Dub Nation HQ Draft Tourney Boss Fight: Scottie Barnes and Jonathan Kuminga
The "What If They Fall" Showdown
The whole tournament is at 2021 Dub Nation HQ Draft Tournament.
We have a winner in our Tourney Finals!
But wait, we’re not done. Because there is a really good chance that one of the Top 6 are going to fall to us.
The entire premise of this tournament has been to look at who we want GSW to choose for the 7th pick of the 2021 NBA Draft. To choose the field, we omitted the consensus Top 6.
When do drafts break from consensus?
I tried to make a list of the first “reach” in each recent draft. A reach is an unexpectedly high pick, not necessarily a bad pick.
2020 . #4 CHI Patrick Williams
2019 . #8 ATL Jaxson Hayes
2018 . #8 CLE Collin Sexton.
2017 . #8 NYK Frank Ntilikina
2016 . #4 PHX Dragan Bender
2015 . #5 ORL. Mario Hezonja
2014. #4. ORL. Aaron Gordon
2013. #1. CLE. Anthony Bennett
2012. #2. CHA. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (or #8 Terrence Ross)
2011. #4. CLE. Tristan Thompson.
2010. #6. GSW. Ekpe Udoh.
2009. #11. NJN. Terrance Williams.
2008. #4. Russell Westbrook
If you believe this list, there have been 8 to 9 reaches in the Top 6 out of the last 13 drafts. So history suggests that it’s quite common for a Top 6 team to pick someone unexpected.
Back to 2021
So… what if one of the Top 6 managed to be available at #7? Judging from the draft rumors and discussions, there is no way that Cade Cunningham, Evan Mobley or Jalen Green are falling out of the Top 6. Jalen Suggs is not a complete lock, but it would be very surprising. It would also be a bit boring to poll Suggs, since I believe most of Dub Nation would want him.
There has been a little bit of buzz about Scottie Barnes and Jonathan Kuminga possibly falling. And they are interesting prospects who have major issues that keep them from being a perfect fit for GSW, so this would be interesting to poll.
Here are the scouting reports for Barnes and Kuminga.
Profile from Sports-Reference.com
Per 40. Eric Snow, Dejounte Murray, Metta World Peace, Julian Wright, Earl Watson, Trevor Ariza, Keon Johnson, Rajon Rondo, Derrick Zimmerman
Advanced. Tremont Waters, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Kyle Anderson, Dennis Smith Jr., Michael Carter-Williams, Jaden Springer, Kira Lewis Jr., Kris Dunn, Dejounte Murray
NBA Draft Room Comp: Draymond, Magic. [Holy mackerel, that is overhyping a bit, yes? - EA]
Sam Vecenie, The Athletic: At between 6-foot-8 and 6-foot-9 with a 7-foot-2 wingspan and a strong, powerful frame, Barnes has prototypical size and length for the wing and switchable big position. His lateral agility also is strong, allowing him to be the one prospect in this class who can genuinely switch one through five right now. Florida State often used him at the point of attack on that end, and he has quick, disruptive hands. More than that, he plays with incredible energy and verve. He’s one of the most positive, energy-giving players you’ll evaluate, with a real positive spirit. Offensively, there is some work to do, but he’s a tremendous passer with a high feel for the game, having averaged over four assists per game for Florida State while playing some point guard. He’s more of a four at the NBA level, and he needs to improve the shot. But Barnes has a chance to be an elite role player who makes well over nine figures in terms of salary if he becomes even an average shooter.
Kevin O’Connor, The Ringer: SHADES OF Draymond Green, Pascal Siakam, Taller and Bulkier Michael Carter-Williams
Elite defender with playmaking skills, but needs to improve his jump shot to reach his full potential.
Incredible physical profile, with long arms and a huge, bulky frame mixed with quickness. Most importantly, he plays with a relentless defensive mindset. At worst, he’ll be a good defender; at best, he will win defensive accolades throughout his career.
Florida State used him all over defensively: guarding lead ball handlers, battling on the post against bigs, and playing the back line of the zone as a rim protector.
Plays point guard in college. A willing facilitator who pushes the ball ahead with long outlets and makes the extra pass in the half court.
Could be a playmaking threat out of dribble handoffs and the short roll. Solid open-floor playmaker who can throw darts across the court to corner 3-point shooters or hit the roller with a lob.
Takes big, long strides to the rim and barrels through defenders on drives while holding the ball in one hand to extend for layups. A freight train in the open floor who could become a major mismatch problem in the half court if he keeps advancing offensively.
Active offensive rebounder.
