NBA Draft: Comparing ALL-USA players now

NBA Draft: Comparing ALL-USA players now

ALL-USA

NBA Draft: Comparing ALL-USA players now

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While it is too early to tell how the 10 former American Family Insurance ALL-USA players taken in last night's NBA draft will do in the pros, we can look back at the last two years.

It's clear that the 2013 draftees were not as strong as the group of ALL-USA players in 2012. Bear in mind, though, that the ALL-USA players in the 2012 have an extra year under their belt. Another difference is the much-larger sample size, as there were 11 former ALL-USA players in the 2012 NBA and only six in the 2013 draft.
 

How the ALL-USA players in the 2012 draft are faring:

Anthony Davis, No. 1 by New Orleans Pelicans

ALL-USA first-team choice in 2010 out of Perspectives Charter (Chicago) has averaged 17.3 points a game, including 20.8 last season. Also has averaged 9.1 rebounds (10.0 in 2013) and 2.3 blocks (2.8 this season).

Downside: Has missed 33 games over two seasons, mostly because of injuries.

Upside: Already an NBA All-Star in his second season.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, No. 2 by Charlotte Hornets

ALL-USA first-team choice in 2011 out of St. Patrick (Elizabeth, N.J.), he has averaged 8.2 points and 5.6 rebounds over two seasons.

Downside: His stats slipped a bit this season compared to his rookie year, with his games played, points per game and rebounds per game all down. His shooting percentage outside of five feet was an abysmal 28.2%.

Upside: Is an athletic defender who, when he doesn’t get in foul trouble, can lock down a scorer. Knowing his shooting limitations, he’s smart and athletic enough that 62.9% of his shots were within five feet of the basket.

Bradley Beal, No. 3 by Washington Wizards

A first-team choice in 2011 from Chaminade Prep (St. Louis), Beal averaged 17.1 points this past regular season and an impressive 19.1 points a game in the playoffs.

Downside: Has shown he is prone to stress fractures, missing time in his first two seasons with the same injury. Needs to work on his perimeter defense.

Upside: Has an excellent inside-outside game, buoyed by his 40.2% three-point shooting. Improved in every category offensively, including some intangibles, such as his ball-handling.

Harrison Barnes, No. 7 by Golden State Warriors

Barnes, a 2010 ALL-USA Player of the Year, has averaged 9.3 points and 4.1 rebounds over his first two seasons.

Downside: After starting 81 games in his first season, he was forced to the bench, starting only 24 games. Shoots too many mid-range jumpers and makes too few.

Upside: Improved, albeit slightly, in every offensive category. Came up big at times in key situations, averaging 16.1 points and 6.4 rebounds in his 12 playoff games.

Austin Rivers, No. 10 by New Orleans Pelicans

Rivers, the 2011 ALL-USA Player of the Year, has averaged 7.0 points and 2.2 assists a game in his two NBA seasons.

Downside: Despite his improvement, he was relegated to the bench, starting only four games this season.

Upside: His offensive numbers were up and he became a better defender.

Kendall Marshall, No. 13 by Phoenix Suns

A third-team ALL-USA player in 2010, Marshall was traded by the Phoenix Suns after averaging only 3.0 points a game his rookie season. Last season, after being cut by the Washington Wizards, and spending time in the NBDL, he resurrected his career with the Los Angeles Lakers, averaging 8.0 points and 8.8 assists in 54 games, including 45 starts.

Downside: His effort can’t always make up for his lack of athleticism on defense. His three-point shooting has really improved but he’s still a streaky outside shooter.

Upside: He’s a pure pass-first point guard with good court vision, something that every NBA team could use at times.

John Henson, No. 14 by Milwaukee Bucks

Second-team ALL-USA choice in 2009. He averaged 11.1 points and 7.1 rebounds a game this past season.

Downside: Can’t hit a shot outside the paint and struggles from the free-throw line and against bigger centers.

Upside: He’s a strong defender, particularly at the rim, making good use of his wingspan. Showed a big jump in improvement last season in nearly all offensive categories. Is an excellent shooter in the paint, hitting

Terrence Jones, No. 18 by Houston Rockets

A second-team ALL-USA player in 2010 from Jefferson (Portland, Ore.), Jones averaged 12.1 points and 6.9 rebounds this past season.

