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2020 NBA

Jalen Smith Player Profile

Jalen Smith – C – Maryland

Pros:

  • Tremendous three point shooter for a big. He has rare shooting versatility, as he can shoot off of pull-ups, screens, or the catch
  • Great inside finisher. Good ambidexterity and touch on layups; absorbs contact really well too
  • Excellent screener. Point guards are going to love his ability to screen hard and then either roll or pop
  • Very athletic. He is a constant lob threat in transition
  • Good shot blocker as he has great timing and instincts
  • Holds his own against perimeter players on switches. He is still a bit stiff, but he could be versatile if he works on his quickness

Cons:

  • Needs to work on his lower body strength so he doesn’t get pushed out of the post often offensively
  • Poor passer. He tends to get tunnel vision on drives to the basket, and sometimes he telegraphs his passes, which makes it easy to intercept
  • Can be prone to getting blown by quicker guards when he puts himself out of position on defense

Prospect Overview

Jalen Smith is an extremely talented and versatile big man. His ability to space the floor is rare, and I’m very impressed with some of the shots he took as a near 7-footer. He’s a great inside-out threat who can shoot and score from anywhere. He’s got a great motor that helps him grab boards on offense and compete hard all the time on defense. His natural shot-blocking ability makes him a force at the rim despite being slightly undersized. He needs to work on his body a bit to improve his defensive versatility and post game. Regardless, his three point shooting, never-ending motor, and two-way play has to intrigue teams. I think his talent and fit in the modern NBA is too much to ignore.

Player Comparison: Myles Turner

  • Thomas Stapleton

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