Tuesday, March 1, 2011

2011 NBA Draft Stock Report: February Edition

Posted by CoHoops DeAnte Mitchell
The countdown towards the 2011 NBA draft has been an interesting one. This years draft shouldn't be very predictable with an up-and-down choice for No. 1 overall.

February provided an look at many players raising their draft stock including two players from well-known programs.

Marshon Brooks will go down in history for his performance against Notre Dame and Jacob Pullen will possibly make history at Kansas State with his scoring ability as of late.

Additionally, the NBA trade deadline provided a big consensus of what teams are looking for the "projects" and players to improve their team.

Many outlets have reported that Cleveland is targeting Duke's Kyrie Irving. His draft stock rose without him playing a game since early December.

Rising draft stock

Harrison Barnes  - North Carolina (February stat line: 17 pts, 6.7 rebs)

Barnes has had an up-and-down season but he's got it together late. The change to put Kendall Marshall in the backcourt opposed to Larry Drew III has helped Barnes progress.

His jump shot definitely could use work but his ability to be clutch late is something that scouts like about Barnes. They also drool over his potential. I've seen Barnes deliver the dagger to many teams this season for North Carolina, but many believe he can do a lot better.

Barnes has been dominant in February and should be a huge asset to an NBA team with his ability to score and get on the glass at 6'7''.

Alec Burks - Colorado (February stat line: 19.1 pts, 8 rebs, 3.4 ast)

Burks is a definite lottery selection. He showed scouts his ability to play defense in February with his game sealing steal against Kansas State's Jacob Pullen and his ability to block shots.

The lanky 6'6'' guard has shown his ability to score from the wing and possesses a NBA ready jump shot.

Burks is a gifted scorer but also an all-around guard who has above-average ball handling skills and could play point guard with help.

Marshon Brooks - Providence (February stat line: 30.1 pts, 6.5 rebs)

Brooks had the most impressive month of anybody in College Basketball. Brooks scored in double-figures in every game in February and also scored 20 points in every game but one.

He also is known for scoring 52 points in a loss against Notre Dame and earlier scoring 43 in a loss to Georgetown.

Brooks, in my opinion, is the most gifted scorer in the country. Not only did he score 30 points per outing in February, but he shot 80-153 (52%) from the field and scored 211 points in one month.

Brooks is an NBA ready shooting guard with a lot of room to improve.

Kenneth Faried - Morehead State (February stat line: 19 pts, 14.2 rebs, 2.5 blks)

Faried broke the all-time NCAA rebounding record set by Tim Duncan and is continuing to create cushion.

Faried is a gifted player in the low post with excellent rebounding skills. He has a non-stop motor which allows him to attack the glass so hard. Faried isn't a great option as far as scoring down low but is steadily improving.

Nonetheless, his defensive ability and rebounding skills is the green light for NBA scouts.

Kyrie Irving - Duke

Kyrie Irving hasn't played a game since early December but that hasn't stopped NBA scouts from targeting the talented guard from Elizabeth, New Jersey.

Earlier this season, Irving was a man amongst boys. His loss has been felt on this Duke squad who has dropped three on the season.

Irving is a huge impact player that can turn a team around.

He is a point guard in every sense of the word and his ball handling skills allow him to get in the paint at will.

Duke's medical staff has done a good job of letting Irving fully heal and once healthy, Irving should be a huge addition to a NBA franchise if he decides to forgo his final three years of eligibility.

Norris Cole - Cleveland State (February stat line: 26 pts, 7.7 rebs, 6.3 ast)

Cole had the most impressive stat line in all of College Basketball in the past 15 years. Cole embraced a 40-20 game, the only other player to do that in 15 years was NBA star Blake Griffin.

Cole has the ability to fill it up but get his teammates involved. Cole has a great basketball IQ and great vision and passing skills.

He has a NBA ready jump shot with room to improve. He'll be the steal of the draft when it's all said and done. Underrated point guard at the next level.

Falling draft stock

Josh Selby - Kansas (February stat line: 6.8 pts, 2.8 ast)

Selby has been the complete opposite of what Kansas expected this season. Selby had huge shoes to fill, and outside of his two first games, Selby hasn't shown up.

Selby has been a non-factor for Kansas and has all but fell out of the lottery draft as of now. Although, I do believe if he was to come out, Selby could still be a first round pick with help to his jump shot.

Durrell Summers - Michigan State (February stat line: 5.5 pts, 2.5 rebs)

Summers has a season to forget. In February, Summers didn't score in double figures once. Not to mention, the 6'5'' guard was held scoreless in a must-win game against Ohio State.

His inconsistent play has played a huge role in Michigan State's down season. Summers has been exposed as one-dimensional on offense and that has affected his draft stock tremendously.

Summers will need to put up solid numbers consistently to win back over the NBA scouts.

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