When all is said and done, Marcus Smart could be the best point guard to come out of the 2014 NBA Draft.
While Shabazz Napier has the championship pedigree and Tyler Ennis is a freshman phenom garnering a lot of buzz, Smart might have the most NBA-ready game of them all. Standing 6′ 3″ and weighing in at 227 pounds, Smart is a stocky floor general who loves to take the ball to the hoop and draw contact in the key. He’s also a solid defender, showing the ability to guard larger, longer players during his time at Oklahoma State.
During a recent draft workout in Los Angeles, Smart showed off his explosiveness with a couple of impressive dunks, as well as a nice shooting display:
Scouts point out that Smart could stand to improve his jump shot, a shortcoming he may be able to mask for a brief time in the NBA if he focuses on distributing the ball and making an impact for a team that likes to run since he excels in the transition game. And whether fair or not, some still call into question Smart’s character following an unfortunate tussle with a Texas Tech fan earlier this year that garnered all the wrong type of attention for a player who decided to forego the draft last year to spend another year developing his skills at the college level.
I don’t think the Nuggets have a huge need at the point guard position, but if Smart is available at the 11 spot, it might be difficult for Denver to let him slip by. Ty Lawson is the de facto starter at point for the foreseeable future, but there’s definitely some opportunity for a young point guard to come in and compete for minutes with Nate Robinson and any other free agents the team may sign this offseason. Plus, with his versatility and defensive ability, Smart might be able to play some 2-guard as part of a small lineup. Having Lawson and Smart on the floor at the same time could drive opponents crazy from a defensive perspective.
Do you think Smart is a good fit for the Nuggets? Should the Nuggets grab Smart if he slips to the 11 pick or do you think the team is all set at point guard? Share your thoughts in the comments below or get at me on Twitter @TheSEShepherd.