Tag: prospects

ATL News / Sports

Hawks best prospects according to Bleacher Report

The Hawks have one of the best young cores in the NBA. Their superstar point guard, Trae Young, is only 23 years old and still ascending. The recently acquired All-Star, Dejounte Murray, is 25 years old. The ever-reliable and ultra-efficient John Collins is 24 years old. And De’Andre Hunter, who has high expectations entering his fourth season, is also 24 years old. Atlanta’s basketball club has a bright future, but that’s not even considering the even younger prospects on the roster.

Greg Schwartz of Bleacher Report recently ranked each NBA team’s three best prospects with the criteria being 23 years old or younger, three seasons or less in the NBA, and on a standard, guaranteed contract for the upcoming season. Schwartz’s list was comprised of Onyeka Okongwu, AJ Griffin, and Jalen Johnson.

It’s only a matter of time before Okongwu passes Clint Capela as the best center on this roster. He’s got incredible switchability on defense and is already a good rim protector and shot finisher around the basket. He needs to develop somewhat of an outside shot to claim the starting job, however.

Griffin slipped to 16th overall in this year’s draft, giving the Hawks incredible value with a player who could end up being the best three-point shooter in his class (44.7 percent at Duke) if his durability isn’t an issue.

Johnson is a big, athletic forward who didn’t see the floor much as a rookie but could receive more minutes this season with Danilo Gallinari traded in the Dejounte Murray deal. He’s an excellent lob threat who needs to improve his three-point shooting.

OO was phenomenal when he was on the court last season. He’s a menace defensively and even draws comparisons to Bam Adebayo quite a bit. The former Chino Hills star improved in nearly every facet of the game in his second season, increasing his field goal percentage from 64.4% to 69%, his field goal attempts from 3.0 to 4.7, his free throw percentage from 63.2% to 72.7%, his rebounds from 3.3 to 5.9 per game, his blocks from 0.7 to 1.3 per game, and his points from 4.6 to 8.2 per game.

And now, the Hawks are determined to get him more playing time as he approaches his third NBA season. Okongwu’s versatility is undeniable. He’s able to step out on the perimeter and defend smaller, quicker guards and also defend the best centers in the Association in the paint. There were moments against Joel EmbiidKarl-Anthony Towns, and Giannis Antetokounmpo where the USC product looked like a Defensive Player of the Year candidate.

On offense, Okongwu has paired very nicely with Young in the pick-and-roll. He has the ability to score or facilitate out of it too. His touch around the rim is already head and shoulders better than Clint Capela. Moreover, OO told media members in his exit interview that he vows to return in 2022-23 with a jump shot. If he can even be a serviceable shooter from the midrange, his impact will grow exponentially, which will result in him eating into Capela’s minutes.

Griffin is set to have a somewhat significant role as a rookie. After trading away Kevin Huerter, the team needs shooters. If there’s anything the former Duke Blue Devil can do, it’s shoot. Check out some of these metrics from college:

  • Spot up: 91st percentile (65/151)
  • Off screen: 98th percentile (15/24)
  • All HC jumpers: 97th percentile (77/169)
  • Catch & shoot: 95th percentile (48/105)
  • All jumpers off dribble: 95th percentile (29/64)

Jalen Johnson had a less-than-ideal rookie season. The frontcourt was loaded with no obvious path for JJ to get minutes. When he did get playing time with the Hawks, he had a minimal impact — only averaging 2.4 points and 1.2 rebounds in 5.5 minutes per game. Johnson did have a couple of games where he totaled more than 10 points, adding seven rebounds in one of those contests, but most of his production and any glimpse into what kind of player he could become came with the College Park Skyhawks — averaging 20.1 points, 11.8 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.7 blocks, and 1.3 steals per game while canning 37.5% of his 3’s and shooting 44.8% from the field.

The team hopes Johnson will bud into an impactful two-way player, but the sample size is far too small to draw any rational analysis. It will be fascinating to see what he can do in his second year.

Photographer: Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire



Source link

ATL News / Sports

Braves lose one of their top prospects for the season

A couple of days ago, I talked about top prospect Braden Shewmake leaving a game with an injury after a nasty collision with Travis Demeritte. Braden Shewmake was carted off the field last night with a...

ATL News / Sports

A deeper look at the prospects the Braves traded away at the deadline

One of the most exciting days of the MLB season — the trade deadline — came and passed earlier this week. The Braves weren’t the loudest team, but they did address all of their “needs” one way...

ATL News / Sports

Could any prospects contribute to the Braves in the second half?

