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NBA Draft Scouting: Josh Green

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The Aussie could be an interesting pickup in the Draft

Washington v Arizona Photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images

Physicals:

Height - 6’5

Weight - 200 lbs

Wingpsan - 6’10

Josh Green is one of the more hyped prospects in the NBA Draft. Green’s combination of athleticism and size created a ton of highlight reels and mixtapes when he played AAU basketball. His play at the college level has been fairly inconsistent and a few flaws in his game have come to the fore during his time in Arizona.

Green had teething issues as he learned to play as a third option on the Wildcats behind Mannion and Nnaji. He relied heavily on his athleticism to make plays on offense which works most of the time but it is not a perfect tool. You need ball-handling skills to break down great defenses.

Josh Green is projected to go around 22nd but I can see him being drafted towards the end of the first round. I do not think that Oklahoma City will have to make any trades to move up in the Draft.

While Green has his inconsistencies, there is enough in his game to suggest that he can be a solid role player at the NBA level. Josh Green is pretty good at making plays for others and he can defend at a high level.

Green's defense is the most impressive aspect of his game; Green has the potential to be a multi-positional defender in the future. Green is a lengthy guard who is a strong athlete. He was very good at using those long arms and his quickness to contain guys off the dribble in college.

Moreover, Josh Green has shown a proficiency for getting steals. Green averaged 1.5 steals per game for Arizona and was able to use his arms to grab hold of the ball time and time again.

As a whole, Josh Green showed a lot of promise in college. It is very easy to see him as a Swiss Army player on defense who can guard stronger or faster players without getting roasted.

However, Green did have issues on defense. There were a few occasions where he was impulsive and undisciplined on that end of the floor. When you watch the film, it seemed like Green chased steals at times instead of playing sound defense.

It is hard to say whether this trait will carry over to Josh Green’s career as a professional player. At this point in time, he is such a young player and it is impossible to work out how he adapts to the NBA.

Josh Green is also a solid playmaker at the shooting guard spot. He was comfortable running the offense and handling the rock for the Wildcats. Green displayed an ability to balance his own shots and his teammates’ looks when he was the primary ball-handler. Josh Green certainly has the vision and feel for the game to be a secondary creator in the NBA.

He was unselfish with the ball but I thought that he was too unselfish at times. I like to see guards getting everybody involved but it did feel like Green was turning down good looks when he had great opportunities to score.

His passivity has been a common knock on his play at Arizona and this is something that Josh Green has to cut out of his game. An offense cannot function at a high level if one player is not engaged or aggressive on the offensive end of the floor.

The lack of engagement was clearly visible in the game against Gonzaga. Green was fine during the game but it was his body language that was a little concerning to me. He drifted on offense at times during the game; a great example of the drift would be his cutting. Green was jogging through cuts when the coach called a particular action.

Green’s jumper will need work for him to become an efficient outside shooter in the NBA. Josh Green was not a great jump shooter in college. He shot 36.1% from downtown but the numbers do not tell the whole story.

His release was inconsistent. There were moments when Josh Green was shooting with the ball very close to his face and there were times when he released the ball quite far away from his body. Green used the close and tucked jumper more than the other release but even this form needs work.

The close, tight release is not a clean, flowing shooting form. Green has to allow his arms enough room to generate propulsion on the shot.

The last big issue for Josh Green is his finishing at the rim. Green relies on his athleticism to get good looks at the rim. This works well against smaller defenders but it is worrying that Green relies so heavily on his athletic burst to get shots inside.

Athleticism alone will not beat taller, stronger defenders. Josh Green will need to build a toolbag of finishes around the rim to be effective and efficient in that area of the floor in the NBA.

Josh Green is a young guy with a lot of promise. Green has the potential to be a high level role players four or five years down the line if everything goes well. This should not be a concern that influences Oklahoma City’s decision. The Thunder should not expect to win in the short-term and therefore should take a serious look at project players.

However, there are other players in this Draft who I believe are better prospects. Vassell and Bey can do what Josh Green does while also being elite shooters. Both of these players have higher floors but they also have higher ceilings. Green could be worth taking if the Thunder are not able to trade up into the lottery.