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2012 NBA Draft: Evaluating the Point Guards

June 26, 2012
INDIANA SPORTS PAGE



Damian Lillard

Strength: Pick-and-roll decision making

Lillard is a top prospect based on his ability to create scoring opportunities. He averaged 24.5 points per game, including 40.9 percent shooting from behind the 3-point line. I think his most impressive asset is his ability to read the defense in pick-and-roll situations, generally making the right call between attacking the basket or setting up a teammate. According to Synergy Sports, Lillard posted a PPP of 1.039 when looking to score himself, placing him in the 91st percentile. If you account for his passes out of pick-and-rolls, Lillard's PPP remains high at 1.083 (87th percentile). The fact that there is so little drop-off between to the two stats confirms his strong decision-making skills.

 

Lillard likes to play off of ball screens that allow him to create space for his jump shot, which he does 61.3 percent of the time when he actually uses a screen. He ranked in the top 10 of jump shots off the dribble in terms of PPP. If the defense goes under the screen or switches, Lillard will pull up behind it. This forces the defense to go over his ball screens, but this still puts them at a disadvantage given Lillard's shooting skills. If he cannot get his shot, he is a willing passer with a natural feel for it.

READ MORE: http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-triangle/post/_/id/30610/2012-nba-draft-evaluating-the-point-guards


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