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2021 NBA Draft Profile: Tre Mann could provide Denver a boost offensively

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Evaluating one of the best scorers in this years draft class, Tre Mann.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: DEC 30 Florida at Vanderbilt Photo by Matthew Maxey/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This is player that should get Denver Nuggets fans excited. For a team that could use more scoring — especially from the guard position — Tre Mann could be just the prospect the Nuggets target in the first round of this years draft.

Coming out of Florida after a tremendous sophomore season, Mann projects to get drafted around mid to late first round. With the Nuggets currently slated at pick 26th, Mann is a guy that could either fall in their lap or get drafted eight to 10 spots before they’re even up.

The thing that stands out when watching Mann his his ability to score and well, score. Mann projects to be a high level scorer at the next level and has a ton of upside considering he’s still just 20 years old. Denver’s recently drafted players with tons of upside and Mann certainly falls into that category.

Tre Mann - University of Florida

Vitals

Age: 20 (born February 3, 2001)

Height: 6-foot-4

Weight: 178 pounds

Wingspan: 6-foot-5

Per game Stats (Sophomore season)

Mann put together a phenomenal sophomore season averaging 16 points per game in 24 starts with the Gators. Not only did he score the ball with ease, but he did so efficiently shooting 45 percent from the field and 40 percent from beyond the arc. Mann also hauled in 5.6 rebounds and dished out 3.5 assists per game.

Strengths

Ability to create

This is one of Mann’s best abilities as he is one of the most gifted offensive creators in this class. Mann found a way to develop this part of his game following his freshman season in which he played just four games averaging 5.3 points in 17.8 minutes of action.

The reason why Mann didn’t get much playing time during his freshman season was because he was behind Andrew Nembhard, who has since transferred to Gonzaga. Mann was finally able to get extended minutes this past year and showcased an ability to deliver and create any time the Gators needed a bucket.

Mann mostly played on ball this past year and did a lot of the primary ball handling for Florida. Because of that, Mann is able to create off the dribble efficiently and score in a variety of ways. Mann has an ability to stop on a dime and score from anywhere on the court and his shiftiness/athletic ability forces defenses to be on their toes at all times.

Even though most of his time at Florida was spent with the ball being in his hands, Mann has showcased an ability to play off-ball if a team needs him too, which may end being how most teams project him because of his remarkable ability to shoot and score the basketball.

Scorer

Mann is a walking bucket from the moment he walks into the gym. When you need a bucket Mann is the guy you go to and he often delivers. Not only was Mann phenomenal offensively this past year, but the beauty of it was how much he improved after this freshman season.

Mann shot just 27 percent from three as a freshman, but found a way to improve on that as he shot 40 percent from three during his sophomore season. That rise in production came with increased opportunity as Mann averaged 32.4 minutes per game last year and started all 24 games he played in. It also shows how Mann is getting better with more playing time, which makes his upside much higher when compared to other players in this class.

Whether it’s at the rim, mid-range, or from three, Mann can put the ball in the basket. Not only did Mann put that on full display all last season, but he also balled out when the bright lights were on in the NCAA Tournament. Mann scored 14 points and made 3-of-6 from three in Florida’s first round victory over Virginia Tech back in March and followed that game up with a team-high 19 points in Florida’s round of 32 loss to Oral Roberts.

The other beauty about Mann is he is a gamer and rises to the occasion when his team needs him most. Mann played 44 of 45 minutes in the Virginia Tech game and 37 of 40 minutes in the Oral Roberts game. That type of ability not only shows Mann is in phenomenal shape, but that he will do anything the team needs from him.

It’s also hard not to mention the step-back when talking about Mann cause that feels like his go-to move at least once a game. No matter which game you go back and watch of Mann you are going to see at least one lethal step-back a game as defenders just have no way of stopping it. Mann’s body control is remarkable and always provides him a nice base which is why he makes so many step-back jumpers.

Upside

Mann is still extremely young at just 20 years old and he won't turn 21 till halfway through his rookie season. His production following his freshman season shows that Mann is only getting better with age and the best it still to come.

We highlighted Chris Duarte the other day, who is the oldest prospect in this class at 24 years old. Even though Duarte is more ready to contribute right away and help a team who is close to making a title run, some teams may prefer a player like Mann who possesses a little more upside from an age stand point.

It would have to be the right situation for Mann to contribute right away as the G-League is a place where he could star during his rookie season. Not only would that allow Mann to get some much needed experience in his first season as a pro, but it could also give him the confidence he needs to springboard his NBA career.

For a team like the Nuggets, they have drafted on upside the past few seasons with players like Bol Bol, Zeke Nnaji, RJ Hampton, and most notably Michael Porter Jr., so Mann could easily intrigue Tim Connelly and Denver’s front office if he is on the board when they are slated to select at 26th overall.

Weaknesses

Over creativity offensively/turnovers

You see this all the time from players that are extremely gifted offensively and it’s often times something you just have to live with and that is turnovers. Mann committed 2.8 turnovers per game last season, which feels like it could have been worse considering how much ball handling he was asked to do at Florida.

We have a prime example of that here in Denver with Nikola Jokic, who has committed 3.1 turnovers per game in each of the past three seasons. It’s just something that comes with the territory of being an offensive playmaker as the defense is bound to get you from time to time.

It will be important for Mann to limit those turnovers in his rookie season, while still playing with the creativity that make his game so special. If Mann can find a way to limit his turnovers around 2-3 a game, whatever team that drafts him shouldn't have an issue with that as long as he’s finding ways to create consistent/positive plays offensively.

Frame

Height is not a concern for Mann at 6-foot-4, but what could be an issue is he weighed in at just 177.6 pounds at the combine a few weeks ago. Mann will be going up against bigger guards in the NBA and his smaller frame will make it tough to finish all those baskets he’s accustomed to making near the rim.

It’s also a defensive concern as Mann will be put in a ton of screening plays by opposing teams. Mann will have to find a way to bulk up to make going through those screens easier or teams will just pick on him left and right. If Mann can find a way to get up into that 190 range it will improve his chances of having a long playing career.

Defense

Pick-n-roll defense is a concern for Mann at the next level as is his one-on-one defense. Mann has one of the smaller wingspans in this years class, which affects his ability to get his hands into passing lanes and make those impactful steals a lot of teams are looking for.

Mann would sometimes get beaten by quicker guards during his time at Florida so finding a way to shore that up will be huge at the next level. There’s no question that Mann has the capabilities to be at least a solid defender in the NBA, it will just take the buy in like he does on the offensive end of the floor to make it happen.


Verdict

There is no telling whether Mann will be available when the Nuggets pick at 26, but if he is he’s 100 percent a guy you have to consider taking. Denver has a hole at the shooting guard position and Mann could slot right in and possibly get minutes in year one.

Mann could be a perfect fit next to Nikola Jokic or even as one of the Nuggets primary scorers off the bench. The other nice thing is the Nuggets finally have a G-League team next season in the Grand Rapids Gold, so if they want to give Mann more playing time they now have an option to do that.

His age and upside make Mann a very intriguing prospect for the Nuggets as he could even start at shooting guard next season depending on what happens with Will Barton this offseason. If Mann can find a way to grow defensively, he projects to have a solid NBA scorer based off his pure gift to just score the basketball, which could make him a great fit here in Denver with the Nuggets.