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Denver Stiffs NBA Draft Prospect: Jacob Evans

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A potential trade-down selection

NCAA Basketball: Cincinnati at Houston Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Zhaire Smith | Robert Williams | Keita Bates-Diop | Miles Bridges | Josh Okogie | Chandler Hutchison | Džanan Musa | Troy Brown | Shai Gilgeous-Alexander | Melvin Frazier | Kevin Knox

Measurables

Age: 21
Height: 6’ 5.5” (w/ shoes)
Weight: 200lbs
Wingspan: 6’9”
Standing reach: 8’ 6.5”
Hand length: 9”x9.5”
Max vertical: 35.5”
Bench Press reps: 8
Three-quarter sprint: 3.2

Stats

Per Game Table
Season School Conf G GS MP FG FGA FG% 2P 2PA 2P% 3P 3PA 3P% FT FTA FT% ORB DRB TRB AST STL BLK TOV PF PTS SOS
2015-16 Cincinnati AAC 33 8 24.4 2.8 7.7 .372 1.5 3.6 .415 1.4 4.1 .333 1.4 1.7 .804 1.1 3.0 4.1 1.6 0.8 0.8 0.8 1.8 8.4 5.25
2016-17 Cincinnati AAC 36 36 31.6 4.7 9.9 .473 2.8 5.3 .521 1.9 4.6 .418 2.3 3.1 .732 1.5 2.7 4.2 2.7 1.3 0.8 1.3 2.1 13.5 5.49
2017-18 Cincinnati AAC 36 36 30.8 4.5 10.5 .427 2.8 6.0 .470 1.7 4.5 .370 2.4 3.2 .754 1.4 3.3 4.7 3.1 1.3 1.0 1.8 2.0 13.0 3.53
Career Cincinnati 105 80 29.1 4.0 9.4 .429 2.4 5.0 .476 1.7 4.4 .377 2.0 2.7 .755 1.3 3.0 4.3 2.5 1.1 0.9 1.3 2.0 11.7 4.75
Provided by CBB at Sports Reference: View Original Table
Generated 6/20/2018.

Strengths

Shot selection: One of my favorite skills in all of basketball. Evans isn’t a guy who will hijack the offense and try to create something out of nothing. Even when he was forced into the play-maker role at Cincinnati, Evans did a great job of picking when to go off script and when to stick to the game plan.

Three-point shot: He shot over 41% on 4.6 attempts per game as a sophomore. Those numbers dipped a bit his junior season to 37% but even if he isn’t an elite knock-down shooter, he should at least be capable enough to keep the defense honest.

Solid defender: It’s had to tell if Evans will be a lockdown defender at the NBA level but he has shown that he has the feel and strength to be a solid defender, both on the ball and in help side. He’s strong enough to guard wings and crafty enough to contain guards.

Weaknesses

Not a creator: You can probably count on Evans to finish plays without screwing up the flow of the offense but you probably won’t count on him to initiate the offense or generate a lot of offense through isolations or as the lead ball-handler in PnR.

Athleticism: Evans will be a below-average NBA athlete for the small forward position, arguably the most athletic position in basketball. He has some size and strength but he will struggle against the more explosive types who are not deterred by his strength.

Very reliant on his shot: One question I always ask about players is, if you take away their best skill do they have something to fall back on? Evans is a good shooter but there is plenty of reason to doubt that he can be an elite shooter. And on nights whee his shot is not falling, he doesn’t have a whole lot to fall back on.

Fit with the Denver Nuggets

Evans could be a target for Denver should they move back in the draft but he would be a reach at 14. I don’t think his upside is very high so you’re likely getting an off-the-bench role player who can be tasked to do his job and stay in his lane but probably won’t win you a lot of games off of talent. His positive IQ and feel for the game is a big plus, especially on a team that values these things so highly, but he probably isn’t a long-term answer at the small forward position.