Dime NBA Draft Profile: Harrison Barnes

By: 06.12.12

Barnes is a high character prospect who can immediately impact the morale of your team. He has the attitude of a player who desires to be great. Coming out of high school, he was the No. 1-ranked recruit, but never really lived up to that standard in college. That motivates him and you can tell he wants to get better. He’s a player that’s willing to sacrifice his own success for team success, as you saw in college. His work ethic and desire to be great will ultimately make him one of the gems in this draft in the long run. Worst comes to worst, he doesn’t really develop his skills offensively and gets buy on his raw abilities.
Grade: 9

Combined Score: 37 out of a possible 50 points

Best Fit: Cleveland Cavaliers
Cleveland has already built a relationship with Harrison Barnes. They don’t really have a small forward with a future over there and Barnes can fill that void. Before he made the decision to go back to school, Cleveland was very close to committing to drafting him. Now with Kyrie Irving already there, it almost seems like an ideal situation. Barnes would be most effective in a situation where he didn’t have to carry the scoring load on his shoulders right away. A couple of years as a catch and shoot threat will help get his confidence up to expand his game a little bit. Kyire Irving has already proven he is capable of creating shots for himself as well as his teammates. Harrison Barnes could play off of Kyrie for a few years, and then emerge as Cleveland’s No. 1 scoring threat in two or three seasons.

“The Cavaliers are very high on the 20-year-old small forward and appear unlikely to let him slip past them at the No. 4 slot in the June 28 draft, according to sources. While this week’s predraft combine in Chicago and subsequent team workouts could always change things, rival executives are planning for Barnes to be off the board by the time the fifth pick (Sacramento) rolls around.

‘He’s a pretty big deal to them,’ one such executive said.

Barnes, a skilled and versatile scorer and a capable defender, would be the sort of two-way threat that coach Byron Scott values. He averaged 17.1 points (on 44 percent shooting from the field and 35.8 percent from three-point range) and 5.2 rebounds as a sophomore, though he shot just 32.8 percent overall and 26 percent from beyond the arc while averaging 14 points in four games during the NCAA tournament. And considering he once announced his decision to attend North Carolina during a nationally televised segment on ESPN in which he picked between six suitors, maybe Barnes is destined for Cleveland.” – Sam Amick, SI.com


How good will Barnes become in the NBA?

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