Laker Scouting Reports

Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby karacha on Sun Sep 20, 2009 7:54 am

I also agree with therealdeal. Gelabale is talented and cheap. Wants to play D. This is someone we can use at both SG and SF, especially if Sasha continues to suck.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Amain on Sun Sep 20, 2009 8:31 am

I am irritated by Luke, Sasha & Jordan. You expect mediocrity from Mbenga because he isn't that talented but these guys seem to end every season indifferently, I don't think they understand how fortunate they are, similar players just seem to be nomadic bench warmers/role players, who never find a place to settle and improve.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby kray28 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:40 am

Fisher is annually a terrible fisher around the basket


I lol'ed.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby kray28 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:43 am

If Gelabale works out....we'll need to dump some deadweight, any suggestions?
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Vincey on Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:56 am

therealdeal wrote:Thanks for the report on Gelabale. Although I tend to disagree about whether or not he makes the team. Keep in mind this guy was a starter before his injury, and he (like Trevor, Shannon and now Artest) has said that his focus is defense when coming to LA. He seems to fit the mold of the last two role players the Lakers have made great use of in Shannon and Trevor. I hope he does make the squad and can show that decent three point shot.

If he can show improvement at the three and a pension for defense, he could edge out Sasha for a spot on the team. Especially if Sasha continues to struggle.

When it comes down to it, at the very least : He's cheap, he would be a decent pickup against injuries and he seems to have the willingness to push meaning others would have to step up as well.

What is Mitch's plans for how many LA keeps on the roster?

If the plan is to keep 13 then Jelly has a slim shot at making it.

Which team would trade for Sasha right now?
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby therealdeal on Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:30 am

Vincey wrote:
therealdeal wrote:Thanks for the report on Gelabale. Although I tend to disagree about whether or not he makes the team. Keep in mind this guy was a starter before his injury, and he (like Trevor, Shannon and now Artest) has said that his focus is defense when coming to LA. He seems to fit the mold of the last two role players the Lakers have made great use of in Shannon and Trevor. I hope he does make the squad and can show that decent three point shot.

If he can show improvement at the three and a pension for defense, he could edge out Sasha for a spot on the team. Especially if Sasha continues to struggle.

When it comes down to it, at the very least : He's cheap, he would be a decent pickup against injuries and he seems to have the willingness to push meaning others would have to step up as well.

What is Mitch's plans for how many LA keeps on the roster?

If the plan is to keep 13 then Jelly has a slim shot at making it.

Which team would trade for Sasha right now?


I'm not sure about the roster situation, but things can change if a player makes himself an asset. I would guess they'd like to keep a couple roster spots open for emergencies, but that's just a guess.

there are plenty of teams that would take Sasha Vujacic. He may not be the absolute best shooter, but he's still a good shooter comparatively throughout the league. Off the top of my head : Phoenix. Package Farmar/ Morrison or Morrison/ Vujacic or Vujacic/Farmar for someone. In a run and gun system, Sasha would absolutely thrive.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby karacha on Sun Sep 20, 2009 12:08 pm

kray28 wrote:If Gelabale works out....we'll need to dump some deadweight, any suggestions?


Farmar, Ammo and Sasha are all perfect candidates. Not to mention they are all playing in the "wrong" system anyway. They should run and chuck shots, and they'd probably be good at it.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Vincey on Sun Sep 20, 2009 1:09 pm

There are plenty of teams that would take Sasha? Oh really?

Good luck finding a trading partner with that horrible contract Mitch
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby therealdeal on Sun Sep 20, 2009 1:21 pm

Vincey wrote:There are plenty of teams that would take Sasha? Oh really?

Good luck finding a trading partner with that horrible contract Mitch


:man10:

5 million for 2 years? What a horrible contract. MLE money for two seasons for a shooter with championship experience.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby karacha on Sun Sep 20, 2009 1:55 pm

Vincey wrote:...with that horrible contract Mitch


He only has 2 years, it's a very good contract.

You were probably thinking about Luke Walton.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Vincey on Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:05 pm

No I wasn't thinking about Luke.

5 million a year for Sasha is terrible.

Next year he should be valuable as an expiring.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby therealdeal on Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:20 pm

Vincey wrote:No I wasn't thinking about Luke.

5 million a year for Sasha is terrible.

Next year he should be valuable as an expiring.


