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The Top 10 Shooters In The 2012 NBA Draft

By 06.11.12
Doron Lamb

Doron Lamb (photo. UK Athletics)

Weber State came out of nowhere to surprise a lot of college basketball fans this past season. A lot of their success can be attributed to the nation’s second leading scorer, Damian Lillard. At 6-3, and with a lethal jump shot, it’s no wonder that he’s one of the top rated point guards in the draft. His shooting statistics are off the wall. Last season, he shot 40 percent from behind the arc on 7.1 attempts per game (making 2.9). From the field, he shot 47 percent and added in 89 percent from the free-throw line, where Lillard set up camp with eight attempts per game. His game should translate well to the next level because of his ability to get his shots up within the flow of running an offense. Lillard will definitely be a top-10 pick come draft day.

Basketball fans have been waiting for Harrison Barnes’ arrival to the NBA since the second he suited up in Tar Heel blue. Finally, his time has come. With an automatic mid-range game already in the arsenal, Barnes is set up for a long and prosperous NBA career. At 6-8 he has ideal size for a small forward, and both his footwork and high release on his jumper are a thing of beauty. His collegiate numbers don’t necessarily reflect the impact he had on games, but even a few no-shows in the NCAA Tournament aren’t enough to scare off GMs. Barnes is a lock to be a top-10 pick.

Sometimes lost in the flood of talent outpouring from Kentucky in this year’s draft is Doron Lamb. After two years for the defending national champions, he leaves with a career average of 13.1 points, aided by his 1.8 treys per game. His shooting percentages are what really stick out as he shot 49 percent from the field, an absurd 48 percent from behind the arc, and 81 percent from the free-throw line. Lamb’s role at the next level will be a strict floor spreader. His inability to see the floor along with his lack of size will restrict him from making a major impact. Nonetheless, expect to see Lamb get drafted sometime late in the first round.

Personally, my favorite part about Bradley Beal is his catchy twitter name (@RealDealBeal23), but by no means am I taking anything away from his game. Beal is already an extremely talented shooter and he’ll be turning just 19 years old on draft day. He has the ability to get his jumper off in the blink of an eye and even though he has solid size for a shooting guard at 6-5 with a 6-8 wingspan, he plays well beyond that stature. In his only year at Florida, he averaged almost seven rebounds and just under a block per game. He’s not necessarily a great passer, but he knows what to do with the ball and can be trusted with the rock in his hands. Down the road I see Beal evolving into a James Harden-like role player. He’s a lock to get scooped up in the top 10 on draft day.

In a draft this deep at shooting guard, it’s easy to forget about someone as good as John Jenkins. This past season, he averaged a ridiculous 3.8 threes per game on 44 percent shooting from behind the arc. Despite not even being ranked as a top-5 two guard in this draft, he is by far the purest shooter. Unfortunately for his draft stock, he’s a bit of a one-trick pony. Sure his J is phenomenal, but what happens when an NBA-level defender is on his hip at every moment of the game? Jenkins is going to have to develop more of a slashing game, but if he can succeed at that as well as play enough defense to keep him on the court, he could develop into a wonderful role player. Right now, most mocks have him going late in the first round.

Who do you think are the best shooters in the draft?

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TAGSBradley BealCOLLEGEDAMIAN LILLARDDimeMagDion WaitersDoron LambEVAN FOURNIERHarrison BarnesJeremy LambJohn JenkinsNBA DRAFTTERRENCE ROSSWilliam Buford

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