Downside: Needs to improve his outside shooting and adjusting to pick-and-rolls on defense.

Upside: Really raised his game his second season, seeing his points per game jump by nearly seven points and his rebounds by 3.5. Plays exceptionally well in transition for a big man.

Jared Sullinger, No. 21 by Boston Celtics

A 2010 ALL-USA first-teamer, he more than doubled his scoring this season, averaging 13.2 points. He increased his rebounding from 5.9 a game in 2012 to 8.2 this season.

Downside: Struggles with his weight and a back injury his rookie season and an ankle injury this season may be the result. As an undersized power forward, he has difficulty guarding the rim.

Upside: Showed real improvement last season, nearly averaging a double-double. Has good hands and good footwork. Has a solid mid-range jump shot at the top of the key.

Marquis Teague, No 29 by Chicago Bulls

The 2010 ALL-USA second-team guard is averaging 2.3 points and 1.4 assists through two seasons.

Downside: Unpolished game and needs to improve his shot selection and assist-to-turnover ratio.

Upside: Has a great first step and 40.5 inch vertical leap. Is athletic enough to be a good defender when he gets sustained minutes.

Doron Lamb, No. 42 by Milwaukee Bucks

ALL-USA second-team player in 2010  has averaged 3.5 points and 1.0 rebound a game over two seasons. Was traded by Bucks to Orlando Magic midway through this past season.

Downside: Not a strong rebounder, even for a guard. His weakness in ball-handling has made him a liability at times on the court.

Upside: Should get better with more playing time. Is an above-average three-point shooter at the top of the key.
 

ALL-USA Players in the 2013 NBA Draft

Anthony Bennett, No. 1 by Cleveland Cavaliers.

Bennett, an ALL-USA third-team choice in 2012 out of Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.), averaged 4.2 points and three rebounds.

Downside: Had one of the least productive rookie seasons for an overall No. 1 pick in recent memory, languishing the entire season on the bench.

Upside: Closed the season on an upswing, Played better in nearly every category after the All-Star break.

Cody Zeller, No. 4 by Charlotte Hornets

Zeller, an ALL-USA second-team choice in 2011 out of Washington, Ind.,  averaged 6.0 points and 4.3 rebounds this past season.

Downside: At times, was a liability on defense and was foul-prone, averaging 5.8 fouls per 48 minutes.

Upside: Made the NBA All-Rookie second team and showed improvement after the All-Star break, averaging 7.7 points and 5.0 rebounds in the latter part of the season.

Nerlens Noel, No. 6 pick by the New Orleans Pelican (traded on draft day to the Philadelphia 76ers)

Noel, the ALL-USA Player of the Year in 2012, missed the season while recovering from knee surgery.

Downside: His health is a question mark until he plays a full season.

Upside: Is healthy enough to play in the NBA Summer League and gained some needed weight during his season away from the court.

Shabazz Muhammad, No. 14 by Utah Jazz and traded to Minnesota Timberwolves

Muhammad, a first-team choice in 2012, averaged only 3.9 points a game in 7.8 minutes per game.

Downside: Needs to develop a mid-range jumper and establish himself more from outside.

Upside: Looking at his stats (23.7 points per 48 minutes), it’s clear if he gets a chance, he can be a consistent scorer.

Ryan Kelly, No. 48 overall by the Los Angeles Lakers.

A third-team choice from Ravenscroft (Raleigh, N.C.) in 2009, he averaged 8.2 points and 3.7 rebounds a game.

Downside: Played most of the season in the D-League. Has difficulty on defense against stronger, more athletic post players.

Upside: Once he was called up, he was able to contribute. Is a good outside shooter and good passer, with a 2-1 assist-to-turnover ratio while averaging 22.2 minutes a game over 59 games.

Peyton Siva, No. 56 overall by the Detroit Pistons.

A third-team ALL-USA choice in 2009 out of Franklin (Seattle), he averaged 2.3 points a game.

Downside: Averaged only 9.3 minutes a game. Shot only 23.3% from three-point range.

Upside: His strong on-ball defense may be utilized more by new coach Stan Van Gundy. If he can cut down on his turnovers, he has the passing touch to be the Pistons’ point guard, averaging 7.3 assists per 48 minutes.

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