5 million a year for Sasha is not even close to horrible. Even the way he is struggling from the field, by any other team's standards he's still a good shooter and still demands respect from the 3 point line. A player like Sasha helps to keep pressure off of post players, making him very valuable. Even if he doesn't make a basket the respect he commands helps.

Five million for Sasha Vujacic isn't the best deal, but it's far from terrible.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby karacha on Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:55 pm

Vincey wrote:No I wasn't thinking about Luke.

5 million a year for Sasha is terrible.

Next year he should be valuable as an expiring.


It's not about the amount, except the amount is, say, over $10M. It's all about contract length. Some teams could use a shooter, and in the worst case, they'd be renting him for one season, and if it doesn't work out, they end up with an expiring.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Kobe Bryant 8 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 3:35 pm

Sasha was deemed horrible for his 36% 3PT shooting. That's still respectable. He had a bad year, but you CANNOT say it's from a lack of effort. Aside from Kobe I don't think anymore cares more than Sasha.

He'll be back and I'll laugh at everyone who brought him down to Luke's level on this team (which I still don't get).
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby thkthebest on Sun Sep 20, 2009 4:03 pm

Imo, he didn't have a bad year. He had a normal year. His contract year was the obvious odd year during his whole career. I hope he brings that type of shooting back again.

Anyway, his contract isn't really bad for us, but it's "bad" in the sense that many teams are looking to shed salary for the 09-10 season. It'll be hard to find someone to take on his contract when about half the league is waiting for the LeBron, Bosh, Wade, etc. free agents. For contenders who are willing to take on salary, they might want Sasha, but they wouldn't want to deal with the Lakers.

Thanks for the breakdown rydjorker121. I honestly didn't know much about this player.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Kobe Bryant 8 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 4:06 pm

That's why we should be rooting for him to return to form. He's a Laker at this point. Luke, Sasha, Odom, and Kobe are the only constants since 04-05.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby rydjorker121 on Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:48 pm

Haven't responded for a long time, but looking at the posts, I see some people comparing Gelabale to Trevor Ariza; I wouldn't use that comparison at all. Ariza is a long athletic player who came to us as a slasher and interceptor of passing lanes, and only developed the shot with us to fit within the Triangle. Gelabale is athletic, but he's rarely starting to use it anymore as a result of his injuries--he's more of a jumpshooter, and I think especially quite underrated in the mid-range area. In fact, I think that had the cards fell right for him, Gelabale can be a better player than Sasha is right now...Gelabale really has shows flashes of ability to hit offense from everywhere and has the athleticism, and thus real defense, that Sasha lacks. But it's all about circumstance.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby rydjorker121 on Mon Sep 28, 2009 6:44 pm

Random training camp fodder:

Tony Gaffney (CUT)
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 208
Age: 24
Position: PF/C
College Team: Massachusetts
Years in League: 0
Comments: Posted very good rebounding numbers in his last season of college--in particular a very good defensive rebounder--although his first three seasons of college he rebounded more like a SF, so combined with his lack of height/weight that might make his rebounding not translate that well to the NBA. Defensively he appears to be excellent--he had an the best steal/block combination among all PFs in his last season of college, and has posted good marks in these areas throughout college. Offensively he'll pretty much be useless in the NBA--he's rarely involved in his team's offense, if at all, and his first three years of college he's shown little efficiency in scoring either, with high turnover rates. Also pretty old for a player coming out of college. Extreme tweener--has an SF body but has a PF/C style of game. Will have to make his living on defense and rebounding to cut it, although he appears to be more of a developmental league/Europe type player.



Thomas Kelati (CUT)
Height: 6' 5"
Weight: 200
Age: 27
Position: SG
College Team: Washington State
Years in League: 0
Comments: A scorer who heavily relies on the three point shot--everywhere he's gone, about 2/3rds of his shots are threes; he can certainly stroke it as well, because between college and Europe, his last five years saw him hit at least 39% from three. But between that as his major source of offense and his extremely poor rebounding and passing ability, he's extremely one-dimensional. He can lay low and intercept some passes, but his defense is unexceptional, and he's slightly undersized for the SG slot. Quite old, and has virtually no chance to make the team.



