Maryland’s Greivis Vasquez vs. Duke’s Jon Scheyer: Pick the Better NBA Draft Prospect

03.04.10 8 years ago 37 Comments

Last night while watching Duke’s Jon Scheyer and Maryland’s Greivis Vasquez shoot it out in a great game on ESPN, we posed this question to our Twitter followers:

Between Scheyer + Vasquez, who do u think will be a better NBA player? Will either even have an NBA career?

The responses we received were pretty much all either supporting Vasquez or saying that neither one of them will be an NBA player. I think I have to respectfully disagree on both counts. I believe that both of them will at least get some kind of shot at playing in the League, with Vasquez almost certainly having a better chance of getting drafted than Scheyer. In fact, currently has Greivis projected as a first round pick this summer, landing in the 25-30 range. Obviously, draft projections are an inexact science. Prime example: check out our other top NBA Draft resource, Their 2010 mock doesn’t even have Vasquez getting picked at all, but has Scheyer being taken at the end of the second round.

So who is the better prospect? I think that physically, Vasquez has the edge, and will almost certainly test out better than Scheyer at pre-draft workouts. Greivis is an inch taller than Scheyer (6-6 vs. 6-5), is stronger than Scheyer (One of the biggest knocks on Vasquez after he tested the NBA Draft waters last summer was that he wasn’t strong enough; he clearly spent time in the weight room this past offseason), has a longer wingspan than Scheyer, and while Vasquez isn’t a super athlete, will most likely test better than Scheyer in the speed/agility/quickness tests.

In terms of basketball skills though, I still give Scheyer a pretty significant edge. Jon is clearly a better shooter and has made himself into some kind of combo guard hybrid with the nation’s fourth-best assist-to-turnover ratio at 3.06. Whereas Vasquez is streaky shooting the basketball and has a tendency to play out of control at times, Scheyer is a steadying force on the court. When he showed up in Durham, it looked he was going to be a poor man’s J.J. Redick, there to fill the need of a knock-down jump shooter in Coach K’s offense. His game has evolved drastically – partly out of necessity for his team and his own future prospects – to where he can potentially find his way on to an NBA team as a backup guard; a Matt Carroll who can also conceivably run your team’s offense (Don’t laugh at the Matt Carroll comparison. The guy is in his eighth year collecting checks in the NBA).

Whenever I have asked a longtime NBA scout friend of mine is so-and-so can play in the League, his first question is always, “Who can he guard?” For both Scheyer and Vasquez, stack them up against backup 1’s and 2’s in the NBA and ask that same question. Can they both effectively deal with guys like Jeff Teague, Daniel Gibson, J.J. Barea, Luke Ridnour, and Lou Williams? Maybe. You probably have to give the physical edge to Vasquez, but I don’t think there’s a huge gap between the two of them.

So all in all, if I were an NBA GM looking to take a flier on a guy at the end of the draft or considering which undrafted free agents to invite to camp, I would most likely go with Jon Scheyer over Vasquez. To me, erratic wing players are a dime a dozen. Shooters who may also be able to run an offense and not turn the ball over win out for me every time.

What do you think? Who is a better NBA prospect? Will either player make it in the NBA?

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