Prospect Watch: Big Dance Edition

I'm pretty convinced that the Rockets will have several international players on their board during the draft this year, but since It's the Tournament time, and I've been watch these games. I thought I look at some guy we might be interested in. this regardless of draft position .

Rocket's obvious need is at the the center position, and that's one thing we cannot deny. Unfortunately, the dance isnt exactly teeming with 7ft monster like Enes Kanter, so we will make due with whoever else is out there. The other position of "need" I think is small forward. Now before T-Will fans rise up and try to kill me, this has nothing to with hating on T-will. The truth this is a good draft for forwards, and while Chase and T-will are both talented. neither are people I can confidently say match up better against good teams(dont argue with me on this until one of them has proven to be a consistent player). It does not hurt to have another good talent for competition, and if he can possibly become a star all the better.

As long as we are talking drafting talent over need, I think the following 2 position will also receive consideration if we really saw good value that cant be passed up: Power Forward(What!?), and Point Guard(double What!?). Allow me to say that I love what we have at both positions, but the fact is this draft is also full of good looking power forwards and point guards that I would not be surprised to see us pick up one of them.

I thinks SG is a slim possibility, but it will be a very specific situation when the right guy appear at the right time, because i believe trading one of our SGs is the best chance we have to get a good center next year, but it's not necessary a priority next year.


Keith Benson

A name I often hear as possible second round gold prospect.  Stand at 6-11 at about 225 pounds(Expect him to gain some more prepping for the draft) and a terrific wingspan of 7-4, He's got all the NBA tool to be an excellent center in the league. Why is he a second round prospect? If you watch the Texas game, you can easily see why. Young Tristan Thompson easily outplayed him, regularly out-hustle the big man on the glass while scoring 17 points. The upside is, Benson still was able to post an excellent line against a pretty good Texas defense. He is quite lethargic as a player, and that's a big problem. The fact that he went from a unknown low recruit to a legit NBA prospect in 3 years, means he is coachable and can be developed. However, over the years I found that attitude above anything else is often the hardest thing to adjust and improve in the NBA. He has touch and shot-blocking that reminds me of Greg Monroe and a 7 ft player at the second round with tools like his will be worth the shot.

Unfortunately he is literally one of the only true center prospects in the dance this year, the other guys is JaJuan Johnson, also a second round prospect. I will update if I see more.


Small Forwards

A much more prolific crop of players this year with guys like Harrison Barnes, Terrence Jones topping the charts, but I'm only talking about people that I think we might be interested.

Christ Singleton

I think by far the best defensive SF in this draft, possibly the best defensive player. FSU plays a brilliant defensive scheme this year, and all their players are coached to play with immense defensive intensity, and Singleton is the linchpin. 6-9 long armed small forward with great lateral quickness, His hands are so active that he create a ton of deflections for FSU. unfortunately didnt play much in his first game vs TXAM since he just came back from his broken foot, and the stats reflect very little of what he's done on the court. He's an very active defensive guy and knock down a big 3 in the end. You can see that he's not a great offensive guy since before the big shot he was 1 for 5 and air-balled the attempt before the big shot, and also not much of a ball handler. Somewhat similar to Ariza, but seems to have great intensity, and possibly much smarter since FSU plays a very strong defensive scheme, man on man with switches and help, and versus A&M switched to a zone, neither seems to affect any player in knowing where to go. He's an off-ball player, but he might be the defensive player to replace Battier

Terrence Jones

One of the more impressive prospects this year, certain lottery pick with his combination of skill and size. Terrence Jones is one of the most complete player in this draft, 6-8 NBA ready body , consistent jumper, able rebounder and a excellent passer. To complement it alll, a fundamentally sound defensive players as well. It not hard to see the Lamar Odom comparisons, but perhaps a bit too similar. Through 2 tournament games, Knight has been the star of the show with Jones in spectacular supporting role, much like Lamar Odom, star talent, role player mentality. It's not the worse thing in the world, but it's what keeps him from being an unstoppable force. However, this kid fills up the stat chart for Kentucky and we all know about the ol' Cal seal of approval on his athleticism. I see him as an immediate starter material if he retains his shot and smarts, some what like Rudy Gay in the sense that he doesnt appear all that impressive in the college game, but his talents and skills are there and should not be a problem translate into NBA.