David Monds (CUT)
Height : 6' 8"
Weight: 240
Age: 25
Position: PF
College Team: Oklahoma State
Years in League: 0
Comments: One of the players who stood out in the Lakers' summer league team, so understandably received a camp invite. Was just an average scorer in the D-League, although he's efficient in his scoring; he's also a very good rebounder. A bit foul prone and undersized for his preferred slot at PF, and not much of a shotblocking presence. There's many scoring-oriented power forwards with better scoring rates that haven't cut it in the league, so he has virtually no chance of making the team.



Michael Fey (CUT)
Height: 7' 0"
Weight: 270
Age: 26
Position: C
College Team: UCLA
Years in League: 0
Comments: The worst player, in terms of talent, on the training camp roster; didn't make much of a dent during his stay at UCLA, and in particular, he's a poor rebounder and shotblocker for a player his size. Just a random body to throw out there.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------
D-Fenders Players:

Deron Washington
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 210
Age: 23
Position: SF
College Team: Virginia Tech
Years In League: 0
Comments: Great all-around athlete--laterally quick and vertically explosive (has a 40' inch vert) for a small forward. But a poor offensive player--carries a mediocre scoring rate, but is further impeded by extremely poor perimeter and free throw shooting. Very much prefers to attack the basket, where he shows ability to get to the line. Average rebounder for a SF. Will probably need to carve a defensive niche to make the league--he has shown an ability to get into passing lanes, and he has the requisite quickness/athleticism/height combination to potentially make an impact.

Gabe Pruitt
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 170
Age: 23
Position: SG/ PG
Years in League: 2
Comments: NBA experience plus playing for a top-level team in the Celtics might garner him more looks than most. Good all-around athlete--gets off the ground and shows good quickness, and can potentially be a good perimeter defender in the league, as he also displays quick hands. A combo guard who actually displays some potential in terms of passing ability, but very much prefers to shoot the ball--a preferred three point shooter. The problem is he's not a particularly good shooter--despite his insistence on the three pointer, he's an average long-range shooter, at best, and has struggled to shoot at the NBA level. Doesn't apply his athleticism enough--doesn't rebound well or get to the free throw line well. Shot selection and overall decision-making in the framework of his game is a definite concern--straying away from potential strengths and crafting himself into a one-dimensional offensive player who hasn't refined that one trick yet, is really undermining his career. Has had drunken-driving incidents while as a member of the Celtics, probably leading to his being waived there. He's still young enough that he still has good potential, with his good all-around athleticism combined with some potential skills in passing and shooting ability, but he hasn't put it all together and strays away from his strengths. At the same time, tweener combo guards are also the most common players to attain in the league, so if he doesn't get his play together he will be easily overlooked.

Joe Crawford
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 210
Age: 23
Position: SG
Years in League: 1
Comments: The Lakers' draft pick returns to the Lakers' farm team after a short stint with the Knicks. Very average athlete, with a short wingspan and average speed, which doesn't do his build (6'4" SG) any favors at all. It is further verified by his athletic markers--he's a poor rebounder for a SG, doesn't get to the line particularly well, and is absolutely pathetic at getting in passing lanes. Was a competent scorer in college by virtue of his mid-range game, and while he relied fairly heavily on the three point shot, has never shot it that well at the college level, so while it should be a part of his arsenal in the NBA, he can't really make a living off of it either. Skillwise, he also has poor court vision. Lacks a real asset he can bring to the NBA level in terms of skills, and together with his fairly poor build he doesn't have a great chance of making back an NBA roster, much less contributing there.

Longar Longar
Height: 6' 11"
Weight: 228
Age: 26
Position: C
Years in League: 0
Comments: An athlete for the center position, but held down by a lack of strength and poor conditioning. In addition, doesn't translate his athletic abilities defensively--he's a poor to average rebounder, at best, and a fairly poor shotblocker. Offensively, he's an okay scorer but is really held back by a lack of scoring efficiency, both in terms of shooting and getting to the free throw line. Likewise, he's unselfish, but has poor handles. At his age, combined with a lack of a standout asset on either end, he's just fodder for the D-League team.

