Markelle Fultz

Markelle Fultz (PG/SG, Washington)

 

Measurables: 6’4”, 6’10” wingspan, 195 lbs, 19.0 years old

Strengths

  • Phenomenal size to play point guard
  • Excellent shooter from all over the court (41% from 3)
  • Was able to be one of the best creators in college basketball despite subpar teammates – 36 AST% (higher than Lonzo)
  • Explosive athlete in space
  • Already has refined mid range game – size allows him to get shot off over defenders
  • Goes right into contact at rim, advanced finisher (62% at rim, almost all shots created himself)
  • Excellent change of pace ability in transition, can slow down on drives and still finish well
  • Very comfortable pulling up from three when defenders sag off
  • Already has a bag of tricks getting to the rim, much more than a straight line driver
  • 02 PPP on pull-up jumpers – extremely good, will translate
  • Was able to put up efficient stats even as defenses zeroed in on him and heavily contested shots
  • Great extension at rim
  • Smart with ball – 13 TOV%
  • Rare vision in PnR – will look even better with NBA teammates
  • Unselfish, willing playmaker
  • Overall, just has incredible intangibles – has the “superstar gene”
  • Has athletic ability and size to be plus defender when engaged
  • Chase down block ability
  • Plays stronger than his frame looks

Weaknesses

  • Free throw percentage is worrisome (65%)
  • Defensive effort level wanes at times
  • Will have to play smarter on the defensive end
  • Shot doesn’t come out exceptionally quickly off catch
  • Checks out when beat on defense at times
  • Propensity for mid range shots leads to some poor shot selection
  • Intensity wanes at times
  • How much of Washington’s struggle to win is on him?
  • Struggles on defense when he doesn’t sit down
  • Definitely takes plays off on defense
  • Still very young – has a lot to learn in terms of awareness
  • Sometimes tries to throw il-advised passes instead of scoring himself
  • Streakiness in jumper is something to watch
  • Struggles on contested 3s
  • Doesn’t have elite speed to turn the corner against top defenders

Overall

  • Fultz is the clear number one in this draft, with a rare offensive showcase on a bad Washington team at just 18. There are questions about his consistency and defense, but any 18 year old will be inconsistent, and his offensive responsibilities meant that it would be tough for him to maintain consistent defensive effort. That said, Fultz can improve his effort, IQ, and consistency on both ends going forward. Not the most explosive athlete, Fultz relies a lot on nuance, but he’s exceptionally skilled as a passer and shot creator overall, reminiscent of James Harden. His size, offensive promise, and intangibles overall make him the best prospect in this draft and almost surely a future superstar.

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