Over at Upside & Motor, I wrote about the problems we have judging NBA prospects and why using mainstream numbers probably isn’t the best way to evaluate a college kid. Click here to read the whole piece. Here is an excerpt:
That’s the thing. These guys are going to be utilized differently. Completely differently. That’s why you can’t look at a stat like Zach LaVine’s 9.5 percent defensive rebounding rate in his one year at UCLA and label him bad on the boards in spite of his 41.5-inch vertical and superior athleticism.
“I had some leak outs,” explains LaVine, who says he runs a 4.5 40-yard dash. “I’m faster than a lot of people so I get down the court pretty quickly,”
Steve Alford made it a point to play a faster game than he had in the past during his first season as Bruins coach. LaVine was the team’s major weapon in transition. That meant he would prioritize the fast break over crashing the boards, taking off for the other end once balls clanked off the rim and often times, before the shot even made contact with the hoop.
“It’s our scouting report,” LaVine continues to expound. “If there’s a team we know we can get out and run on, we’re going to try to get out and run. And then if it’s a team that definitely goes to the glass heavy, we’re going to have more people in the box.”