Competitor. Hustler. Crashes the offensive glass, races up the floor in transition, and sprints back on defense.
He’ll need to get even quicker laterally on defense to become a player who can not only contain, but bother elite perimeter scorers.
Scoring from the perimeter appears foreign for him; he’s an interior-based scorer who lacks the dribbling moves to break down defenders for jumpers and he looks uncomfortable shooting, even from a standstill.
Shooting mechanics need to change. Looks stiff from the line and the floor. Has solid touch on layups, so there’s some potential if he finds the right shooting instruction.
Lacks an advanced low-post game.
If he doesn’t develop as a shot creator, how much will his playmaking matter? Like Lonzo Ball, he might first need a jumper to develop as an effective pick-and-roll playmaker.
Krysten Peek, Yahoo! Sports: The Warriors will be in a win-now mode next season with Klay Thompson returning and adding a healthy James Wiseman. Barnes would be a great additional player to this Warriors team and played point-forward during his one year at Florida State. He’s a great defender with his long 6-foot-9 frame, grabbing 36 steals this past season and can be plugged in anywhere on the court. His outside shot will need some work at the next level but Barnes is the best available prospect at No. 6 and could sneak inside the top-five after pre-draft workouts.
Stephen Curry’s performance this season has the Warriors believing that their championship window hasn’t closed. The Warriors likely will shop this pick hard, as they did with the No. 2 overall pick last year, with the hopes of bringing in a veteran that can help right away. If they don’t move the pick or the lottery gods move this back into the top three where it reverts back to the Timberwolves, expect the Warriors to look for versatility and size, especially at the forward position.
Aggressive and athletic, Barnes plays with a fire and force that teams will fall in love with. At 6-foot-9 with a 7-foot-2 wingspan, he projects as a plus defender with solid court vision and playmaking skills.
Barnes is a work in progress as both a perimeter shooter and scorer and his performance in the NCAA tournament created more questions than answers, but he’s only scratching the surface.
Barnes has drawn comparisons to Draymond Green, which is high praise. If the lottery balls fall the right way, he could find himself working alongside the All-NBA defender early in his career. This would give the Warriors another ferocious defender and a potential partner to play alongside big man James Wiseman for the future.
Jon Chepkevich: Statistical best comparisons are
A quirky list to accompany a unique, odd-ball prospect. Barnes functioned as a point-forward of sorts for Florida State this season, with much of his value being derived as a creator for others and a versatile defensive stalwart.
Given this profile, it’s no surprise to see the likes of defensive menaces Dunn, Shumpert and Holiday, as well as fellow point-forward odd-ball prospect, Troy Brown. Westbrook being sandwiched in the middle may come as a bit more of a surprise, suggesting some star upside potential.
Hollinger, The Athletic: I’m really surprised Barnes isn’t getting more buzz. He could easily end up as the best player in this draft and has a case for being the top pick.
Again, the search for big wings comes first at the NBA level, and everything comes later — and the playoffs are showing why. Barnes has weaknesses, and we’ll get to them in a minute, but there is early Spurs-era Kawhi Leonard upside here as well.
For starters, for a player who is supposed to be terrible at offense, Barnes’s offensive numbers are pretty darned good. He came off the bench for a relatively slow-paced team and that muted his counting stats, but Barnes averaged 23.8 points per 100 possessions — similar to the rate of most other first-round hopefuls — and shot 56.1 percent inside the arc. Both numbers increased in ACC play when the Seminoles played their most difficult competition.
Barnes showed an ability to get all the way to the cup under his own steam, something he should be able to do much more in the open floor that the NBA offers. Even against defenders that lay off him, Barnes chews up space with huge strides and, at 6-foot-9, can finish over any guard, which allowed him to generate rim attempts despite lacking explosiveness.
Despite his huge size, Barnes loves to play defense and often checked opposing point guards. I don’t mean switches, either; this was his primary assignment. With his long arms and relentless motor, he frequently picked the dribble of ballhandlers on the perimeter. He offers the kind of switchable “checkmate” defensive answer that every team craves, possessing the size to check interior players but also the quickness and hands to switch onto any perimeter threat. All the background on him is fantastic, too.
Barnes has warts, particularly in his shooting and his lack of off-the-dribble turbo gear, and that could put a cap on his offensive upside. He doesn’t rebound well for his size and was outplayed by Michigan’s Franz Wagner in an NCAA tournament game. His downside looms if the shooting doesn’t make him playable at the end of games.