Dar Tucker
Height: 6' 4"
Weight: 210
Age: 21
Position: SG
Years in League: 0
Comments: A volume scorer--possesses great scoring instincts and can launch off tons of shots without turning the ball over. Looks to score from all over the court as well, and has the strength to be a very reasonable rebounder for someone his size. His problems are two-fold; he's not a good shooter at all, really struggling from long range, and his free throw shooting verifies what could be an average, at best, mid-range shot. A volume player, so he also appears to abuse his shot selection. Secondly, he never looks to pass the ball, always looking to score for himself, with his very inefficient scoring tools. So while he has some defensive potential due to his strong build and reasonably quick hands, he'll need to rectify his decision-making and shot on offense to make it as a role player. At 6'4" with limited passing ability he'll have to really become strong defensively in particular to offset his shooting woes; he's young enough to improve, but at the same time he has a long hurdle to face.

Ryan Forehan-Kelly
Height: 6' 6"
Weight: 195
Age: 29
Position: SG
Years in League: 0
Comments: Good shooter who displays some edges in his game--can pass the ball fairly well for a shooting guard without turning the ball over, and has quick hands in intercepting passes defensively. Offensively, largely a jumpshooter, but he displays both a proficient mid-range and three-point shooting game. Fundamentally sound player, with good height for the position. Doesn't get to the line very much, but what's probably holding him back the most is his age--he's nearing 30, and with the league geared towards younger players as training camp invitees, that alone might hinder his chances of joining the league.

Diamon Simpson
Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 230
Age: 22
Position: PF
Years in League: 0
Comments: Extremely prolific rebounder for someone his size, particularly on the defensive glass. That, combined with his ability to rack up steals and blocks, made him very impressive defensively at the college level, made even moreso because of he doesn't pick up fouls. A very ordinary scorer in the NBA, at best--carries an average scoring rate, with average at best scoring efficiency, and while he's an absolute foul magnet, his jumper is in massive need of work as evidenced by his paltry free throw shooting. He's really a couple of inches too short to play PF in the NBA, and it's hard to see the rebounding and shotblocking translate that well to the league; in addition, he'll need to hone his jumper since he won't be able to play inside as much, and try to develop as a SF. There are many tweener forwards of his ilk, and more than likely he's a good college player that won't have his abilities translate well to the league.

Earl Barron (TRADED AWAY)
Height: 7' 0"
Weight: 245
Age: 28
Position: C
Years in League: 3
Comments: Veteran big man. Tall, but suffers from serious holes in his game with regards to being a center--he's a poor rebounder and shotblocker for the position, and his free throw rate has all but evaporated from past years as he's become more of a jumpshooting center. Also very foul prone, so defensively he doesn't bring much to the table. Offensively, has shown ability to shoot well at the past and can hit free throws, but more recent numbers have started to paint him as becoming a poor offensive player. Has some turnover issues, and poor handles. Really lacks a bread-and-butter at this point, not being terribly effective at either end of the court, and is largely just a big body.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby karacha on Mon Sep 28, 2009 7:01 pm

rydjorker121 wrote:Haven't responded for a long time, but looking at the posts, I see some people comparing Gelabale to Trevor Ariza; I wouldn't use that comparison at all. Ariza is....


I did not have to quote the whole thing; just wanted to say I mostly agree. I mean... alright, there may be some similarities between Ariza and Gelabale, but JellyBelly is a better shooter and less of a slasher. Which, in the triangle might be a good thing. I think he could be as good as Ariza with some luck and no more injuries. He's another one of those good role-players we find from time to time with the potential to make an impact off the bench. For him this is perfect timing.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby 10scott10 on Mon Sep 28, 2009 7:04 pm

karacha wrote:
rydjorker121 wrote:Haven't responded for a long time, but looking at the posts, I see some people comparing Gelabale to Trevor Ariza; I wouldn't use that comparison at all. Ariza is....


I did not have to quote the whole thing; just wanted to say I mostly agree. I mean... alright, there may be some similarities between Ariza and Gelabale, but JellyBelly is a better shooter and less of a slasher. Which, in the triangle might be a good thing. I think he could be as good as Ariza with some luck and no more injuries. He's another one of those good role-players we find from time to time with the potential to make an impact off the bench. For him this is perfect timing.