Jordan Hamilton

Hamilton is a more interesting prospect, which is a nicer way of saying lower first round pick. He has some well known flaws, which are mostly defensive and mental in nature. He is long and deceptively powerful, and got a very diverse offensive game. He carved up the Okaland defense like a turkey dinner. Dead eye 3 point shooter and excellent at moving off the ball makes him a real dangerous scoring threat, actually much of his game may be similar with Kevin Martin. This is just my old long horn bias though, his success in the league is contingent on him being at least passable on defense.

Power Forward

Tristan Thompson

Well, he just declare to return to Texas for his sophomore year, but I am gonna talk about him anyways. This is no Longhorn bias, Thompson is a unique talent. Measure in at 6-8.5 with shoes on, he's a bit undersized for NBA power forward, but his 7-2 wingspan more than make up for the height. He's 20 year's old, so there is a slight chance that he can still gain an inch, but he probably wont be the ideal 6-10. He may still add more muscle, but at 240, the kid's got a solid frame to handle size. Showed no fear against the physically imposing Keith Benson. Rick Barnes is a player's coach, so at times his players appears out of sync or not playing at full strength. It's because Rick Barnes doesnt get on player's back, he wants the players to "get it" through experience. Tristan Thompson gets it, he's still lacking in experience, but the parts of the game he gets, he put forth full effort. I am talking about his defense. Texas tighten their defense this year, and the activity of Thompson has much to do with it. He's active in the post with excellent lateral speed and awareness, and with his long arms he can block shots with ease. It will be very interesting to see him match up with Derrick Williams if he can defend a lottery pick well. Offensively, He's more a garbageman at this point, but because he can rebound quite well, it doesnt hinder the team. Great hands and knows how to finish around the rim.

I see Thompson as a very good complement next to Patrick Patterson  in a small ball double power forward style of line up, while undersized he is an immense shot blocking threat and rebounder that complement Patterson's mid-range game very well.

Kenneth Faried

While most of the other guys I can pin down their draft position, Kenneth Faried from Moorhead State still is a big mystery to me. He's undersized raw senior, played for a mid major school, he played a position that he wont play in the NBA and he played that position for a while, all of which indicates that he's a possible second round project. On the other hand. He is an active elite level athlete that leads the nation in rebounding, can dunk with the best of them and block the sun out of the sky. Watch his game winning block to confirm this. His rebounding comes from activity, and so does his block, but outside of that his fundamentals arent all there yet. I like players with high motors and no one has higher motors than this guy on court. I much rather having a player that needs to improve on skill but not effort than a player that needs to improve on effort but not skill. From what I saw , Faried still plays mostly on instinct, but he's down and gritty, and just a natural rebounder. If he can make a Milsap like leap, he can be a very good last first early second grab.

JaJuan Johnson

The last Boilmaker we got was so impressive, we might take another one. Johnson is 6-10 215 possible forward center, but he is a lanky length. The reason he is listed here is because his range goes beyond the college 3 point line. As far as the post game goes, he's not the most impressive weapon, but the few moves he's got, he is very consistent with it. His frame is just too skinny for him to be an effective post and rebounder, but he does have long arms and awareness that he utilizes for weak side blocks. While he's got big hands to catch the ball, he does not seems  to be able to handle the ball proficiently to drive. He's a likely second rounder, but has potential if he's able to gain weight and increase a lower  body strength, but strength seems to be the biggest limiting factor of his game, skill and knowledge wise he seems polished. He and Moore essentially carried the teams scoring this year, sor leadership is not a problem with the guy.

No cursing in title. No pirated material, such as links to online game streams. Do not cut/paste entire sections of content from other websites. Thanks.

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