Spurs Prospect Watch: Shake Milton

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TULSA, OK - MARCH 17: Shake Milton #1 of the Southern Methodist Mustangs looks on in the first half against the USC Trojans during the first round of the 2017 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at BOK Center on March 17, 2017 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Kawhi Leonard is back in the lineup and looks like he is shaking off the rust from sitting so long due to his injury. The Spurs are still projected to win over 50 games and that should secure them a spot in the playoffs. With that comes the responsibility of picking late in the NBA Draft, which the team is certainly used to doing in the last couple decades.

And that brings us to this week’s prospect watch featuring SMU’s Shake Milton. The 6-foot-6, 205-pound guard is similar to his former teammate and current Boston Celtic Semi Ojeleye. He does a little bit of everything well, but isn’t superb at any one aspect of the game. Here are some of his stats to give you an idea of what he can do:

  • 16.7 PPG, 4.7 APG, 4.6 RPG
  • 40.9 FG%, 39.1 3P%
  • 118.9 ORtg, 90.7 DRtg
    • Per-40 stats
      • 18.7 PPG, 5.3 APG, 5.1 RPG

Milton has improved in a lot of areas for the Mustangs from his sophomore season last year. He’s scoring more, is facilitating for his team and is boarding the ball at a solid pace. However, with his usage rate going up he has not quite figured out how to shoot efficiently still. His shooting percentages are the only thing to have gone down, but he won’t be the main guy running the show should the Spurs draft him, so that may not be as big an issue as people believe.

He has become a better defender as evidenced in his increase of steals and blocks over his three-year career. His length and athleticism also allow him to play and defend at least two positions, if not three, in a small-ball lineup. He can just as easily be the ball handler on offense or be off it and really is a quintessential Spurs guy in that he just wants to do something that helps the team and it doesn’t matter what that might be.

Some scouting analysts believe that he is unselfish to a fault and that actually hinders him as he takes a back seat on offense sometimes. There are certainly times when he needs to assert himself and that will be something to keep an eye on as the season hits the halfway point and conference play begins in the next few days.

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