In the triangle slashers are just as, if not more, important than shooters. the triangle not only creates open shots on the perimeter, but if you are doing it right should leave a lot of space wide open near the basket for slashers to get easy baskets. A good mixture of both is really needed for the offense to run well, other wise the defense will pack it in or just guard the perimeter
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Vincey on Sun Oct 11, 2009 6:23 pm

LMAO, Gelebale had no shot at "edging out Sasha for a spot". SMH
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby rydjorker121 on Mon Oct 12, 2009 10:37 pm

^^^
Sasha has a 2-year contract with the mid-level left, and with how he played last year it would be hard to trade him. Although Charlotte and Memphis have made a reputation of alleviating some of our burdens (Kwame, Radmanovic), so maybe call them again? I do agree with the idea that if Sasha doesn't regain his shot, Gelabale might be better than Sasha talentwise--although post-injury I'm just not sure about the guy. We just cut JellyBelly anyway, so Laker brass must think that his injury's really hindering him his game.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby Vincey on Fri Oct 16, 2009 8:27 am

rydjorker121 wrote:^^^
Sasha has a 2-year contract with the mid-level left, and with how he played last year it would be hard to trade him. Although Charlotte and Memphis have made a reputation of alleviating some of our burdens (Kwame, Radmanovic), so maybe call them again? I do agree with the idea that if Sasha doesn't regain his shot, Gelabale might be better than Sasha talentwise--although post-injury I'm just not sure about the guy. We just cut JellyBelly anyway, so Laker brass must think that his injury's really hindering him his game.

That's exactly what I said when the notion of "Gelabale could edge out Sasha for a roster spot" came up, it would be very difficult to trade Sasha. Apparently others think there are plenty of teams that want him LOL.

Gelabale was simply not the right fit for LA whether or not he's "better" than Sasha [which is highly debatable, as much as I hate Sasha]. For their roles, Sasha is the better option for sure. Gelabale belongs in a more wide open offensive system where the team isn't loaded with offensive superstars who need the ball.

Lastly I'll go ahead and say that Gelabale looks like he doesn't belong in the league anyway.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby deal on Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:27 am

John3:16 wrote:
KB24@CL wrote::bow: :bow: :bow:

as always, spot on.
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Re: Laker Scouting Reports

Postby rydjorker121 on Fri Jun 25, 2010 3:37 pm

Devin Ebanks
Position: SF
Height: 6-8
Weight: 208
Age: 20
Contract: $473,604 ('10-'11) (non-guaranteed); $736,420 ('11-'12)
Nickname: N/A
Years with Team: 0 (as of yet)
Years with League: 0
Previous Teams: N/A
Acquired: 2010 Draft Round 2 (#43)
Spoiler:
Strengths: Looks the part of the NBA SF (height+length), Good offensive rebounder, Plays good positional defense, Improving mid-range jumper
Weaknesses: Super passive offensively, lacks range, subpar finisher, atrocious passer/ballhandler, atrocious defensive rebounder, questionable team defense, starting to lack in defensive playmaking


Ebanks has only played garbage time minutes this year, but we can still draw conclusions as he's played about twenty games:

Defensively, Ebanks has played very well this year, and had those minutes been meaningful and not against fellow garbage time players, Ebanks would have ranked among the top of all Lakers in defending 3-9 foot shots, mid-range shots, corner threes and above the break threes. On top of that, he's been an good defensive rebounder (20th out of 70 small forwards), although he's really receded in defensive playmaking (68th), with poor stealing (64th) and shotblocking (67th), and has become increasingly foul prone (66th). In the aggregate, there's a place for Ebanks' ability to play defense and rebound well, so it's good to see he's more substance over style on this end, but if his ability to play defense (which may or may not be a fluke) means racking up fouls, it puts a question on the amount of minutes he can play.

Offensively, this year Ebanks has been a high usage (17th of 70 SFs) creator whose shots are pretty much never assisted as far as small forwards go, and he paricularly likes to shoot mid-range jumpers (15th out of 70 SFs) and 10-15 foot jumpers (23rd). The problem is that these aren't winning shots for him: while Ebanks is a cut below average in hitting mid-range jumpers, he's absolutely awful from 10-15 feet in conversion (60th). The problem is that Ebanks doesn't take too many value shots (threes and at-rim shots) but it's understandable given that they're the worst parts of his offensive repertoire. He doesn't attack the rim much (40th), and usually only does so through good offensive rebounding (21st), but even then he struggles to draw fouls (47th), and finishes worse (62nd). He also take many threes (40th) and again can't hit them (53rd). In addition, Ebanks is a poor passer (51st of 70 SFs) and an awful ballhandler. So Ebanks' offense is ultimately a wreck: he utilizes his high usage for mid-range shots which he's awful to slightly below average in hitting, and he has zero ballhandling ability and cannot really see the floor. There's very little to work with here.

