The San Antonio Spurs are still trying to find out what kind of team they are this season — lottery or not — and so their projected draft spot has fluctuated a bit as a result with their 11-12 record. What hasn’t fluctuated though is their second first round pick courtesy of the trade with the Toronto Raptors. That pick is looking like it will be one of the last in the first round and that is where we are looking for this week’s draft prospect.
The possible late first-rounder that the Spurs should be looking at is Mississippi State senior big man Aric Holman. The 6-foot-10, 225-pound Bulldog is a bit of a late bloomer, which is why he hasn’t really gotten NBA Draft hype until now. However, he’s earned it with his play over the last couple years. His stats may not impress a lot of people, but he also plays on a team that has several scorers and other good players. With that being said, here are his current stats from this season (updated to the end of the season):
- 9.5 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 0.9 SPG, 1.6 BPG
- 47.3 FG%, 42.9 3P%, 70.1 FT%
- 22.2 PER, 117.2 ORtg, 99.6 DRtg,
Holman is not a particularly great shooter right now — as you can see in his percentages, but he did shoot a career-high 44 percent from three-point land season. Realistically, he’s probably a low-to-mid 30s shooter from three as far as those percentages go. His form is just alright, but can be tweaked a little bit to be smoother and work a little better at the next level. More importantly, he’s another young big who can run the floor and should be able to space it a little bit for the rest of the team. He can also go into the post and handle himself fairly well there. He’s got a few nice moves he utilizes and he is patient, using pump fakes and ball fakes to get defenders out of position for him to score.
Wingspan, quickness, jumping ability and defense are the things that stand out most about Holman as he’s got a 7-foot-2 wingspan (that’s +4 for anyone keeping track) and moves fairly well for someone his size. He will need to put on a little bit of muscle to bang in the paint with some of the bigger centers and power forwards, but that shouldn’t be too hard for him as he’s already in pretty good shape. Holman’s jumping ability is what allows him to get so many blocks and he has a great knack for coming from the weak side to swat shots. That will certainly make Spurs fans happy as the team doesn’t really have any big men who do that right now as they are either old or just not that athletic.
Some areas of improvement for Holman will be his playmaking skills as he will probably end up being a stretch big (should his shooting pan out) and being more consistent in games. He doesn’t always commit himself to the boards as much as he should and he can become passive on offense at times. Should those little bugaboos get shored up, then Holman can turn into a solid prospect that may even be able to contribute right away depending on 2019 free agency goes and if certain guys don’t return to the team.