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Jaden Ivey Scouting Report: The Boilermakin' Bullet


Well, as the wait continues for 2022 prospects to be released, I thought I would take the initiative and unveil my thoughts on my current #1 overall prospect in the 2022 NBA draft. I realize it's a lot, but the way I look at it is that big boards should help people understand the draft more, and if it takes a lot of words to get there, so be it. This, this is just a taste, my treatment of Jaden Ivey is the norm, not the exception. The odds are that I'll have a lot to say about your favorite prospect as well. Not planning to release any more of these until I can release them in bulk with the 2022 prospects on my board, so you'll have to make do with this tease. Enjoy!

Jaden Ivey

-6'4, 6'9 WS, 200 LBS

-2/13/2002

The Rundown:

Perhaps my favorite of the consensus highly ranked prospects this year. Jaden Ivey is an absolute joy to watch, on both ends of the floor. On offense, he is ALREADY an All-Star level slasher, easily one of the best slashing prospects I have seen. To make this point clear, let's think of everything necessary for an ideal slashing guard prospect. Long arms for finishing, strength for drawing and absorbing contact, burst for getting past a man. Ivey gets the highest marks in each category. He attacks the rim as if it killed his Grandma, and the defenders are relegated to passersby. The constant fear in the hearts of the defense that Ivey will catapult himself at the basket opens up the rest of his game as well. His gravity at the hoop is cosmic, and he works best when the shooters around him are constantly moving, like a planet and its moons. His defenders tend to back up and let him shoot, because even though that shot isn’t terribly inefficient, it is so much better for defenders than a determined, slashing Jaden Ivey.

His swing skills however, is where it is decided whether Ivey is lottery level, or generational. He needs 1 of his shooting or playmaking to be dominant, and neither are there yet. His passing is great, better than the 3.3 assists per game he is getting as of now (his turnovers are probably worse than the 2.3 indicates as well but so be it). He doesn’t have the most advanced understanding of players movement at this moment, and sometimes he is a little slow to take advantage of windows, and that needs to develop. He isn’t a tactician on offense in the pick and roll, he tends to take up the more simplistic bull in a china shop strategy. However, when he is in a rhythm, he has his head on a swivel, perfectly taking advantage of all the openings he creates, a stark contrast from last year, when it seemed as if he decided whether to shoot or pass the second he began to drive to the rim. His shot isn’t broken, not by any means! It isn’t fair to expect him to continue to shoot 46% from three, but his indicators are solid. Ivey has great touch in the paint, with a fluid enough shooting motion. To be sure though, his free throws could be better. and he has some bad misses (indicates lack of a repetitive form). Sometimes he rushes it on pull ups, but his shot has a ton of versatility, be it off the catch or the dribble, from three or midrange. I think it isn’t entirely improbable for both to pan out, in fact I am betting that both will be strong components of his NBA attack, but teams could be wary at the moment.

On the other end of the floor, Ivey is also very impressive. His on ball defense is tenacious, using his strength and wingspan to smother opposing players. I do not highly value guard defense, it is more of a “gravy” skill (one that is added onto a great prospect, can’t be the main selling point) but Ivey is still quite tantalizing. His wingside rim protection from the guard spot is very impressive, he seems to take great joy in rotating over from the corner and giving the driving opponent a jumpscare. He does tend to rely a bit too much on freak physicals at this point in his defensive development, especially on a Purdue team that doesn’t have the greatest on ball perimeter initiators outside of himself but I expect that once the athleticism of his opponents increase and as he is pushed into the deep end, he will have no trouble swimming. Off ball offensively is a solid picture but nothing special. He is a good cutter, violent in his attacks, but his spot up name needs to increase or the ball dominance of his attack will become predictable, and ball dominant guards rarely lead to championship level teams, especially ones that don’t have an elite handle or finishing package with his left hand. At the end of the day, Ivey is a legitimate player of the year candidate, on a team that is decidedly not built to maximize his strengths. Once he gets to faster pace and insane space of the big leagues, his game will be amplified.

I call him a bullet for a reason. Devilishly fast with destructive potential whenever he is set loose, can be used for attack or defense, and acts like deceleration is simply not an option. While there may be more surgical players, carefully dissecting the game with their little scalpel, a word to the wise; don't bring a knife to a gun fight.

Synopsis:

Dominant slasher and guard defender, intriguing weakside rim protector that could bring versatility, must become an elite shooter or playmaker but either or both developing to that level is very feasible, with improvements probably coming through left hand development or catch and shoot growth.

Comparison:

Dwayne Wade

Thanks for checking this out! If you have any thoughts or questions be sure to leave them below!


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