The San Antonio Spurs have four draft picks this year and while it’s doubtful they use all of them, there are still plenty of prospects to keep watching. One of these prospects is quite an under-the-radar guy in Wake Forest’s Jake LaRavia. The 6-foot-9, 230-pound forward does a little bit of everything well, but has no one elite skill.
LaRavia would be a stellar option with one of the late first round picks the Spurs possess. He can upgrade the forward position in a shooting and rebounding aspect, even if the athleticism is not on the same level as Keldon Johnson, Devin Vassell, or Joe Wieskamp. What he does have is everything else you look for in a wing player. Here are his stats from his first season playing in a Power 5 conference.
- 14.6 PPG, 1.0 BPG, 3.7 APG, 6.6 RPG, 1.7 SPG
- 55.9 FG%, 38.4 3P%, 77.7 FT%
- 22.9 PER, 121.7 ORtg, 95.9 DRtg
LaRavia might not have been the flashiest of passers this season, but he is an excellent ball mover. It never sticks with him and he finds open teammates. This will be crucial as a role player at the next level since he will have to find other ways to get involved in the offense as a non-ball handler (for now). Cutting and moving well off-ball is another excellent skill LaRavia possesses that could help him carve out a significant role and playing time early.
Efficiency as a shooter will be a huge boon for the Demon Deacon if he can prove that he can still shoot well at a higher clip. He only averaged 2.2 attempts from behind the arc last season and nine shot attempts overall per game. He should be able to raise those numbers a bit since the NBA game is faster and longer. His ability to attack closeouts will be key as well, since this Spurs team could use a couple drivers.
A couple things that might stop LaRavia from jumping too far up in the draft are his athleticism and explosiveness. That’s not to say he isn’t a good athlete, but he is not the kind of run and jump guy that scouts drool over. He makes plays above the rim and is a solid rebounder so there shouldn’t be too much concern there. He’s got a great motor with one “flaw” being that he is too unselfish at times. He lacks an elite first step off the dribble, but does so many other things well that the patience for him to get a bit quicker will be there.