May 26, 2011

NBA Draft Profiles: Enes Kanter, Kentucky

Stats: Ineligible for 2011 NCAA Season

Age: 19, freshman


Listed: 6'11", 260 lb

Official: 6'9 3/4" (no shoes), 6'11 1/4" (shoes), 7'1 1/2" (wingspan), 9'1 1/2" (standing reach), 259 lb

Strengths: Kanter is a big, physical body on the block. He's an excellent rebounder, much of which is the result of his ability to establish and hold position on the block. His strength allows him to finish through contact, and he has a sense of where defenders are when he is around the rim. He's shown the ability to back down defenders and has an adequate post game; he's very patient when he has the ball and understands how to score inside. He's a smart player with a high basketball IQ. Kanter also has a solid midrange jumper when facing up, he knocks down his free throws, and he has a good-looking technique on his shot.

Weaknesses: Kanter's post game right now is mostly the result of his strength. He still needs to develop his back-to-the-basket moves, but that should come with time. Ball security may end up being an issue at a higher level of play. Kanter's not exactly and explosive athlete and he doesn't run the floor particularly well. He's also not an imposing defender and won't be much of a shot blocker at the next level.


Best Case Scenario: Al Jefferson. Aggressive offensive player who has an impressive post game and loves to attack the basket. Very similar in terms of build in addition, although Kanter has trimmed some lb.s to move better, which he displayed at the Draft combine. Nonetheless, he is a physical post player who establishes positions, goes after rebounds, but isn’t the best defender due to lack of athleticism.

Worst Case Scenario: Andray Blatche. In terms of raw talent, Kanter definitely has it like Blatche and may actually play more disciplined and already has a more mature game than Blatche currently does. Both have great motors and the ability to play physical, which translates to success at any level with natural gifts like Kanter.

Outlook: The surprise player and star of the 2010 Nike Hoop Summit, Kanter dominated the game in the paint for the international team. He had 34 points and 13 rebounds in 24 minutes against the best high school players in the nation, including Jared Sullinger. He averaged 18 points and 16 boards in the Euro leagues. I think he is an amazing draft prospect with a skill set and game that is beyond his years, as he is only 19. His frame and length are everything you would hope for from an ideal post player, and his skill set take it up yet another notch. Should be an intriguing prospect to many NBA GM’s because of his combination of size, length, skill, and intrigue based on last years Nike Hoop Summit performance, although the fact that he hasn't played in two years will be a concern. He was ineligible at Kentucky and bounced around high schools the year before that. Nonetheless, a rare and incredibly gifted post player at a young age who is capable of eventually putting up 20 and 10 in the NBA.

Draft Range: 1st Round Pick, 2nd-5th overall

And the experts say...

Fran Fraschilla: "While international players are still met with skepticism by some, ultimately evaluating them is no different than evaluating a player in the Big Ten or ACC. International draft busts are not the only kind found in the first round. Kanter's situation is unique in that there is a small body of work that shows a high level of potential for success in the NBA. Some NBA teams will see Kanter's situation as a crapshoot. Cleveland has three viable options with the No. 1 pick -- Kanter, Duke's Kyrie Irving and Arizona's Derrick Williams. If I were the Cavaliers, I'd analyze Kanter closely before passing on him at No. 1. I don't see him being available when they select again at No.4. "

Draft Express: "As we mentioned above, this has been a productive couple of days for Enes Kanter who has impressed in workouts and measured out at nearly 6-10 without shoes with a 7-1 ½ wingspan and 260 pounds frame. His wingspan doesn't compare favorably to recently drafted PF/C's like Derrick Favors (7-4 wingspan) or Ekpe Udoh (7-4 ½ wingspan), but puts his right on par with Al Horford (6-8 ¾ without shoes, 7-0 ¾ wingspan, 246 pounds) and Nick Collison (6-8 ¾ without shoes, 7-1 ½ wingspan, 255 pounds. Kanter doesn't have long arms for his height, but he has a massive frame for a 19 year-old." "Complete package in the paint with his back to the basket, face up game, post moves, and finishing ability. Limited only by athleticism and a developing game, he is physically imposing with great potential and will be able to bully the paint for any team for years to come in the NBA.”

NBA Draft Profiles: Enes Kanter, Kentucky
Wednesday, May 25, 2011

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