Top 5 Point Guard Prospects: Pre March Madness
The 2017 NBA Draft class is very obscure in some fashions. Most of the top talent in the draft are primarily focused around two positions being point guard and small forward. It is not like a traditional draft where talent can be scattered across the position field as well as the draft board. This very well may be a draft where teams genuinely focus their boards on value instead of need. As we take a look at the top prospects at their respective positions, you will start to see overwhelming talent in some areas whereas others will be scarce.
5. De’Aaron Fox- Kentucky 6’3”/175 lbs.
Fox has a traditional point guard factor to him. Very good passer and quick with the ball in his hands. Can penetrate and finish at the rim while also being able to make big plays throughout the game and in clutch moments. His jump shot is not polished yet and will need to develop, but he could step right into the NBA and contribute from day one.
Pro Comparison: Deron Williams
4. Dennis Smith- NC State 6’2”/195 lbs.
Smith has supreme talent with incredible athleticism. He does have one glaring problem in my eyes though. Dennis Smith is a player that gives up the ball way too much and without much of an excuse given his team was not close to making the tournament. I see a lack of confidence and too much of a willingness to surrender a possession. With that being said, he is a fantastic athlete who can penetrate, shoot, pass, and defend. High upside, but needs to be coached well.
Pro Comparison: Baron Davis
3. Frank Ntilikina- France 6’5”/190 lbs.
Ntilikina has that Dante Exum factor to him simply because he’s semi-unknown. After watching him, his upside is up there with some of the best in the class. A big point guard that can do every aspect of the game well. He thrives as a passer and a facilitator of an offense, but has the potential to have the ability to take over as a scorer. Has a very solid stroke from outside and does well finishing in traffic. This is a kid that will easily go top ten and by draft time, could see himself going top five.
Pro Comparison: Gary Payton
2. Markelle Fultz- Washington 6’4”/190 lbs.
Yes, I get it. I’m crazy. But I genuinely think Fultz is the second best point guard in the draft. However, that doesn’t mean I think he is any less talented than people say. Fultz has the complete makeup as a star who can play both guard positions. He is an especially good penetrator and finisher at the rim with a very solid outside stroke. He can get streaky at times, but that shouldn’t be a problem as he finishes developing. Also a hard-nosed defender fantastic hands. A potential star in the NBA possibly at two positions.
Pro Comparison: James Harden
1. Lonzo Ball- UCLA 6’6”/190 lbs.
Ball has something about him that you don’t normally see in draft prospects. Maybe it has something to do with his father, but his ability is surreal. Not often do you see college players that have pure intangibles infused in their game this early. Already with a winning attitude and the appetite of a dog. His upside is incredibly high with his ability to shoot, defend, rebound, and his phenomenal facilitating ability. He will be a true general of an offense and has the potential to be one of the better players in the NBA. A legend could be in the making.
Pro Comparison: Jason Kidd