2013 Bulls Draft preview: Can you have too many guards?

I got two of them in one picture! -yfbb - Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports

The thrilling conclusion of TheMoon's draft preview: Centers (link), Power Forwards (link), Wings (part 1 and 2)

I imagine no one is talking about the guards, point or combo, because the Bulls best player is a point guard and they have Hinrich for another year and then there's Teague so it makes no sense to go that route.

I disagree with this argument. If Derrick getting too many minutes is a concern, then there need to be players behind Derrick in the depth chart that Thibs will be comfortable playing 20 minutes a game. Hinrich certainly qualifies, but he himself is very injury prone (yes I know, he's not really injury prone-- he just suffers lots of different injuries all the time). Teague does not know how to play basketball. So while superficially it may appear the Bulls have depth at the PG position, I do not think this is actually the case. And it likely is not in the future, as one hopes-- with trepidation!-- that Hinrich will be moving swiftly along towards that great Reinsdorfian sinecure in the sky.

I think getting a backup guard, like getting a backup center, would be a reasonable and attainable goal.

1. BJ YOUNG (Arkansas)

Does he have a position? He seems to function much better as a scorer than as a distributor. Could he ever be a starter? What about his shot? It really fell apart this season, and he almost seems to shoot it off of his shoulder, which is weird. DX calls him a big boom or bust pick, but what is his upside? Perhaps it is Jeff Teague, also a combo guard prospect who successfully made the move to full time PG duties. Here are some numbers from Young's excellent freshman season compared to Teague's sophomore year:

NAME

2PT%

3PT%

AST/TOV

FTA/FGA

STL+BLK

PTS

Jeff Teague

50.2%

44.1%

1.06

0.59

2.80

21.6

BJ Young

55.2%

41.3%

0.99

0.32

2.10

22.9

In spite of his talent, I am not even sure he warrants a second round pick. I don't think the upside is that great, and I do not think having another raw tiny person on the team would be very useful. It depends what the other options are I suppose.

2. MYCK KABONGO (Texas)

Pro: Really showed he could get anywhere he wants to on the court. His percentage of shots at the rim was 5th highest for a perimeter player over the last three years (53%). His FTA/FGA is the highest of any perimeter player over the last three years (0.70).

Con: His size and athleticism are not elite. He is basically Marquis Teague 2.0 as a shooter/distributor:

NAME

FT%

3PT%

Per40 3PTA

%Ast'd 3PTM

Marquis Teague

71%

33%

2.40

85%

Myck Kabongo

79%

30%

2.50

75%

Average Guard

77%

35%

5.32

54%

and:

NAME

Per40 AST

AST/TOV

Marquis Teague

5.80

1.75

Myck Kabongo

5.80

1.65

Average Guard

5.33

1.76

The fact that he's comparable to Teague at the age of 21 makes me not want this player regardless of his reputation coming out of high school or his possession of a very valuable NBA skill.

3. NATE WOLTERS (South Dakota)

Here's the deal: I believe this guy is a person of non-color. And he probably talks like one of those yokels from Fargo. But he is also one hell of a basketball player.

He is an excellent shooter:

NAME

2PT Jump

3PT%

FT%

Per40 3PA

%Ast'd 3PM

Nate Wolters

45%

38%

82%

5.60

46%

Average Guard

36%

35%

77%

5.32

54%

Wolters was a really good distributor, especially considering big time scoring guards from small schools usually have comparatively low per40 assist numbers. His assist rate is 6.20 per40 versus 5.33 for average, while his AST/TOV is 2.40 versus 1.76 for the average guard.

His slashing is solid:

NAME

%At Rim

%Shots at Rim

%Ast'd at Rim

FTA/FGA

Nate Wolters

67%

30%

26%

0.46

Average Guard

62%

31%

20%

0.42

His physical impact is average: 1.10 per40 Orebs versus 1.00 for an average guard; 2.00 per40 STL+BLK versus 2.11 for average.

And his physique is pretty good for a guard. He has a small wingspan, but he is nearly 6'5'' with an 8'2'' standing reach and good weight for a combo guard.

Wolters is from a small school, and he is a senior, but he has been really good for a while now. I think the danger with prospects like Wolters is if they take too long to become dominant. Junior year appears to be that latest they can show dominance and they should be at least really good by sophomore year. The following table shows several small college guards' PERs by year:


Nate Wolters

Damian Lillard

George Hill

Norris Cole

Jimmer

Charles Jenkins

Fr.

18.8

17.0

21.4

11.0

14.8

16.9

Soph.

28.1

24.6

28.7

17.9

22.8

22.0

Jr.

28.9

28.1

N/A

20.6

30.9

23.5

Sr.

32.3

33.8

32.4

30.0

30.5

31.0

(Looking at this table you would predict Jimmer would be a pretty decent NBA player. Personally, I think he will be. He showed a lot this year in my opinion and while that Kings team is chaos incarnate, Jimmer will be a useful player in the league.)

I thought the two PG lineups with Kirk and Nate-Rob were very effective this year. That pair had a 1.21 Ortg and a 1.02 Drtg according to nbawowy.com. This Nate might be able to replace some of what the other Nate provided offensively in those kinds of lineups this year with either Derrick or Kirk running the show, while perhaps being better defensively due to the bonus 8 inches of height.

4. LORENZO BROWN (North Carolina State)

I really like watching Lorenzo Brown when he is on. If you are not familiar, please watch the following video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HL3VW7LoFrQ

This is a pretty talented guy. I love how he seems to move through the game in super slow motion. He's big too. Seeing him post up Oladipo around the 3:00 mark, they look to be nearly the same size.

His strength is his creativity:

NAME

Per40 AST

AST/TOV

%At Rim

%Shots at Rim

%Ast'd at Rim

Lorenzo Brown

8.10

2.10

61%

39%

22%

Average Guard

5.33

1.76

62%

31%

20%

But Brown has more faults than sterling qualities. It's more than just his shooting (though that is a huge problem). Like Rajon Rondo, he has a knack for making easy plays look hard, and this makes him more turnover-prone than necessary and a worse finisher than he should be given his size and athleticism.

His team underachieved; he sometimes doesn't appear to care on defense; he's overly flashy; his body language is aloof.... There is no chance the Bulls draft a guy like this. And if they did Thibs would almost certainly not play him. So while I would have no problem with this guy in principle (more ball handlers and more talent is good), in practice it would be almost guaranteed to be a doomed relationship. He's also 23. If you're going to matter in the NBA, you can't still be inconsistent in college at age 23.

5. ARCHIE GOODWIN (Kentucky)

Pros: He's very young. He's fairly athletic. He can dribble well. He impacts the game well physically, especially with his slashing:

NAME

Per40 OREB

Per40 STL+BLK

FTA/FGA

Archie Goodwin

1.80

1.90

0.59

Average Wing

1.00

2.11

0.42

Cons: All the defensive intensity of a fish gasping for air at the bottom of a boat. Cannot shoot. Turnover-prone. Thibs would never play him. If he is the only option the Bulls should try to trade their pick. This is pretty much how I felt about Teague last year.

All stats are courtesy of draftexpress.com, sports-reference.com or hoops-math.com. All per40 stats are pace adjusted unless explicitly stated otherwise.

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