Hackett's Draft Prep Part 5: Power Forwards

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

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Continuing our look at draft prospects. Most info from Draftexpress.

Bobby Portis, 16, PF
Kevon Looney, 18, PF
Montrezl Harrell, 21, PF
Christian Wood, 22, PF
Chris McCullough, 30, PF

Bobby Portis, PF, 20 years old, 18th in DX Top 100
Measurements: 6'11", 246 lbs, 7'2" wingspan, 32" max vert
Scouting report:
Athleticism: Constant motor, average wingspan for his size, very strong, decent quickness but lacks explosiveness.
Offence: Elite offensive rebounder, good percentage on putbacks, struggles finishing inside versus taller/longer players, but has a quick second jump to get more putbacks. Plays below the rim. Great jump shooter for a big - very good from midrange, and shows flashes of three point range (over 40% from three, but on less than a shot attempt per game). Solid in the post - strong backing his man down, has a couple face up moves as well, and is patient and looks to pass to cutters.
Defence: Solid and versatile defender. Has good lateral quicks for his size and can stay in front of smaller players, while his strength allows him to defend the post effectively. Poor defensive rebounder though, tends not to box out and tries to out-jump his opponents; this gets him in trouble a lot. Mediocre rim protection.

Kevon Looney, PF, 19 years old, 20th in DX Top 100
Measurements: 6'9", 222 lbs, 7'4" wingspan, no max vert data
Scouting report:
Athleticism: Average explosiveness, decent quickness, not particularly strong (thin frame for a big man).
Offence: Pretty much all hustle plays right now - very good offensive rebounder. Can shoot the ball (42% from 3) though wasn't used much in that regard (less than 2 attempts per game). Shot only 63% from the foul line, so that's not promising he'd keep up the shooting in a larger sample. Decent mechanics on the shot though. Poor finisher in the lane due to lack of strength - also has zero post up game right now. Makes good decisions when passing though, with more assists than turnovers.
Defence: Good versatility defensively. Can defend smaller players in the post, though gets bullied by larger forwards. Quick on the perimeter and has a good defensive stance, which with his wingspan allows him to contest shots and play the passing lanes.
Other: Upside, he's young, and if everything breaks right he's a floor spacing AND rim defending mobile big man. Downside, he's weak, doesn't look likely to be able to bulk up much, and has serious fatigue issues even at his current weight, with questions being asked about his conditioning and focus as his productivity dropped off as the year went on.

Montrezl Harrell, PF, 21 years old, 22nd in DX Top 100
Measurements: 6'8", 253 lbs, 7'4" wingspan, no max vert data
Scouting report:
Athleticism: So short (that 6'8" is more like 6'7.5"), but so long. Has great strength, quickness and explosive leaping ability. Very high motor player, never stops moving.
Offence: Runs the floor very well, and finishes well in transition. Great finisher around the basket, good target for lobs and on the roll in general - when he can't finish he tends to get fouled, as he invites contact. Free throws are poor, but he has improved dramatically from a 40% shooter to a 60% shooter, so there's hope there (and they are at least functional at this point). Shows occasional flashes of a jumper and a drive off pump fakes, but nothing consistently yet. Solid offensive rebounder, if not spectacular - but that's impressive given his height relative to his opponents.
Defence: Big defensive difference maker. Strong in the post and doesn't get backed down, can use his length to contest without giving up positioning. Quick enough to hedge and occasionally switch on the perimeter, using his length to close out on shooters and keep ball handlers in front of him. Lacks discipline but could grow into that - tends to leave his feet too often, gambles for blocks and commits too many fouls. Along the same lines, forgets he needs to box out, and that combined with his tendency to challenge everything leaves him constantly out of position for defensive rebounds. Still hauls in an okay number per game, but he's drawn comparisons to Kenneth Faried and this is one area where there's a massive difference between the two.
Other: The sort of player you love to play with - dives on the floor for loose balls, constant energy on both ends, cleans up the offensive glass and tries to make up for every defensive breakdown by challenging the shot. If he can learn discipline defensively, so he's less of a liability on the glass, could be a very nice piece. Only concern is that rebounding is one of those stats that translates pretty directly to the NBA - so improving in rebounding is rare.

