What if we drafted....Jordan Crawford? (Featuring XU Basketball Blog Dana and Victory)

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This is a feature that we'll roll out as often as possible leading up to the draft. Basically, we'll be taking an in depth look at some of the potential draftees for the Thunder, and asking questions of the people who know them best, the college blogs that cover them. Up now is Jordan Crawford of Xavier University, and the XU Basketball Blog, Dana and Victory. Scott Schroeder of Ridiculous Upside has him going pretty low, at Pick 38, and NBADraft.net has him going in the same spot, to the Knicks. He seems like a typical second rounder, but anything is possible in the NBA Draft. Regardless, he is a potential future Thunder player, so here's the 411 on Jordan Crawford....

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Jordan Crawford, Shooting Guard, #55, Xavier University

Season Team Min Pts Reb Ast TO Stl Blk PF FG% FT% 3PT%
2007-2008 Indiana 25.3 9.7 3.4 2.3 1.9 1.19 .2 1.6 .440 .746 .366
2008-2009 Xavier (Transfer Year) N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
2009-2010 Xavier 32.8 20.5 4.7 2.9 2.4 1.19 .2 1.6 .462 .773 .391

Highlights Via BobLahblahsLawblogs on YouTube

Q&A, Dana and Victory

1. What type of player is Jordan Crawford? What are his strengths/weaknesses?

Crawford was an elite college basketball player his sophomore year at Xavier, a player capable of controlling a game not only by scoring, but also rebounding from the guard position and using elite court vision to improve his teammates. His biggest strength is finishing in transition using his quickness, body control, and a dizzying array of scoop shots. Crawford is also an outstanding three-point shooter and will have no problems adapting to the NBA line. Biggest weaknesses are size and defense. Crawford might list at 6-4, which will make him an undersized NBA shooting guard. On defense, Crawford will struggle, there’s just no two ways about it. He’s clearly a "you score 20, I’ll score 30" type of player right now – he’ll have to improve that to succeed in the league.

Below: NBA Comparison? College Performance? Favourite Moment?

2. Based on what you know, do you think he'll be an NBA caliber player? If so, who would you compare him to?

Crawford’s ability to contribute early in his career is probably going to depend on the coaching and personnel situation where he is drafted. I certainly think he has the talent to have a long and productive NBA career. The two guys I’ve seen him compared to the most are Kevin Martin of the Rockets and Jamal Crawford of the Hawks.

3. Based on what you know, do you think he would be a good fit for the Thunder?

I think I’ve only seen the Thunder play twice, so I probably am not qualified to say.

4. Do you think Crawford will drop to pick #32, or do you think he'll go before that?

According to all the mock drafts I’ve seen, Crawford should be available at 32. I don’t think most NBA scouts view him as a first-rounder (although he seems to have gotten some conflicting advice from the front offices he worked out for, particularly New Jersey and Boston).

Early last season, Xavier played in a tournament in Orlando and frankly neither Jordan nor the team acquitted themselves very well. X lost to Marquette and Baylor and Crawford had horrible games in both (4-20 against MU). He also displayed poor body language and seemed out of sync with his teammates. I think a lot of NBA scouts were put off JCraw because of that early experience. Frankly, the whole team was struggling to find a rhythm at that stage in the season after a coaching transition and the loss of three top players from last year’s team, including Bobcats draft pick Derrick Brown.

I think Crawford raised his national profile with an epic NCAA Tournament but his effort in the Atlantic 10 schedule was nothing short of superb. He put the Musketeers on his back time and time again and led a very unfancied team to the Sweet 16 (and but for a few bad breaks, they could well have been Butler). As a result, I think Jordan has been flying under the radar to a certain extent and the team that nabs him at the bottom of the first or the top of the second is going to be getting great value.

5. The Thunder are a very disciplined squad with a team mentality. Do you think Jordan Crawford would fit into that type of environment, or would he be too wild or selfish?

I think Crawford, like most rookies, is going to have to make a transition between the guy who always has the ball in his hands to a guy who is a backup option when he’s on the court. In games where Crawford was stymied or his shot was off (I’m thinking specifically of the A-10 tournament game against Dayton), he showed an ability to make his teammates better by passing to them in good positions.

6. Do you want to see him go to the Thunder, unite with David West in New Orleans, or go somewhere else?

No real preference.

7. What is your favorite Jordan Crawford moment? (YouTube link if possible/applicable?)

You’ve seen this one – the 28-foot jump shot to force double OT against Kansas State in the NCAA Tournament. I call it the J-Bomb.

[One thing interesting there – note that Denis Clemente clearly steps out of bounds on his way back up the court to attempt a last second shot…]

8. Jordan Crawford might have to live in the shadow of David West, currently the best former Xavier player in the NBA. Do you think Crawford would ever reach a David West level and become an All-Star, or do you think he will never reach that level.

He’ll probably not get to the level West has reached. David was an AP Player of the Year at Xavier and had a polished, pro-ready post game by the beginning of his junior year in college. Plus, he’s shown an incredible aptitude for adding skills to his game – I remember when he came back for his senior year and all of a sudden was a reliable three-point shooter. Who knew?

But he could certainly play a similar role to James Posey, the other prominent XU player in the NBA at the moment – a solid fourth option who shoots the three reliably and can make teammates better.

Many thanks to Dana and Victory for the in-depth analysis. So, what do you think? Is Stanley Robinson a good pick or a bad pick? Will he be worth the risk in the first round? Even in the second round? Let us know by dropping a comment and voting in the poll!

See Also: Larry Sanders Profile, Solomon Alabi Profile, Stanley Robinson Profile, Kevin Seraphin Profile.

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