Seven video games into his NBA profession, and Scottie Barnes has already emerged because the frontrunner for the Rookie of the Yr Award (or at the very least I believe he has), however even with that type of operating begin off the beginning blocks, he nonetheless has an extended technique to go. In my debut article with Raptors Republic, we are going to establish six gamers all through NBA historical past that Barnes already bears some resemblance to — and into whom he might develop.
Scottie Barnes is just not sufficiently old to order a vodka cranberry on highway journeys, but he’s already proven the flexibility to explode performs on the level of assault, acknowledge high-level passing reads, knock down off-the-dribble jumpers, and execute silky clean strikes on his technique to the rim. And this was simply in a single sport!
The long run is vivid for The 6ix’s most up-to-date lottery choose, and if he performs his playing cards proper, there’s an actual probability he matures into an All-NBA participant sometime, however that’s if he performs his playing cards proper. To try this, he’s going to want to turn into a scholar of the sport and its historical past. He’ll must survey its 75-year panorama searching for gamers with skillsets and archetypes much like his, fusing the powers of these he finds to turn into a multi-faceted basketball Chimera.
That seems like an arduous, time-consuming endeavor. Nicely, fortunately for him, I’ve already executed the leg work. Listed here are six gamers I believe Scottie Barnes ought to be going again and watching some tape on.
Let’s get the obvious one out of the best way. Throughout my analysis for this text, I learn numerous scouting stories that listed Draymond Inexperienced because the participant most similar to the Florida State Ahead. I can see the parallels to some extent (the passing, excessive motor, and defensive versatility), however Barnes reaching heights much like a borderline top-75 participant all-time could be (in all probability) his finest developmental final result. Nonetheless although, there are numerous completely different Inexperienced entrees that Scottie can add as staples in his eating regimen.
There’s that preternatural intuition of his to seize and go on misses.
We’re already seeing a few of this from Barnes early on.
Barnes would additionally do effectively to emulate a few of Inexperienced’s main playmaking talents. We’ve witnessed Barnes make a handful of reads as a secondary/tertiary facilitator, however having the ability to orchestrate the offense because the lead conductor would go an extended technique to elevating his offensive ceiling.
Lastly, we should point out The Dancing Bear’s box-outs on bigger guys, as his proficiency there is likely one of the major causes the Warriors can discipline a high-level protection with him on the 5.
Barnes already has a few of Inexperienced’s chops in transition, however for him to turn into his finest self, he might stand so as to add extra half-court tasks on each side of the ball. Initiation and heart protection are two methods to raise his ceiling.
Regardless of posting greater than league-average True Capturing (+4 rTS%), Barnes has struggled capturing it from downtown to start out the 12 months, pulling down an abysmal 22% of his 1.3 makes an attempt per sport. Lamar Odom wasn’t too significantly better, pulling down 31% of his 2.2 appears to be like per sport for his profession, however he was nonetheless capable of operate as a high-level offensive participant by deploying a robust drive-and-kick sport that allowed him to create high-percentage exterior appears to be like for his teammates.
His aptitude for pressuring the rim additionally allowed him to earn straightforward factors from the charity stripe, which is one other space Barnes during which has had hassle, trying solely 4.9 free throws per 100 possessions. That’s a stable quantity however nonetheless far under Odom in his rookie season.
Even when Barnes by no means turns into an elite shooter, there are methods for him to turn into an elite offensive participant. Studying to turn into much more like Odom might assist, particularly if Barnes turns into an elite off-the-bounce participant, as a passer or to attract contact.
Talking of restricted space regulars, MJ (I’m wondering what number of instances somebody has referred to as him that since 1984) was virtually a grasp at weaponizing his size to increase his strides to a radius that enabled him to waltz his approach into straightforward appears to be like.
This elongation of motion is already one in every of Barnes’ defining traits. Bettering in that space is only a matter of Barnes channeling his extra aggressive nature.
One factor that I’ve observed from watching Barnes thus far this season is that whereas he could also be a splendid transition initiator, he nonetheless must work on attacking the rim as a finisher on the break. This was no drawback for the hyper-athletic Marques Johnson, as we see on this clip proper right here.
It’s onerous for a rookie to know when to assault and when to cede the highlight to extra skilled teammates, however as Barnes matures, he must turn into extra aggressive. He has elite size. Growing like Johnson did would assist Barnes flip that size right into a stronger weapon.
