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Cam Whitmore scouting report 1/20/23


Athleticism

  • Cam is a freakish athlete. He's one of the youngest freshmen in the class, yet is super well built with a 6'7'', 225 pound frame. He uses this strength really well to get into contact finishes, wall up against drives defensively, and play through the overall physicality of the game.

  • Height may be illegitimate however; difficult to believe Cam is 6'7.'' I'd guess he's 6'6''.

  • Vertical plane athleticism is elite; can jump in stride with one foot. Playing off of two feet is constantly taught at Villanova and Cam is already at an advanced level in that regard.

  • Lateral quickness/flexibility seems solid, seems to have a + wingspan, has good shift and flexibility in his hips for several areas, ELITE first step, solid burst overall to generate rim pressure, good athletic traits across the board.

Driving/Finishing

  • Elite hangtime on his finishes.

  • Makes some freakish dunks running the floor in transition.

  • Jumps off one or two feet and gets elevation on rim protectors.

  • Should be a pretty good finisher off two feet considering he's playing at Villanova.

  • Awesome, awesome cutter, super efficient finishing off of those.

  • Has some shifty misdirection moves to get downhill.

  • Could definitely be the beneficiary of a primary creator in an offense, as he picks up a ton of speed off a kickout pass/attacking the closeout. Simply elite when he can just put his head down, take a couple dribbles to the rim, and dunk.

  • Could see inverted PNRs being a frequent playtype for him at the next level, understands how to use and reject screens and use a screen to get downhill already at a high level, though not necessarily a polished PNR operator.

  • Needs to use his elite strength at a more consistent level but the foundation is there for him being a foul machine.

Playmaking

  • Handle is super interesting given his age/size. Executes some perimeter moves that have a ton of potential to help him capitalize his athleticism, but similar to his decision making, it's not completely polished at the moment.

  • Looser handle, so he can get stripped with some on ball steals when he's careless. Don't trust him the most to expertly dribble around traffic quite yet; would rather coach him to use his athletic gifts to perfection.

  • Seems to have a score first mentality. Some interesting playmaking flashes, but unsure if he's experienced enough in this regard to be that primary creator.

  • Has shown flashes making the right read when drawing multiple defenders, nothing crazy yet, which is fine.

  • Hoop Intellect brought up a good point, he has been slipping a lot, perhaps it is a shoe traction issue on these decelerations.

Shooting

  • Shooting is the area where many star hyping Cam up as this top 5 picks. Has some pretty impressive shot diversity considering his athletic potential and how young he is.

  • Had a thumb injury so that's a disclaimer for any analysis here.

  • Seems to have a solid high release that won't need too much adjusting at the next level; form for the most part checks out.

  • I expect him to spend a lot of his days in the NBA lurking around the corner, where he can hit the three, make a backdoor cut, or finish off a lob/putback.

  • Really fearless shooter with a hand in his face, there are some super impressive difficult shot making flashes.

  • Think the low percentage has been about the degree of difficulty of his jumpers. Has a really interesting stepback to the side, uses that between the legs misdirection hop to the side often, where he sells the move really well with his body.

  • Overall, there's some real potential for Whitmore in this regard. I'm not the highest because I'm not sure his off the dribble jumper shot diet will bear as much as say, AJ Griffin. But to have some versatility in his bag is a massive +.

Defense

  • Shows flashes of being an elite defender with good lateral mobility, strength to wall up and be physical (key, underrated trait that defines lockdown defenders like Smart and Holiday), and versatility to defend multiple positions/switch.

  • Solid length to contest shots.

  • Throughout his high school and Villanova playing days, has been the perimeter defender in a PNR and the big defender, and shown some maturity and skill in this area. Nice versatility to have.

  • Potential for weak side rim rotations, the defensive decision making isn't perfect however. Low block rate and block numbers may be a slight concern for his defensive outlook.

  • Pretty aggressive jumping the passing lanes, sometimes for better or worse, fouls defensively at times, but also is capable of turning defense into offense.

  • Overall don't expect Cam to be an elite defender, but as he begins to understand how to utilize his athletic tools and hone in on his defensive technique, he'll have awesome utility as a versatile defensive Swiss Army Knife who can play on/off the ball.

Final Thoughts

I've lowered my evaluation on Cam a bit with this Villanova season. I think his elite finishing and advanced driving ability will make him a very useful NBA player offensively, as long as he's at least a decent shooter, and I believe in him being an above average player defensively. But I don't project any primary creator stuff because he likely won't develop elite playmaking. However, as a second side creator Cam will be elite, and his versatility will be appreciated on NBA teams. So, I think Cam is a lock to be in the top 10, and likely in at least the borderline range for top 5 pick.

Comps:

  • Aaron Gordon

  • Miles Bridges

  • Mitch Richmond

  • AJ Griffin (excluding playstyle)


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