Ebanks really needs to put his defensive rebounding and overall defense to the forefront, because those are the attributes where he's a net positive and can extend his longevity in the league. But even then, he needs to really cut down his fouls, but even then, his complete lack of any useful offensive attribute might still grant a ticket out of the league. If he really works at it, his high end upside is Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, but his work ethic has always been questioned, which is why he's been banished to the bench for the longest time.

Spoiler:
It's hard to call Ebanks a "disappointment" after two years in the league, particularly given that 1) he was given garbage time minutes in his rookie year, and 2) given that he was the recipient of inconsistent minutes this year, given that Mike Brown was tinkering with his rotation. But looking deeper into standout characteristics of his game this season, it's hard not to come away disappointed.

Let's recap what Ebanks was expected to be based on his college work, and based on what was actually some strong stats during garbage time last year: my expectation, as seen in the spoilers below, was that Ebanks would severely lack scoring ability due to passivity and his own lack of range, but I thought he would be a good rebounder, passer, and would play defense very well. In his rookie year, his game more or less conformed to that, really playing off the ball extremely well--he had an insane offensive rebound rate (yes, limited sample space) and most of his shot attempts were assisted and around the basket. He didn't particularly finish well, but he had a high free throw rate to offset that and got a lot of AND-1 type plays. With his lack of range and shoddy shooting/poor finishing he wasn't efficient on offense, overall, though. Moreover, he made a fair share of defensive plays, in particular being a good shotblocker with his length. However, he also showcased quite a few red flags--(1) his passing, which was expected to be decent, was absolutely atrocious, (2) his jumper, as expected, was poor--he shot very poorly from mid-range on a regular amount of attempts, and (3) he eschewed threes, as expected, lacking the range. So in his rookie year, he exceeded expectations by being a viable off-the-ball finisher and hustle/defensive player, and while the volume with which he did that in garbage time was a fluke, it looked like he could find a role as a role player. He was very productive within his realm of work, and maximized his role player defensive/hustle attributes at garbage time.

Then came this year: again, minutes were sporadic, but there were times (particularly in April) where Ebanks got playing time, and there's enough of a sample space to make preliminary assessments. And this is where the preliminary scouting report gained further truth: Ebanks was just passive this year. Very passive, particularly on offense. He had the 8th lowest usage rate among qualifying SFs this year, but exacerbated things by having the 6th worst TS% among such SFs. So in other words, the Lakers were playing 4-on-5 when he was on the court: he was both super passive, but the thing is, you probably want him to be passive, given that he's even worse when launching a shot off. The only other SFs around that TS-low usage rate ballpark are Dominic McGuire, Chris Singleton and Damien Wilkins--the last two guys are on their way out of the league, and McGuire has a ton of redeeming qualities--he can really pass the ball and rebound super effectively for his height, and even then he's considered just a bit player. Ebanks is not even close in terms of pure point rating--he had the 9th worst assist rate this year (and the worst assist rate last year had he qualified, so this isn't a fluke) and the 7th highest turnover rate this year. So let's recap Ebanks: he has a a bottom 10 usage rate, TS%, assist rate, and a top ten turnover rate. Even Singleton and Wilkins, two guys on their way out, had far better looking pure point ratings, so at least they have that redeeming quality. Ebanks strikes out on all four counts, and just looks like a wreck offensively. As mentioned, the Lakers were playing four-on-five, since he had not even an average quality on offense.

The thing about Ebanks was that it was hard to notice he was playing so atrociously on offense, just like Troy Murphy and Jason Kapono, because of his low usage rate which made him more invisible than blatantly causing miscues. Also, he looked like he was trying hard: for instance, continuing a trend of very good offensive rebounding, he was sixth in offensive rebound rate among SFs. Moreover, even though he was still finishing at a subpar rate, he was still drawing fouls. Also, it looked like his mid-range jumper had improved--he hit 41% of his mid-rangers on a standard number of SF attempts, so he gave the impression of a mid-range in hustling type SF. Also, with Mike Brown giving him incredibly sporadic minutes, it was hard to see his play consistently, so Lakers fans were unable to draw too many determinate conclusions about him. But, the incredible passivity on offense combined with overall shoddy shooting (mid-range shots are the most overrated aspect of the game) and horrible ball skills in general made him a bottom-five player on offense this year. To illustrate the passivity, he had 5 dunks in 5.8 minutes per game in his rookie year--he had all of four dunks in 16.8 minutes per game this year. He stopped dunking. His hustling game and improving shot are pluses, but the other flaws more than override that. On a purely offensive standpoint, he's easily out-of-the-league material--you could easily get more from a D-Leaguer in a 10-day contract.

