As hinted at yesterday, the Wolves selected UCLA guard Zach LaVine with the 13th pick in the draft. LaVine is noted for his off the charts athleticism, wowing people with his jumping ability during workouts.
However, he showed little in the way of actual basketball skills during his one season at UCLA. Of particularl note given his physical abilities is that he was singularly unable to get to the rim, never mind finish, in the half court.
While LaVine is very young, having just turned 19, he hit none of the statistical markers that indicate a good prospect, and in fact will be an interesting data point for the analytics folks who do draft analysis. None of the stat based models like him as a prospect due to his poor off the ball numbers. vjl110's EWP model pegs him as the 30th best prospect in the draft, with a 33% bust likelihood and a 5% star likelihood.
In fact, LaVine appears to be the third best prospect in this draft from his own college team, as Kyle Anderson and Jordan Adams both seem more appealing.
LaVine did make 37.5% of his threes in his one college season; that's probably his best stat. But his assist/steal/block numbers were terrible, and frankly he often looked like he had no idea what he was doing out there for UCLA.
He is a major, long-term project, with absolutely no guarantee that it will work out. He has impressive physical tools, but clearly has not yet learned to use them effectively on the basketball court. When and whether he will ever do so is the question. While I wish him the best, of course, there were several more appealing players available at this spot.
LaVine is not someone we can expect to see significant playing time this season for what we hope is a competitive team.
Here is an interview and workout video:
And here is his Scouting video