So, Noah, Boozer and Love in the front court and Rose and Belli starting Gs (Thibs would likely start Hinrich instead). Or Rose and Butler starting Gs. But Belli can defend and he seems to produce better as a starter.

    Or, start Noah, Love and Butler for better D, then Rose and Hinrich at Gs. Boozer and Belli off the bench. I think these guys contend even before Mirotic comes over. Especially if they get Erick Green and a decent backup C. If not, then they still need to hit another player or two like Butler in either this year's draft or next year's, but they have been doing that.

  • In reply to rustyw:

    Can't imagine any business or basketball reason Minny would deal Love. And I'm really trying to. Sign & trade for Nate Rob? They seem to like point guards a lot up there.

    Okay seriously, if Love is on the table then only Rose is untradable. And there's no way I'm going to try and burst the bubble on the dream that is Kevin Love in a Bulls uniform. It's just too sweet.

  • In reply to Redwhitenblack:

    Some fans do not agree with us, they think Love is overrated. He sure can score from anywhere, but the defense would suffer.

    A reason the T'wolves might do the trade -- Love can later walk for nothing. They would get three starters, Deng a borderline Allstar, Gibson, and the pick. Minnesota would improve.

    The Bulls would do the trade because they can't keep everyone anyway and they are up against the cap. Plus it should make Rose and his brother happy campers. Love and Belli beat Deng and Gibson.

    But the Bulls could not afford to give up, say, Noah, Butler, and the pick because Noah and Butler beat Deng and Gibson, and they cost less. As Kevin wrote, avoid the dumb trades.

  • In reply to nolebron:

    Don't want injury prone Gordon!

  • Ledo has a lot to offer what the Bulls need, a high risk/high reward player just not sure the Bulls would take this kind of risk again.

    I got two questions for you:
    Do you have any idea which guys the Bulls worked out already?
    Did they work out Mike Muscala and how do you like him for the Bulls?

  • In reply to rodman:

    Has some talent, but many red flags too!

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