Tha Sports Junkies 101

Player Comps for NBA Draft Prospects 6-10

NBA Draft Regina/acrphoto/ Via Flickr


Part two is here. Below we reveal the top NBA Draft prospect comps for prospects 6-10. These comps are based on the interactive prospect comps machine I created.

As stated in my first piece with comps for the top 5 players, found here, these comparisons are based on offense only, and are comparisons of style, not skill.

Let’s say the machine says my comp is Isaiah Thomas. That doesn’t mean I’m as good as Thomas, or that I have the potential to be Thomas. All that means is that Thomas and I do a lot of the same types of actions on offense.

Those are the actions that are compared:

  1. Spot Up
  2. Isolation
  3. Pick & Roll – Ball Handler
  4. Cut
  5. Use an off-ball screen
  6. Post Up
  7. Pick & Roll – Roll Man
  8. Putbacks
  9. Handoffs

The only subjective part of this piece is that I chose the first five prospects to analyze after reviewing film and analytics earlier in the year.

My top 10, in order, is: Ball, Fultz, Jackson, Monk, Isaac, Tatum, Fox, Smith, Collins, Markkanen.

The 5 covered in this piece are the remaining players from the projected top 10 picks that weren’t covered in my first piece.

NBA Draft Prospect Top Comps

6. Malik Monk

93.7%: Wayne Ellington

93.4%: Jodie Meeks

93.4%: Mike Dunleavy

Monk’s comps make sense. 66% of his total offensive possessions were used off screens and spotting up. Monk will be a player who will add floor spacing and be able to attack the basket for whichever team drafts him. He rarely cut (3.46% of his possessions), and also only had 18.15% of his possessions as the pick and roll ball handler or in handoffs. He had only average effectiveness in each of those two areas against college competition, so it doesn’t look as though he’ll be prepared to play too much of the point guard position in at least his first year.


7. De’Aaron Fox

96.0%: Andrew Harrison

95.5%: Raymond Felton

94.9%: Rodney Stuckey

Monk’s teammate, De’Aaron Fox, will be quite prepared to play the point guard position. Fox’s profile pulled up some interesting comps. 47.46% of his possessions were as the pick and roll ball handler. Another 22.03% were spotting up (only 36% of which he caught and shot) and 20.34% in isolation (which is pretty high). He was rarely used in handoffs (3.73%), cut (2.71%), or used off screens (1.69%). His non-factor as an off-ball player either cutting or running off screens won’t mean great things from a modern NBA offensive system perspective.


8. Dennis Smith, Jr

95.9%: Kyrie Irving

93.1%: Jamal Crawford

92.7%: James Harden

I’ll reiterate again: These are style comps, not skill or ceiling comps. Smith’s comps JUMP off the page, especially compared to the other prospects we’re looking at today. At NC State Smith really took on a ball-dominant (some might say ball stopping) role. 70.27% of his possessions were as the pick and roll ball handler (40.27%) and an incredible 30.00% were in isolation. Smith will undoubtedly take on a much different role wherever he lands. It’ll be interesting seeing how he adapts.

9. Zach Collins

95.7%: Al Jefferson

91.9%: Diamond Stone

90.5%: Enes Kanter

Zach Collins is a player that intrigues, but his comps are pretty bland. 50.21% of his possessions were spent posting up, 19.92% rolling/popping/slipping screens, 12.45% on putbacks, 10.79% cutting, and only 5.81% spotting up. For a guy that can stretch the floor, he didn’t do it much at all at Gonzaga.

10. Lauri Markkanen

90.2%: Kristaps Porzingis

89.8%: Paul Millsap

89.7%: Anthony Davis

We can’t say the same for Markkanen. 55.25% of his possessions were spent on those big man actions (post up, rolling, and putbacks) while 21.33% of his possessions were spent spotting up. He even ran the pick and roll 5.94% of his possessions and ran off screens 8.74%. Those spotting up and off screen numbers for a big man played a large role in these top comps.


Next Up: We will look at NBA Draft prospects 11-15 (domestic players only) and their top comparisons. Stay tuned.


Rise to the occasion.

– Cranjy McB


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