NBA Draft Spotlight: Nicolas Claxton

Nicolas Claxton took that giant sophomore leap that many expected, positioning himself to get drafted should he keep his name in the pool. He is a budding talent that could really make a splash in college basketball next year.

Position: PF From: Georgia Class/YOB: Sophomore
Height: 6’11 Weight: 220 Wingspan: 7’3

Strengths:

  • Tremendous quickness as a leaper. Stays active as a shot-blocker around the rim and can get putbacks with ease. Has all of the tools and anticipation to become a good screen defender
  • Blossoming face-up game. Puts the ball on the ground from the elbows and can get to the basket with basic moves. Has shown the ability to knock down threes when he has time. Gets his feet set well coming off pick-and-rolls
  • Wants to make plays for his teammates. Due to his comfort in transition, he can push the ball and advance pass to initiate the break
  • Played with a more consistent motor this season. He runs the floor like a gazelle and can really impact the game with his rebounding and shot blocking

Weaknesses:

  • Dealt with a lot of turnover issues playing on the perimeter more. It is still an adjustment and he has some areas to round out as a ball-handler and perimeter shooter
  • Below-average physicality. Weighed in around 216 pounds at the combine. Doesn’t have the strength to play through NBA-level bigs
  • Not very comfortable with his back to the basket. Can be pushed off the block and doesn’t have strong low post moves
  • Still a raw player on both ends. It would be nice to see him go back to Georgia, develop his body and game, and get a brighter spotlight on a top-25 team
PPG RPG APG SPG BPG TPG FG% 3PT% FT%
13.0 8.6 1.8 1.1 2.5 2.1 46.0% 28.1% 64.1%

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