Last season, the Braves had a ton of unexpected contributions from prospects on their way to the World Series. Tucker Davidson, who spent most of the season on the IL, started a World Series game. Kyle...

ATL News / Sports

Multiple Braves Top 20 Prospects are scorching hot to start 2022

The Braves have gotten some good performances out of their prospects to start 2022, and while we can’t mention everyone, there’s plenty of good mojo to go around: No. 6 @Braves prospect Braden...

ATL News / Sports

Falcons ‘like, love’ two NFL prospects says Peter King in latest mock draft

With the first round of the draft three days away, the NFL world is going wild over what should be an exciting and unexpecting night. For the first time in many years, there is a consistent feeling that...

ATL News / Sports

FiveThirtyEight: Probability specific prospects are available for Falcons first round pick

The Falcons have been tied to more than a dozen different prospects with their first-round pick. Atlanta has been mocked edge rushers, pass catchers, signal callers, and a couple of defensive backs....

ATL News / Sports

NFL draft prospects available if Falcons trade down

The Falcons are looking to build this franchise brick by brick; coming off a 7-10 season and trading your veteran quarterback warrants a rebuilding designation. Atlanta is armed with five picks in the...

ATL News / Sports

Braves Top Prospects: Who’s Hot, Who’s Not: Week 1

Just like I did yesterday for the major-league squad, I will go through the Braves’ top 20 prospects every Friday, discussing who is trending in the right direction and who is in need of a pick me up....

ATL News / Sports

ESPN’s NFL draft 2022 comps for potential Falcons prospects

As the 2022 NFL draft inches closer, we’ll hear more and more about prospects, their projections, and comparisons between current and former NFL players. Those comps can be based on a variety of...

ATL News / Sports

Braves: Two top shortstop prospects enjoyed themselves in the opening series of the season

The Braves have a couple of rising stars at the AA level in Mississippi. Jake Gordon talked about Michael Harris yesterday, but Vaughn Grissom is another young man to keep an eye out for this season. The...

ATL News / Sports

2022 NFL draft QB prospects that could replace Matt Ryan

Kenny Pickett On Monday, Kenny Pickett’s Pro Day was attended by every major player for a quarterback in this year’s draft — Falcons included. They also met with Pickett during the combine in Indy,...

ATL News / Sports

Falcons staff out in full force at Cincinnati’s Pro Day, QB Desmond Ridder headlines Bearcat prospects

The Falcons are in the market for a signal caller after the team traded Matt Ryan to the Colts. Atlanta signed Marcus Mariota to seemingly be the stopgap guy while the front office searches for the future...

ATL News / Sports

Falcons NFL draft prospects who can replace Calvin Ridley

The Falcons have been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons in the past week as the NFL handed down Calvin Ridley’s suspension for gambling on NFL games during his time away from the team, a...

ATL News / Sports

Falcons 2022 NFL draft prospects with highest Relative Athletic Score (RAS)

Relative Athletic Scores grade a player’s athleticism on a 0 to 10 scale compared to their peer group, and though athletic tests don’t always forecast how a prospect’s career will go, they do give...

ATL News / Sports

Falcons 2022 draft prospects: Winners and losers of NFL Combine

The NFL Combine wrapped up Sunday from Lucas Oil Stadium, and it was one of the most impressive group of prospects I’ve seen in my life. The term weight room warrior is designated for players who light...

ATL News / Sports

Several Falcons draft prospects elect to skip NFL Combine

The Falcons have an excellent opportunity to get their hands on draft prospects at this week’s scouting combine. However, there are a few players the Falcons might have interest in that have announced...

ATL News / Sports

NFL draft prospects in the cards for Falcons at 8th overall pick

The Falcons are set to pick 8th in April’s draft, and have an excellent opportunity to add an elite-caliber player. Given the roster’s deficiencies at most positions, the Falcons really can’t go...

ATL News / Sports

Predicting the Braves top 10 prospects in 2023

Yesterday, I predicted when each member of the Braves’ top 10 prospects would make their MLB debut. The Braves’ farm system is much thinner than in years past, but the top is still solid. However,...

ATL News / Sports

2022 CFP National Championship draft prospects that should interest Falcons

As the Falcons enter the offseason, the front office will be busy scouting impending free agents and prospects eligible for April’s draft. Many of those prospects appeared in Monday’s National...

ATL News / Sports

Intriguing notes about the Braves top 10 prospects from Baseball America

Due to graduations, the Braves system isn’t what it once was when it was regarded as the best farm system in baseball. Still, there’s plenty of talent, especially in the top 10, and there are several...