Draft Express: Paul George

You’ve probably been hearing plenty about Fresno St. sophomore Paul George, whose stock has been shooting up to the point that he’s now a late lottery pick on Draft Express’ Mock Draft after being thought of as a late first-rounder. Now DX has an excellent interview-workout video for your perusal, where you can definitely see where the Tracy McGrady comparisons come from:

It’s a little worrisome that George played mostly zone defense in college and that defense didn’t seem like a priority of his when asked (my impression), but he’s certainly got the tools for a coach to mold into an excellent all-around player. I recommend reading the latest scouting report from DX as well, but before you fall in love with his upside, remember that the Blazers will probably have to trade up into at least the mid-teens to take him at this point. Even if he doesn’t wind up a Blazer, this guy will be on my list of must-see players come Summer League.

UPDATE: I’m just noticing this, but apparently George didn’t do any of the speed or vertical tests as the NBA Draft Combine, doing only the 185-pound bench press, in which he could do four reps. His agent must have held him out of the tests, as George participated fully in the on-court drills.

Topics: Draft Express, Fresno St., Nba Basketball, Nba Draft 2010, Paul George, Portland Trail Blazers, Summer League

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  • Lance

    Great video. I was picking him as a Blazers target a couple weeks back, but then I kind of switched to Sanders more recently. After watching this video, I may have to swing back to him. My reason for my first change was that the draft sites were listing him as a PF and that wasn’t his game, but as a SF (though he thinks he is a #2 guy) he would be a great fit on Portland. I could see a rotation of him and Batum at #3 and him backing up Roy at #2. Can we have them both (he and Sanders)? Wishful thinking.

  • Lance

    I checked him out on draftexpress and they list him at 6’9″ and as a SF. Hoopsworld has him at 6’7″ and as a SF/PF.

    I think the PF is out, but what is his accurate height? 6’7″ is a workable SF in the NBA, but a 6’9″ SF would be a great find.

  • http://ripcityproject.com Coup

    Getting Sanders and George might surprise me more than if KP traded up to No. 3 to get Favors.

    George’s position will probably be determined by who he can defend, which is my greatest question mark with him.

  • http://ripcityproject.com Coup

    The official combine measurements for George were 6-7.75″ without shoes and 6-8.75″ with shoes, so a prototypical SF height.

  • Lance

    I can’t see us trading up to #3 to get Favors. We have some pieces to make it happen, but none that I believe KP will deal.

    I don’t see us adding two first rounders because of their guaranteed contracts unless one would be a famous overseas player…again.

    I don’t see George having the foot speed to stay up with SG’s in this league. I could see him playing wing against SF’s though especially with guys like Oden and Camby backing him up. There is nothing like having legit shotblockers behind you to make you a better defender. Yes, there is always the chance it can make you a bit lazy knowing that you have them behind you, but I can see a guy like Camby reminding him that he isn’t there to cleanup his messes.

  • Lance

    Thanks for the height clarification. I still have mixed feelings on him. I may stick with my Sanders pick again. You never have enough defensive players with length and hops. I have said for years that the best way to build a championship team (w/o the luck of having a Kobe or Wade/Shaq combo) is to build talent at the wings and have a 5 man rotation in the middle with length to shut down the key. Detroit’s last championship team is my working example of that when they had Rasheed (I know), McDyess, Wallace, and players of that stature. There jobs were mainly to guard the paint and give up no second shots. The wings took care of the offense and the bigs cleaned up inside.

    I think Portland is on its way with Roy at one wing, but I still believe the other wing is needed to balance the floor. Batum may be the guy, but he is not yet there. If he could add a drive to his game, look out. I believe he is way ahead of where Pippen was at his age, but the next step forward is the key and the hardest to make. They are fine with Miller at the PG position, but I would like a better backup there (a true PG as backup). With Oden, Camby, Pryz, and LA at the bigs positions, they are close to being that lengthy defensive team IF all can stay healthy which is a huge IF). JP can be the 5th element with his ability to bang and his 6 fouls are expendable. I still would like to see a Theo Radliff type to make people adjust their shots but who don’t need the ball on the offensive side to be happy.

  • Raaaaaaaandy

    no thanks, i can already tell he’s not a good defender by the way he said “yeah…” when asked if he was going to work hard on defense.

    and did he bring his own personal cheerleader to the workout? nice job paul! way to go paul!

  • Lance

    He’s only 20. There are not many defenders at that who can score. Coaches don’t push players like him to defend. He will defend in the NBA or he will have a hard time seeing the court. He has the tools to defend.