This Jalen Green NBA Draft Profile is one of the most interesting of the draft class. Green, along with Jonathan Kuminga, spent the last season in the NBA G League. On team Ignite, Green developed alongside talented players from his own high school class, as well as experienced NBA vets like Jarrett Jack. While it is still just a bit early to tell if the gamble paid off or not, Green has been a hyped prospect for quite some time. Let’s break down why NBA scouts are so excited about him as a prospect.
Elite Level Scoring and Athleticism
Jalen Green knows how to get buckets, plain and simple. He became a social media star with his over-the-top highlights, many of which featured him showing off his insane athleticism in some form or fashion. Yes, Green can dunk and put on a show with tricky layups and other moves. He can also score from the mid-range and, although streaky, he can hit shots from three at a respectable level.
In his lone season for the G League Ignite, he was great. He averaged 17.9 points per game along with 4.1 rebounds and 2.8 assists. He isn’t the greatest passer and puts his head down when he should look up at times, but he has the tools to improve and become a threat with the ball. Green’s athleticism is a big part of his elite scoring ability, and it helps him get to the free-throw line where he converts 83% of the time.
Some would like to see his outside shooting improve, but he hit 36.5% of his threes last season while attempting 5.7 per game. He got the volume in for sure, and even without being a 40% shooter, he converts 53% of all his field goals. He is an offensive weapon ready to go in the NBA.
Jalen Green with authority ? pic.twitter.com/tBOTN6PGcD
— Def Pen Hoops (@DefPenHoops) February 19, 2021
His athleticism also allows him to make plays on defense. In the G League, he averaged 1.5 steals per game against experienced professionals. 1.5 steals in college would be impressive, and he did it against pros. He occasionally lands a block here and there due to his vertical. His 8’5″ standing reach gives him a slight edge on guards his size and smaller.
Green is NBA ready so it is hard to get too picky about any of his so-called weaknesses. There is room to grow in the maturity of his game of course, and he could become a better decision-maker for sure. Sometimes he gets his head down and charges ahead when he shouldn’t. However, he has real star potential and you have to live with some mistakes early on as he fully develops.
His streaky shooting can be a concern. He needs to take too many shots sometimes, but in the NBA I don’t think anyone expects him to have the same green light he had in the G League. That is the point of the Ignite team, to develop these young guys before they are officially drafted. As with most prospects coming into the league, he is going to need to add strength and a little mass to bully with the bigger guards at the next level.
NBA Draft Comparison: Bradley Beal
This comparison feels right to me. Although it isn’t perfect, no comparison ever is. Each player is unique in their own ways and plays the game a little differently than every other player. What I see in both Beal and Green’s games are players who can get points for their team. Beal is capable of averaging 30+ points a game and does in fact. Green has the potential to be just as good as Beal, and maybe even better. The athleticism of Green is an added bonus to that natural scorer role that Beal plays.
If Green stops being so streaky from three, this comparison starts to make even more sense. Beal isn’t expected to dish 10 assists per game but is capable at times. I think Green could fit that mold easily as a two-guard/wing player alongside a talented point guard. Green can rebound fairly well for a guard and gets his rebounds like a lot of talented guards tend to do. Sneaky athletic moves and jumping over the top of the crowd while reading shots and trying to capitalize on awkward bounces.