On defense, Ebanks also regressed: he made far fewer defensive plays in both steals and blocks, picked up a few more fouls (although he's not foul prone), and continued a trend of questionable team defense (he's been in the negative in team impact for the past two years). Most incriminating, however, is that as a 6'8" inside-hustle player, he had the worst defensive rebound rate among all SFs this year. Incredible--I mean that in a bad way. Even Shane Battier, who spent 99% of the time camping at the three point line this year, had a slightly higher def reb rate. Ebanks is a way better offensive rebounder than defensive rebounder to be sure, but his rebound rate was good at college, so it makes you wonder if he's not physically tough enough (he has a thin frame) to box out well enough. Ebanks does good positional defense against SFs, a continuing trend based on rookie data, but with his complete and utter lack of offense playing "good" instead of "complete lockdown" defense won't get it done--he's still hemorrhaging more points overall by being on the floor. Couple that with his league-worst defensive rebounding, more lax defensive playmaking and questionable team defense, he has more than enough holes to make him be only an average defender, at best, in this league. The Lakers try to fashion him as their "defensive" guy due to his height and length, but the reality is he's only average at best.

The thing with Ebanks is that age, potential, and being homegrown have a way of making teams overrate their own players. Ebanks is arguably overrated by the Lakers on both offense AND defense, and if they keep him (he's a RFA), they'll keep thinking that he can grow better on both sides of the court until age 25, when they realize that he's a poor player because he "hasn't improved much", and then let him go or trade him as a side piece or for a future pick. That's the lifeblood of the NBA--teams hurt themselves this way, and it would do the Lakers well to realize it ahead of time.

Ebanks works hard with o-boards, is improving his mid-range jumper, plays good positional defense, and looks the part as the en-vogue long/lanky swingman--but everything else, VIRTUALLY everything else, is a negative. He is very flawed on both ends that even reaching my initial expectations of Tayshaun Prince (from his college production) seems lofty. In retrospect, it's starting to seem reasonable, rather than a steal, that he was drafted with the 41st pick. He's more than overstretched as a starter (as the Lakers have used him several times) and Mike Brown seems right to actually put him on the bench the majority of the time behind Matt Barnes and Metta World Peace.

[spoiler]Strengths: Ability to play contain defense effectively without fouling, Height/length combination, Rebounding ability on both ends, Competitiveness/hustling ability/defensive IQ, Court vision
Weaknesses: Ability to score, Poor jumper/range, Passive offensively/limited handles, Not a great athlete (lateral quickness/speed/vertical), Needs to add strength

Offense: Ebanks’ offense is projected to be poor at the NBA level on several fronts: 1) he’s passive (his usage rate is on the low side for a SF), and his handles are questionable despite that (he possesses a middling to high turnover rate), 2) his scoring rate is extremely poor, and 3) perhaps his greatest impediment, he lacks a consistent source of offense with which he can score off of, and lacks range. As comprised his offensive game is not NBA-caliber and most likely has led into his slippage into the second round, because between the lack of handles, passivity on offense and poor scoring methods, it will be difficult for him to overcome all of these and make himself into a viable offensive player. Ebanks’ primary method of offense consists of mid-range in: he launches quite a lot of mid-range jumpers and accrues quite a few inside shots as well by playing off the ball or through offensive rebounds. However, he’s not terribly effective at either so far: he’s a poor mid-range shooter, although given his decent free throw percentage (74%) and desire to launch off mid-rangers, he should improve here. Ebanks is also just an okay finisher around the basket, and part of the problem is his physical tools in general: he rated poorly in leaping ability, lateral quickness and doesn’t possess much in way of strength, and this is further verified by his paltry dunk rate and tip-in rate (despite his very good offensive rebounding ability): considering the NBA is comprised of elite athletes at the swing positions, this might even look worse at the next level. Ebanks sorely lacks range; he rarely took college three pointers, and when he did, he shot extremely poorly on them: he most likely will lack NBA three point range at the next level. However, it’s not all bad for Ebanks on this end of the court: he has slightly above average offensive instincts (WVU actually scored more when he was on the court), gets to the line at a slightly above average rate, and a nice little wrinkle to his game is that he’s a very good passer for a small forward, despite his lack of handles: he certainly has court vision. Overall, Ebanks does have IQ and passing ability in the offensive end, hustles well, and carries a slight foundation of an offensive game mid-range in, but he’s lagging behind in terms of range, ballhandling, and ability to score off his own devices, and thus often lapses into passivity.