That said, I remain amazed he isn’t getting more buzz. For comparison, Patrick Williams came off the bench for Florida State a year earlier and ended up as the fourth pick in the draft, and Barnes’ tools and production dwarf Williams’. As the draft’s No. 2 on-the-ball prospect, he compares favorably to Cunningham on defense and distribution but pales next to him as a shooter.
As ever, shooting is the swing skill, and it’s why I rate Cunningham higher. Barnes’ floor is just much lower because of the shooting question. Nonetheless, I happen to think Barnes is so skilled in other respects that he’s still a useful player even if he doesn’t shoot — think a jumbo, rim-threatening version of Bruce Brown. And if he shoots even halfway decently, he has a pretty good runway to being an NBA All-Star.
Dean On Draft: #2. Scottie Barnes 6’8″ PG FSU
I have written an extensive analysis of Barnes, but the cliff notes are that he checks every box for upside in a way that we have rarely seen before. He is 6’8″ with a 7’2.75″ wingspan, and while not the most explosive athlete is fluid and agile with a good handle. He also is an exceptionally good passer for his dimensions and plays under control making good decisions with the ball.
He also had a good assist to turnover rate for any height at 1.66. For perspective, this was higher than Steve Nash’s assist:TOV ratio for his first 3 seasons at Santa Clara until his senior season edges out Barnes at 1.69.
He used his length to be disruptive defensively, and often guarded opposing PG’s, although not always well as he was prone to getting beat off the dribble and defensive lapses. He has excellent upside on defense but is currently a work in progress on that end.
His biggest question mark is his shooting as he only made 62.1% FT and 27.5% 3P for FSU. But he had a tiny sample of FTA at 41/66, and in a much bigger pre-NCAA sample he shot 67.5% (166/246) and his form doesn’t look too bad.
If he can eventually become a reliable NBA 3 point shooter and improve defensively, Barnes essentially has an uncapped upside and can make teams feel awfully bad for passing on him.
Profile from Sports-Reference.com
Wizzy’s Comps. None
NBA Draft Room Comp: Shawn Marion+
Sam Vecenie, The Athletic: Kuminga has many of the tools that NBA teams are looking for from their big wing creators. He’s an athletic wing with real shot-creation potential due to his body control and power. He’s a terrific driver who gets into the paint, and he plays really hard. He cuts well, and while he didn’t shoot it well this past season, I don’t think his shot off the catch is broken by any stretch. He also struggled a bit on defense within the construct of what the Ignite wanted to do as a team, but he has all of the tools you look for with a 7-foot-plus wingspan and real athleticism and strength. He averaged 16 points and seven rebounds in his first professional experience and profiles well as a starting wing with real All-Star upside if the shot comes around.
Kevin O’Connor, The Ringer: SHADES OF Danny Granger, Luol Deng, Jeff Green
Tantalizing athlete who has raw skills that need years of seasoning, but has every tool a patient team would look for.
Excellent physical profile with a large frame and elite athleticism.
Has elite defensive potential if he ever decides to lock in mentally and improve his fundamentals. Capable of someday shutting down smaller, quicker players if he decides to play with intensity.
Talented but raw shot creator with a fluid handle. Gets low to the floor and takes massive strides to get to the basket in one or two dribbles.
Flashes advanced shot-creation abilities with crossovers, spin moves, and hesitations; with his explosive athleticism, size, and strength, he could be a handful for any defense if his skills develop.
Good first-read passer. Can make simple dump-off passes to cutters or find the roller. Has intriguing potential as a screener who could score on the roll or locate open teammates with a pass.
Ambidextrous at-rim finisher.
Decision-making: He gets flustered when his first read isn’t available and ends up jacking a ton of contested shots instead of looking for a pass or creating a higher-quality shot for himself.
A ball stopper who needs to be better at playing within the flow of the offense.
Inconsistent shooter who’s never had good percentages despite looking comfortable and confident from deep range, both off the catch and dribble. Has subpar touch away from the basket.
Aloof defender who finds himself out of position on rotations and often doesn’t put in effort on rotations. Also bites on pump fakes.
Danny Granger, Luol Deng, Jeff Green
Hollinger, The Athletic: Kuminga is the next level of big wing shot creator in this class. Right now, he’s a good ways behind Cunningham and Barnes in terms of his ability to read the game and make plays for others, with a skill set more reminiscent of younger versions of Harrison Barnes or Andrew Wiggins.
In Kuminga’s G League stint, he showed the size and skill to dribble himself into pull-up 2s and occasionally make them. Unfortunately, he also revealed an almost unslakable thirst for this particular shot and an iffy ability to generate better ones.
