Love him or hate, former Kentucky Wildcats great Rex Chapman has plenty of experience in the NBA as both a player and an executive. A 13-year playing career was proceeded by a brief stint as the Director of Basketball Operations with the Phoenix Suns, and he’d eventually work as the Denver Nuggets Vice President of Player Personnel.
Needless to say, Chapman has plenty of experience scouting and evaluating prospects for the NBA Draft. He’s gathered evaluations from 15 different NBA scouts, GMs and other execs to see what they thought of this year’s crop of prospects.
Some of their breakdowns were similar to that of what the national media sees, but the way they view Julius Randle is very different. Most view Randle as a Top 5 pick, but the execs Rex spoke with said Randle could fall out of the Top 10.
I found it interesting however, that ONLY 3 of these 14 NBA-people say that they themselves would draft Randle in that 4-9 range. A majority of these guys like JR in the 10-14 range. What they’re saying about JR:
“While he’s a terrific rebounder, his defensive issues are frightening. Worst defensive big-man in the draft.”
“How many times can a guy catch the ball at the top of the key, drive into 3-defenders and give it to the other team?”
“I question his feel for the game and basketball IQ.”
“Will have to improve his face-up game (jump-shot), because in our league guys will just play behind, wait for him to jump, and then play volleyball when he releases it.”
Is it possible that Randle is actually waiting to declare for the draft because h’es not sure if he wants to? Is he actually being told he could fall out of the Top 10, and thinks a return to UK could lead to him being take much higher in 2015?
It’s possible, but not likely. Randle is probably waiting for something or someone before making his announcement, possibly at a ceremony or press conference with friends and family.