(Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
We continue our coverage of college prospects for the upcoming 2014 NBA Draft which is set to take place on June 26, 2014. This week we take a look at Duke swing man, Rodney Hood.
Chris Martin covers College Basketball for Raining3s.com and provides his analysis.
Raining3s’ 2014 NBA Draft Evaluation: Rodney Hood
Rodney Hood is a dynamic wing/small forward who is 6’8” and weighs 201 lbs. He is very lean, has strong hands, a quick first step, and can defend point guards to power forwards.
Rodney Hood is a lean 6’8’’ player who has long arms and a quick first step. He has an above average vertical leap and could probably put on 20 lbs so that he doesn’t get bullied around by NBA players.
Rodney Hood is great at passing the ball as well as taking it straight to the hoop. He has pretty decent ball handling skills for someone 6’8’’ and is always looking up to see the floor. At times during the season, he was unstoppable at creating for teammates and piling up assists, hitting threes, and getting to the foul line. However, there were many times of the game where he became passive and non-existent.
Outside shooting ability:
Rodney Hood has great range for someone who is 6’8’’. He can easily knock down threes and has a great mid-range game as well. Hood is also great at finishing around the rim and is an above average free-throw shooter. Hood has the ability to get to the rim anytime he wants but sometimes lack the aggressiveness needed to be a superstar. I think that Hood would fit better as a number 2 or 3 scoring option rather than being the go to guy.
Ability to get his own shot:
Hood can get his own shot anytime he wants because of his ability to put the ball on the floor and his ability to hit threes. The problem is sometimes he gets nervous/passive and lost in spurts of a game. He can score 15 points in a half and then not score the rest of the game. I think Hood needs the right coach to help him with some of his anxiety so that he can be a consistent scorer at the next level.
Being a Coach K pupil, Hood should be regarded as a better defensive player. On defense, Hood has the ability to guard multiple positions, although he projects best as a small forward/wing. Hood can use his long length and quickness to slow down offensive players in one-on-one situations but sometimes gets bored on defense and his mind wanders.
Hood’s biggest issues defensively revolved around his lack of intensity and tendency to play at half speed at times. Hood struggled in defending on ball screens and was constantly out of position multiple times during the game which resulted in layups and back door dunks. When he gets screened, he often gives up on the play, taking himself completely out of the resulting action.
Basketball IQ and intangibles:
Hood has a great basketball IQ. He rarely turns the ball over (10% turnover rate). Hood is very unselfish which could be a little detrimental to his draft stock. Sometimes he doesn’t score for large portions of the game and seems very content at just playing defense and passing the ball. He sees the floor well for being 6’8’’ and besides his teammate Jabari Parker is the next best college basketball player who can execute offensively in the half-court, which will translate perfectly into the NBA.
Hood will most likely be a small forward in the NBA. If he works on his ball handling skills he might be able to take on a little point guard duties for the 2nd squad as well. I believe that Hood has the ability to be a 10 year player in the NBA but I think he will need to be paired with a team that has an outspoken point guard and a coach who can motivate him, especially on defense.
Projected draft position:
Projected draft position will be mid first round, most likely not falling beyond the 20th pick depending which team is there and if they already have a wing/small forward.
Comparable NBA player:
Rodney Hood reminds me a lot of Tayshaun Prince and not just because they are both left handed. I think Rodney Hood has a lot of potential and is a better shooter than Prince was coming out of college.
– Draft evaluation written by Chris Martin, aka the Duke of Martin. You can follow Chris on Facebook.
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