I watched Alexei Shved with much interest today, and since he played PG, I thought I'd try my best to compare what I saw today (one day, mediocre competition) with the rest of the Wolves' point guards. This is just my opinion, and I want to point out a couple things wrt Shved and these comparisons:
- I went into the game with low expectations of Shved
- He should play a fair amount of off-guard for the Wolves
- This was only one game against a team that would have lost to just about any NBA team
- The sample size I use to draw inference is very small
- I am much more impressed than I thought I would be with Shved
Handles: Rubio>>Barea=Ridnour>Shved (though Shved close)
Off-ball movement: Ridnour=Shved>>Rubio>Barea
On-ball defense: Rubio>>>Barea>Ridnour>Shved
Off-ball defense: Rubio>Ridnour>Barea>Shved
Blocking out: Ridnour>Barea=Rubio>Shved
Taking charges: Rubio=Barea>Ridnour=Shved (didn't see Shved with opps)
(Not) reaching: Rubio>Barea>Shved=Ridnour
Again, it's one game, and it's against what I believe to be inferior competition. My conclusion, as meaningless as it might be given that, is that Shved has some skills that make him intriguing for the Wolves. Since he will be playing the 2 quite often, it's good to see that he's a good shooter, both set and off the dribble. He has handles enough to penetrate and get his shot off or dish off. His passing, though, isn't as crisp as Rubio's, but it's probably better than anyone else we have or have had. He will have to adjust both his passes and his dribble penetration to NBA speed, or he will struggle.
Defensively, he needs a lot of work. Frankly, I saw zero from him defensively in man defense, either on ball or off ball. However, he has some quick hands and anticipation. He actually reminded me of Stop and Pop Brandon defensively without the quickness of feet. I think this will slow his playing time and wouldn't be shocked to see him have to watch a little Malcolm Lee at times. If he truly has the will, he'll be fine. Rubio and AK should really help in this area.
Overall I was impressed more than I thought I'd be, but his competition today should not be confused with NBA competition. I would say I'm more optimistic now about him than I was heretofore. Go ahead and disagree with my rankings, but keep in mind this is all qualified on one game against inferior competition. I did a lot of extrapolation in my judgment, so I don't expect everything to be right on or everyone to agree.