Defense: This is where Ebanks is make his money at the NBA level. Ebanks carries above-average impact on the defensive end (WVU allowed 5.9 fewer points with him on the court last year), and acts as a contain/prevent defender: he doesn’t gamble much, sticks with his own man, and hounds his man off-the-ball extremely well to prevent him from receiving the ball. He has high defensive IQ and possesses a desire to act as a defensive stopper: what also helps him is that he’s long and has a standing reach similar to a NBA PF, so his height in combination with his length can be imposing to some offensive players. He appears to be more of a “length defender with smarts” a la Tayshaun Prince and Shane Battier: his intercepting ability leaves something to be desired, but he’s an above average shotblocker and plays good team defense. However, his lack of physical tools, as mentioned above with his suspect lateral quickness, overall speed, and lack of leaping ability/strength, might hinder him here against some matchups: he can be taken off the dribble against smaller guards, and more physical players can push him down on the blocks. However, his impact is palpable, and he can play a step off smaller players and use his length instead, while his length/height may act as a deterrent against bigger players. Ebanks also has a nose for the ball, and uses his length well, as he’s a very good defensive rebounder and overall rebounder. What probably is most impressive about Ebanks is, in spite of his defense and hustle play, he does it all without fouling and stays on the court for a long time (30+ minutes a game, both seasons at WVU). He has massive potential to be a “disciplined defender”—one with decent, but not great, physical tools, but one who relies more on instincts, competitiveness through contain defense.

Intangibles: Ebanks is incredibly competitive and works extremely hard, if that was not expressed already in his offensive rebounding/overall rebounding ability and his defensive acumen. He has the makings of a very disciplined player especially for his age, a style of player that’s becoming increasingly rare particularly with someone of his height and length. On offense he’s highly unselfish as well and can make his teammates better with his court vision. Overall he has strong intangibles and can develop as an ultimate team player. Of note, however, was that he faced a three-game suspension at the beginning of WVU’s season, although it was reportedly for academic reasons.

Future: Ebanks possesses Triangle-conducive skills (passing, height) in addition to elements that fit well with the Lakers, namely his defense and youthful hustle play. In addition, the Lakers most likely will have open roster spots this summer and can certainly use an infusion of youth, particularly on the defensive end. Laker GM Mitch Kupchak has already expressed concern about Luke Walton’s back and considers Ebanks a steal for his draft position, and has said that he might spot minutes behind Ron Artest, so there’s an extremely great chance Ebanks makes the final roster.

Projection: Of note is that Ebanks was once dubbed as a lottery pick, but after his sophomore year where he made little progression offensively, his stock fell like a rock. Unlike many first rounders, he’s not an incredible shooter nor is he an incredible athlete, but he’s incredibly competitive, possesses length and very good defensive instincts, and can develop as an interesting cog player particularly when taking into account his rebounding and passing ability. In the Triangle, Ebanks will need to make his jumper, namely his mid-range jumper, respectable enough, which is possible as delineated above; he most likely won’t be much of a scorer early on as he’s developing this shot, or even much of one at his peak. If he makes the team, he probably would not see too many minutes, barring any free agent signings, trades, or if Luke Walton gets injured, but he’s a great player for the Lakers to develop for the future.


Stats 09-10 (WVU): 34.1min 12.0pts (.457 FG%, .100 3FG%, .770 FT%) 8.1reb 2.4ast 1.1stl 0.7 blk 2.2TO
[/spoiler]

Last edited by rydjorker121 on Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:49 am, edited 5 times in total.
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