NBA Draft Spotlight: Talen Horton-Tucker

Few people outside of Ames or Chicago expected Talen Horton-Tucker to be an immediate impact player, let alone a first-round hopeful. He has hired an agent and is exploring the draft as of earlier in the week.

Position: SF From: Iowa State Class/YOB: Freshman
Height: 6’4 Weight: 230 Wingspan: 7’0

Strengths:

  • Tremendous length for his height. Uses 7-foot wingspan to his advantage in nearly every area of his game
  • Switch potential as a defender. Capable of guarding every spot at the college level. Has very good hands, regularly leading to strips and deflections. Moves with purpose as a help defender. Defensive versatility is his best trait
  • Decent playmaking feel. Worked well in pick-and-rolls. Capable of initiating against pressure when necessary. Good open court weapon due to his ability to take defensive rebounds and starting the break
  • Slashes to the rim and uses his length to push shots over defenses. Won’t ever be asked to be a go-to option in the NBA, but he can do enough with the ball to get to the basket. Makes a lot of shots from unorthodox angles
  • Very projectable frame. Wide shoulders and plus strength for a wing. If he leans down, he should become quicker and develop into an elite defender who can score and make plays on the move

Weaknesses:

  • Will need to show at the combine and during workouts that he can shoot the three. He took about five a game, but was wildly inconsistent. There is potential there, so it may just be a matter of youth. Poor fool shooting and a slow release are bad signs, but he’s also got decent form, so it is a wait-and-see skill today
  • Not an isolation scorer at this point. While he can do a little bit off the dribble, he ran into problems when players starting to take away his straight-line drives. Developing that pull-up game from 15-19 feet should open things up for his drives
  • Redefined his body in the last year, though he still has to become more cut to maximize his game as a do-it-all wing
  • He is still very young and makes some mistakes that show it. Wants to be more of a playmaker than he is ready to be at this stage
PPG RPG APG SPG BPG TPG FG% 3PT% FT%
11.8 4.9 2.3 1.3 0.7 1.7 40.6% 30.8% 62.5%

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