Christian Wood, PF, 19 years old, 25th in DX Top 100
Measurements: 6'11", 216 lbs, 7'3" wingspan, no max vert data
Scouting report:
Athleticism: Tall and long, but thin right now. Looks like he'll fill out with time though. Very fluid and agile for a big man, can get off the ground effortlessly.
Offence: DX pegs him as "uniquely versatile." Good transition runner, even capable of dribbling up his own defensive rebound. Very good in PnR as the roll man, can go up and get lobs and finishes very well in traffic. Has a face up game, with a quick first step. Good shooter (73% from the free throw line) and has range out to the three point line (though inconsistent from there for now, due to some mechanics that need cleaning up), so his face up game has a good foundation, allowing him to attack closeouts. Currently lacks a real post up game, due to lack of strength, but with added weight seems to have a touch around the basket that would lend itself to that skill.
Defence: Inconsistent defender. Has the length and quickness to range out on the perimeter, contesting shots, or to hedge and recover to his man to disrupt screen actions. Tremendous shot blocker, with over 3 per 40 minutes, even though he played beside an even better rim protector at C. Very good rebounder, particularly on the defensive end. Tends to get pushed around on the block by bigger players and get beat by them sometimes for rebounds. Also has very little discipline defensively - tries to block everything, leaves his feet when he shouldn't. Gets lost on defensive coverages in the pick and roll, getting caught in no man's land between his man and the ball handler. Can be on and off effort wise - often won't have a second effort on a play, and can get beat in transition if the offensive play goes poorly.
Other: Needs to bulk up, which would address a lot of questions. But also needs some serious maturing, as his focus and effort are questionable. His shot selection on offence is also a concern - his decision making is pretty much to shoot when he has the ball, and when he does look to pass he tends to turn it over.

Chris McCullough, PF, 20 years old, 33rd in DX Top 100
Measurements: 6'9", 199 lbs, 7'3" wingspan, no max vert data
Scouting report:
Athleticism: Very thin, but lots of room to fill out. Super long, average height for a PF. Quick and agile motion. Elevates quickly as well.
Offence: Nice shooting stroke from the midrange, can't stretch out to 3 yet but it's possible he develops that. Very rudimentary drive game, straight lines only and shaky with his ball handling. He'll try some fancy moves but not very often. Doesn't have much post game now, but has touch around the basket so could end up developing one when he puts on weight. Good offensive rebounder. All that potential hasn't materialized at all though, as he was both inefficient and not used very much. Even getting to the free throw line, which he did a good deal, was a double edged sword, as he was about a 50% shooter from there.
Defence: Good anticipation defensively, blocks shots and generates steals in the passing lanes. Very quick defender, can defend on the perimeter or in the paint, though he gets pushed around inside.
Other: Biggest thing here is adding weight - and the bad news is he's barely gained weight at all over the past 3 years. So that's concerning, as if he doesn't add strength, hard to see him surviving in the NBA. The other concern is the small sample in this past season - he played only 10 games and then tore his ACL (and after an impressive first two games, had an abysmal 8 games before getting hurt).

Big class of PF's, but I don't know how excited I am by them. McCullough's not a possibility in my mind - too many question marks. The top guys (Porter and Looney) I am less than impressed with, as Porter seems like an energy guy in his best case (and being undersized AND not have a great tough around the basket is not a good combo in the NBA) and Looney might not survive in the NBA at all, though he's a swing for the fences pick if things work out. I like Harrell, he's got a useful skillset, and with more discipline could be a solid starting PF for a team with a talented C (cough, ahem, cough). Wood seems like the ultimate swing for the fences, as he could be a Draymond Green/Paul Millsap type, but he also has the most question marks of anyone. I think I lean to Harrell and Wood, with Looney as a third option (I really don't like the concerns with his conditioning, considering how much weight he'll have to put on to be at all useful).