From: Las Vegas
ORIGINAL: David Levine
ORIGINAL: Mr. Ed
IMO Ball has even more red flags.
DL, what are the LaMelo Red flags
Beside his father?
His father is a non-issue. LaMelo has done everything he can to distance himself from him.
And by all accounts, he's a really likable kid, a very good teammate and he absolutely loves basketball. He's the type of guy that would refuse to come out of blowouts and instead he'd set screens and set up passes to the end of bench guys to make sure they all got a chance to score.
His red flags are shooting and defense, but I don't think either are fatal flaws.
He's never had a shooting coach, and his form still tends to look like the little kid that his dad forced to play against guys 5+ years older than him all his life. And his shot selection is pretty atrocious because he's always been told to "let it fly".
That said, he has very good natural touch (he has a terrific floater out to about 10 feet, he's good around the basket and he makes his FTs. And he appears coachable. About halfway through last season he got rid of his outrageous leg kick and proceeded to shoot 38% from 3 for the the 2nd half of his year.
On defense, he has all the tools. He has great length, enough athleticism and a really high BBIQ. He's also a tremendous rebounder - which is one of the things you look at when projecting defense. He does get steals (but tends to gamble), and has shown natural instincts at staying in front of his man.
He's literally never been told to play defense. This is where he really needs to be coached up.
And that goes back to the main problem. He's never been properly coached. He's basically dominated everywhere he's gone on raw instinct and BBIQ. His dad was his AAU coach throughout his life and he went to an awful Australia team where he was just told to go out and do his thing (and he nearly averaged a triple-double against grown men doing it).
What he brings to the draft that no one else does is he already has elite NBA level skills. His handle with both hands, vision and passing ability will likely be Top 5 the minute he steps on the floor. I also wouldn't be shocked if he averages 6 rebounds as a skinny rookie.
So he is a poor man's Zach LaVine.
I literally described the opposite of Zach LaVine (outside of loving basketball).
Shooting is Zach's one real skill. And he has almost no BBIQ.