Kuminga was an ineffective passer and, while a good athlete, doesn’t have the blow-by gear or wiggle that would allow him to generate easier opportunities than the ones for which he routinely settles. One area where he did seem very comfortable, however, was facing up a defender from the free throw line. From there, he could get to the basket with one dribble and finish with his size.
Kuminga has the size and lateral quickness to be the multipositional defender teams crave, (he’ll be at a disadvantage against the fastest guards … though, who isn’t?) but his instincts are miles behind. He also was a disappointingly poor rebounder for a player of this ilk. That said, he’s 6-foot-8 with some legit perimeter skill and will be one of the youngest players in the draft, with an October 2002 birthdate. (Yes, virtually every player in this draft was born this century. Sigh …. I know.)
Ht./Wt.: 6-8, 210. G League Ignite: 15.8 ppg, 7.2 rpg
Kuminga is one of the youngest players in this draft class but also one of the most physically ready for the NBA level. He led the inaugural Ignite team in rebounds, grabbing 93 boards in 13 games. He’s a ball-dominant wing who is great in isolation situations or when the shot clock is winding down. Kuminga will need to work on his shot selection at the next level, shooting only 25% from 3-point range and 39% from the field.
Boone, CBS: A hot start to the Ignite season thrust Jonathan Kuminga into the potential No. 1 pick discussion before fading down the stretch as his shooting fell back to earth and some of his offensive polish -- or lack thereof -- became more apparent. Kuminga's 6-8 frame and the fact that he won't turn 19 until October bodes well for projecting his game long-term, though, and if he develops a more consistent jumper he has the frame and physique to be a multi-time All-Star.
Jonathan Kuminga got off to a fast start in his G League career but then hit a bit of a wall and had some inconsistent play down the stretch. He finished the season with averages of 15.8pts, 7.2rbs and 2.7asts on less than stellar shooting slips of 39/25/63. He also averaged 2.6 turnovers per game while showing some of the inexperience and lack of polish we expected. He shows flashes of big time ability and has all the tools that scouts look for but his game is a still young and he has plenty of areas of improvement to work on.
He’s far from a finished product but the upside is tantalizing. His draft stock mostly comes down to whether or not you buy his outside shot and overall offensive development. He’s been mentioned all season as a lock for the top 5 but with so much talent at the top of this draft it’s possible he slides down a few spots.
Kuminga is the type of athlete that only comes a long every few years. He’s absolutely explosive off the floor and makes the rim look like a play-thing. He’s got a rock solid frame with elite quick-twitch athleticism.
His skill level is fairly advanced as well (but not yet polished), showing flashes of a really nice shot making and open court ball handling ability. At 6-7 and with that athleticism it’s really hard to guard him on the perimeter or block his shot. You have to respect his blow-by ability and so he’s able to find room to get his mid range or 3pt shot.
As his skill level develops and catches up to his athleticism, watch out! Kuminga could be a household name in a few years. He’s got the type of raw athleticism and strength that sets him apart from other prospects and is reminiscent of past high draft pick Shawn Marion but with more natural strength than Marion.
Kuminga is at his best when he puts his head down and goes to the basket, blowing by or overpowering defenders. At this point he’s more of a straight-line driver and isn’t the most creative ball-handler but considering his age he’s well on his way to developing his wing skills.
He’s also got a nice touch around the basket and can score in the post where he uses his elite athleticism to overpower defenders.
Isn’t yet a consistent 3pt shooter
Has to develop his feel for the game and making his teammates better
Needs to develop his ball handling and get more creative with his drives, since he won’t be able to overpower NBA defenders as much.
Isn’t a great FT shooter.
