Detroit Pistons Draft Dreams: Iman Shumpert

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A big, athletic point guard who sometimes struggles to involve others in the offense? Iman Shumpert likely wouldn’t get Pistons fans excited if that’s the only part of the scouting report you read, but as a projected second round pick, he does bring one discernible skill to the table that the Pistons would like.

Info

Measurables: 6-foot-5, 209 pounds, junior G from Georgia Tech

Key stats: 17.3 points, 5.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.7 steals per game while shooting 41 percent

Projected: Early second round

How would he help the Pistons?

Rodney Stuckey proponents have spent the last four seasons or so (and I’m guilty of this as much as anyone) talking about Stuckey’s defensive potential. If Stuckey ever fully engages his unique mix of size, strength and quickness, if he embraces the mentality of a stopper, he could become one of the best defensive guards in the league. Iman Shumpert, on the other hand, comes into the draft with a defensive reputation that precedes him. He’s big, fast and strong and despite the struggles of Georgia Tech during his career, he’s had great defensive performances against some big time college stars. He’s big enough to body up and be physical, but his quickness and long wingspan helped him create turnovers as he averaged nearly three steals per game.

Holes in his game offensively knock Shumpert into a likely second round pick, but if he enters the league using defense as his ticket and willing to play that role, he can be a very useful player on a team’s bench and be a potentially valuable second round pick.

How wouldn’t he help the Pistons?

The shot selection is a killer. The Pistons already have too many shoot-first guards on the roster. Shumpert may certainly be able to straighten that part of his game out, but it will be an adjustment. He dominated the ball at Tech and too often fell in love with his jumper. He shot just 27 percent from 3-point range. Last season, he attempted 151 threes. Each of his three seasons at Tech, that number went up. Worse, he was a pretty good shooter when he stayed inside the arc, making almost 48 percent of his shots inside the 3-point line. Questionable shot selection and over-reliance on jumpers are not uncommon in young guards, but someone with Shumpert’s size advantage is capable of getting much better shots in closer range.

What are others saying?

From DraftExpress:

Shumpert’s most consistent contributions come in transition, where he can use his speed and first step most effectively. A solid finisher who has become more adept at drawing contact and finishing plays himself instead of forcing tough passes, Shumpert still flashes good court vision on occasion, but has a great deal of room to improve offensively on the whole.

From ESPN:

Shumpert has been offensively challenged all year. He’s struggled to find his range just about anywhere on the floor. But his defense? Wow. He did a remarkable job on James Anderson and Evan Turner. If he can get it going offensively as a junior, he’s got the chance to be a lottery pick in 2011.

From The Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

It seems as if Shumpert is in a pool with other point guards – including Shelvin Mack (Butler), Malcolm Lee (UCLA), Diante Garrett (Iowa State), Nolan Smith (Duke) and Isaiah Thomas (Washington) – in which he’ll have to distinguish himself just to have a chance to get into the first round.

Hickory High’s Similarity Scores

Here’s a breakdown of how Ian Levy from Hickory High came up with his similarity scores.

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