NBA Position: Small Forward
I'll be honest, I haven't seen him play much other than in highlight videos, but judging by his stats and detailed scouting reports, he sounds like a chucker with the upside to be among the best SF's in the draft class IF he commits to it. George looks like he has a good feel for the game, but the mental part and the desire to be great could be lacking. He's young and you can chalk up some of his laziness, poor shot selection, and high turnover rate to immaturity. But at age 20, that excuse doesn't fly for some. George's saving grace is his sweet stroke, seemingly effortless game, ideal size for his position, versatility, and good athleticism. That's a lot to fall in love with.
It was interesting that he shot a very good 47% his freshman year, but plummeted to 42% his sophomore year, due mostly to his infatuation with the 3 point shot, undisciplined shot selection, and being the main focus of opposing defenses. On the other hand, the fact that his free throw shooting rocketed from 69.7% to impressive 90.9% shows that he could improve his game immensely if he commits to putting in the work.
Psychological test are very important if you're going to draft a guy like George this high in the draft. Will they clash with the coach or teammates? Will their bad habits/demeanor poison the team culture? Do they have the work ethic to reach their full potential? Are we looking at the next Tracy McGrady, Rudy Gay, Travis Outlaw, Wilson Chandler, or the next Gerald Green? You could probably rule out the latter because he was able to play fairly well at the collegiate level. But, I have my doubts he will be a star even remotely close to McGrady's level. Stars of his magnitude dominate their competition on every level. George has not done so, even in the weak WAC conference.
How does he fit with the Warriors?
The Warriors' biggest needs are rebounding, scoring in the post, and perimeter defense. Unfortunately, these three attributes don't come to mind when discussing Paul George. He provides additional scoring with his range and ability to drive and finish. He also has the potential to develop into a solid defender because of his good length and quickness, but if he can be an upgrade over Maggette, Azubuike, or whoever is starting at SF, he may be worth grabbing. George would give the Warriors another player that has the ability to play multiple positions and excel in a run-and-gun system. He will have to be beat out Wesley Johnson and Al-Faroqu Aminu, should they be available when the Warriors pick.
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