Detroit Pistons Draft Dreams: Jon Leuer


Although this year’s draft lacks star power, it has an abundance of guys who were really good college players who have the ability to become really solid role players at the NBA level. Wisconsin’s Jon Leuer isn’t going to be a go-to scorer like he was in college, but he does enough things to be an OK rotation big man at some point in his career.

Info

Measurables: 6-foot-10, 228 pounds, senior PF from Wisconsin

Key stats: 18.3 points, 7.2 rebounds per game while shooting 47 percent from the field and 37 percent from three

Projected: Second round

How would he help the Pistons?

Playing in Bo Ryan’s system, Leuer is well-schooled in half-court basketball. Like most Wisconsin big men, he scored with his back to the basket and could also shoot the ball from distance.

The best thing about Leuer’s college career was that he showed drastic improvement. His scoring and rebounding numbers went up each season and his role in the offense increased because he continually added new post moves to compliment his ability to shoot. Leuer will play a bit like a stretch four in the NBA, but he’s not that athletic, so he wouldn’t have the same diversity to his offense that Charlie Villanueva does. Leuer, at his best, would be more like a poor man’s Channing Frye or Ryan Anderson. It doesn’t necessarily fill a need for the Pistons, but players who bring the skills that those guys have always find a spot on a NBA bench.

How wouldn’t he help the Pistons?

Villanueva’s presence makes it unlikely the Pistons would take another perimeter-oriented big man. Leuer does have some post-up ability, which the Pistons need, but his lack of bulk makes it a question mark as to whether that part of his game will translate to the NBA. Much like fellow senior bigs JaJuan Johnson and Keith Benson, Leuer is looked at as an upperclassmen player whose body might not fill out much more while younger bigs in the draft might be still growing.

What are others saying?

From DraftExpress:

Its unlikely Leuer will be a frequent post scorer in the NBA, as he lacks the lower body strength to consistently establish position. He’s not all that explosive and may struggle to get his shot over longer defenders, and doesn’t have a wide array of counter, all of which could leave him limited to fade-aways and tougher post shots in the NBA. However, he has enough in the way of post moves to take advantage when he does get a favorable matchup.

From ESPN:

There are a number of NBA teams who need stretch 4s in their offensive schemes, and as far as big-men shooters go, Leuer is one of the best in the draft. Despite playing in the Big Ten, Wisconsin always goes a bit under-scouted. Leuer and teammate Jordan Taylor are probably a bit underrated right now.

From NBADraft.net:

He possesses excellent footwork in the post, using an array of post moves that make him unpredictable with his back to the basket … He shows nice touch in the post, and looks comfortable turning and shooting in any direction … He has range up to 21 feet out, shooting 39% from downtown at the college level … His handle is better than average for a college forward/center, and he uses it to create open looks for himself in the post and on the perimeter … Has shown he’s aware of what’s available around him in terms of passing out of the post … Offensively he’s very efficient, shooting 52% from the floor while only turning it over once a game … Defensively Leuer has a high IQ, where he seems to position himself efficiently, illustrated by his (low) 2.1 fouls per game.

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