The San Antonio Spurs have been dealing with injuries as of late, but are still somehow in the top four of the Western Conference. They’re on pace for a 49-win season and that means a lower draft pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.
To get you ready for said draft, we are going through and putting collegiate prospects on your radar. This week’s prospect actually originally appeared on our “Do Not Watch” list, but he’s played himself down and out of lottery consideration. It is Duke point guard Trevon Duval and while him playing himself down to a potential late pick, there are still some nice qualities he has that the Spurs could use.
Here are some of his stats so far this season:
- 11.1 PPG, 5.7 APG, 1.4 SPG, 2.6 TPG
- 44.8 FG%, 60.3 FT%, 26.6 3P%
- 108.9 ORtg, 105.6 DRtg
- Per-40 stats:
- 15.3 PPG, 1.9 SPG, 7.9 APG, 2.8 RPG, 3.6 TPG
- Per-40 stats:
Duval has been a bit underwhelming, but he’s been given the reigns to a Coach K offense and has been relied on heavily. He uses about a fifth of the team’s possessions when he’s on the floor and frankly, it’s a miracle he doesn’t turn the ball over more. He does make some hasty decisions, but many times he’s able to make up for those mistakes with his pure athleticism.
At 6-foot-3 and 186 pounds he has solid size and is very quick. He gets Duke up the floor in transition quite often and some of his mistakes come from there. He’s also playing with three other freshmen pretty much every time he is on the floor, so there aren’t players to make him look better than he might be. And there’s no real safety net for him out there, which means that what you see is exactly what you get.
Duval is a very good scorer off the dribble, but he is quite the opposite when forced to take a shot. You can see his shooting percentages and the only reason his overall field goal percentage is so good is because when he doesn’t shoot a three, he’s right at the rim. However, he will of course have to improve his range if he wants to last in the NBA, but if there’s a point guard to learn from, it is certainly Tony Parker. He was not a shooter at all when he came into the league, but he has become enough of a threat that people have to guard him out there and that has opened the floor for him.
He would in all likelihood become Dejointe Murray’s backup and he would be a much different look coming off the bench since he’s a bit shorter, more athletic, and much quicker. While he hasn’t quite proven he can guard anyone yet — he is prone to defensive lapses — that will be fixed in the Spurs’ system. He’s also a freshman playing with other freshmen learning the defensive scheme so that hasn’t helped a whole lot either as the season has gone on. He would be a fine addition at the pick the Spurs are projected to get right now and with some polish, could turn out to be quite nice.