If Scottie by no means figures it out as a bounce shooter, to be at his most impactful he in all probability must function his staff’s defensive anchor, because it’s onerous to seek out nice rim guardians who may also successfully house the ground. And since Barnes lacks the dimensions of a conventional large, he’ll want to succeed in sage-levels as a weak-side rim protector. That’s the place AK47 is available in.
Kirilenko averaged center-caliber block percentages for his profession, together with an insane 8.5 % within the 2004-05 season. He wasn’t simply nice at defending the perimeter. He was additionally a formidable defender choosing up guards or forwards on the perimeter on the level of assault (one thing Barnes has been requested to do a lot of in his collegiate and early NBA profession).
Watch right here as Kirilenko twirls round a display screen and goes stride for stride with Stephen Jackson on this possession.
In his Kirilenko video breakdown, Cody Houdek noticed that whereas Kirilenko could haven’t been a robust exterior shooter, he was very keen to tug the set off. I believe it’s important that Barnes rams this tendency into his psyche as even the shakiest of bounce shooters can knock down rhythm jumpers with the correct quantity of confidence (simply ask Jae Crowder).
To this point, Barnes is averaging 1.8 three-point makes an attempt per 100 possessions. Even when he doesn’t turn into extra correct, he might nonetheless assist his staff’s spacing by trying extra. And on the opposite finish, his block share of 1.6 wants to enhance for him to anchor his staff protection.
It has actually been grinding my gears early within the season watching opposing groups try to conceal smaller defenders on Barnes and seeing him not channel his inside bully and take their lunch cash. A part of it is because his teammates aren’t feeding him sufficient in these situations, however most of his incapability to take advantage of these mismatches stems from his lack of a refined post-game. Diaw additionally struggled with this till the 2005-06 season when he confronted his demons head-on, en path to a Most Improved Participant of the Yr Award.
Barnes has a lot size that he can shoot over any small defender. However he’ll be at his simplest if he makes use of his aforementioned strides to maneuver round defenders. Diaw was a grasp submit participant, and Barnes might stand to undertake a few of his expertise.
Bo carved out a decade-and-a-half lengthy NBA profession for himself regardless of not being an amazing bounce shooter or scorer. He completed that feat by turning himself into an indefatigable locomotive. He by no means stopped transferring round on the basketball courtroom, and he used his excessive motor to show himself into an amazing offensive rebounder.
Barnes appears to be like like he’s programmed equally, as he presently sits within the 89th percentile in share of staff discipline objectives transformed into offensive rebounds, per Cleansing the Glass. If the bounce shot by no means does come round, he’ll must proceed this unrelenting nature on the subject of amassing second probability alternatives.
By way of the opposite finish of the ground, Bo Outlaw presently sits at eighth all-time in Basketball-Reference’s Defensive Field Plus-Minus statistic (2.45), and whereas this doesn’t essentially point out he was an all-time stage defender, it does exhibits that he was capable of present an excessive amount of worth on that finish of the ground when he was on the courtroom. He did this primarily by leveraging his size (like lots of the different gamers on this listing) to create chaos for opposing groups.
I had the possibility to meet up with Bo whereas engaged on this text (I initially interviewed him for my mini-series The Quest for the Greatest some time again), and he talked in regards to the significance of getting a whole lot of off-ball reps early on in a single’s basketball life, and the way doing so permits one to develop higher courtroom consciousness and on-ball determination making afterward of their careers. We’ve already seen this come to fruition a bit with Barnes as his time taking part in primarily off-ball on what could have been the best highschool basketball staff ever has turned him into one of many extra cerebral gamers in our league. And I believe his spatial mapping and “really feel” for the sport will solely proceed to enhance the extra he has to function away from the ball in Nick Nurse’s offense.
Barnes has the size, offensive rebounding, and off-ball chops. As his sport develops and in any or the entire instructions laid out right here, he’ll must maintain his motor to stay particular.
Scottie Barnes is already actually freaking good at that sport referred to as basketball, and there’s a puncher’s probability that he surpasses each single one of many six gamers mentioned on this article; however for that to occur, he’d do effectively to check their skillsets religiously, and switch himself into an amalgamate of all their video games.
It’s clearly a giant ask for him to turn into a halfcourt initiator, aggressive driver to attract free throws, a greater submit participant, and to maintain his motor whereas changing into an elite rim protector. However these are solely a number of the instructions during which he might develop. To do all could be unbelievable. However to do any could be an enormous improvement for Barnes. His future thus lies within the sport’s previous.
Tip Mat Issa
Scottie Barnes’ Basketball Examine Information originated on Raptors Republic.