Shawn Marion with more bulk
bigger Jaylen Brown
NBADraft.net: NBA Comparison: Jaylen Brown
Strengths: Listed at 6’7 and 220 pounds, Kuminga is a physical force on both ends of the court … Freakish athlete with explosiveness, strength and great body control … He also has a solid skill set with the ability to handle and pass the ball … His forte appears to be on the less glamorous (defensive) end, where his quickness, strength and height can disrupt opposing wings and forwards … Kuminga has the build, speed and drive to defend positions 1-4 in the NBA … He can be used to limit a team’s primary scoring option, or as a versatile piece while switching during screens and other plays … While not a turnover forcing machine with just one steal per game, Kuminga should immediately become one of the better, more adaptable and skilled defenders in the NBA … His offensive game has similar intrigue, as he has a great handle for a player his size, and is adept at creating his own shot off of the dribble … The Elizabeth, New Jersey, native excels at driving to the rack, and can finish well in the paint, even when the defense collapses … Likes to work in the post, and can score easily especially against mismatches … Has a well-rounded offensive game, as he can knock down jumpers, penetrate and is a solid passer for his position…Is an elite transition player as well, because he has tremendous speed for his size, and out hustles other players, often leading to easy dunks … Solid scorer and rebounder, at 15.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per contest … Tremendous athleticism should raise both his floor and ceiling, and can help contribute to a greater offensive output until when/if his shooting ability develops … Is one of the youngest prospects in the draft, and is already competing at a high-level against very talented competition, and with an NBA ready body …
Weaknesses: Lacks consistency shooting … Kuminga is an incredibly talented player, and one with loads of potential, but the skill that will likely make-or-break him reaching that potential is how much he can improve upon his shooting consistency and range … He averaged just 24.6% from deep, and 62.5% from the foul line … Those numbers simply won’t cut it at the next level, and will severely limit Kuminga’s minutes and impact … Until he bumps those up, he may have to play more as a power forward, even if his best fit is at the small forward position … Lacked moves in the post, and often used the same spin move every time he got on the block … Kuminga needs more diversity in his post moves if he wants to score against bigger, stronger defenders … Can make difficult finishes, but sometimes botches easy ones … He needs to spend time developing his offensive game, as it is clear that checks every athletic and size box, but can look overwhelmed at times during games on offense … Turned the ball over as much as he assisted, and while he can make excellent passes, Kuminga also struggled with decision making …
Notes: Measured: 6’7 with a 6’11 wingspan and 217.2 lbs at the 2019 Nike Elite 100 camp …
Michael Hopp 7/13/21
Dean On Draft: Kuminga is the epitome of mystery box, as he has an excellent physical profile at aprpoximately 6’8″ with 7’1″ wingspan and good athleticism. For all intents and purposes he is a slightly bigger Jaylen Brown, and if he develops his skill level the sky is the limit for him.
The challenge for him is twofold. First, his skill level is not very good right now. He made just 24.6% 3P 62.5% FT in his G League stint, and has a loose handle that needs improvements.
He is listed as 18 not turning 19 until October. Based on that, he has reasonable odds of improving his skill set enough to be a Jaylen Brown-esque player in due time given his excellent physical tools.
But the second challenge is that it is not clear that he is actually 18 years old. He was born in Democratic Republic of Congo where only 25% of kids are born with birth certificates, and didn’t move to America until 2016 when he should have received advice to lie about his age to maximize his odds of an NBA future.
And there is a HUGE difference between 18 vs 19 vs 20, especially for a kid like Kuminga who you are betting on to make a major leap in skill level. So if he is 18, it is completely reasonable to take him in the #5-7 range as he is currently projected. But if he is 19, he takes a hit to his stock and perhaps belongs in the mid-1st. And if he is 20, he likely belongs in round 2. And if he is 21+, then he arguably does not deserve to be drafted.
Personally, I have no idea what the odds of each outcome actually are. Whatever NBA team that drafts him needs to be diligent on their intelligence regarding his age, because being wrong is very costly. For a quick and dirty estimate, let’s use Kevin Pelton’s draft pick value chart
If we say he should go #6 if 18, #15 if 19, #35 if 20, and #60 if 21+, and give 25% odds to each possibility, his respective values are 2110, 1240, 300, and 50 which average out to 925, or approximately the 21st pick in the draft.
Given that this draft is weak after the top 12, perhaps he can be bumped to the #15-20 range as a reasonable estimate. But that is pure guess work, as I have no clear info regarding his true age.
I don’t want to drop any hot takes about how he is not deserving of being drafted high, because it is unfair to him if his age is real and he gets punished for being born into a terrible situation that nobody would want to live through.
But at the same time, it would have been wise for him to lie about his age upon arrival in America, and if an NBA team is going to invest a top 10 pick in him, they should have a higher confidence in his youth than can be had based on available information.
Ultimately Kuminga is exceptionally difficult to value without any clear evidence regarding his age, and all that can be said is that he is extremely risky to take high lotto without any special intelligence that his age is likely accurate.
Vote on Twitter or post a comment (comment votes count ten times more than Twitter votes) answering two questions:
If Cade/Mobley/Green/Suggs/Barnes are off the board, and Kuminga is available at #7, do you take Kuminga or someone else ?
If Cade/Mobley/Green/Suggs/Kuminga are off the board, and Barnes is available at #7, do you take Barnes or someone else ?
And if you feel like answering extremely unlikely hypotheticals…