DraftExpress rank – 20
If you like catch-and-shoot guards with good defensive instincts, Kevin Huerter just might be your guy. Outside of that, things get a little iffy with the Maryland guard, who is rumored to have a promise from a team in the first round. While he’s a good passer, he’s by no means elite moving the rock around. He can’t create his own shot, but he’s a decent finisher around the rim. Uncertainty surrounds the prospect, but what Kevin Huerter does well, he does really well.
I mean it, he’s really, really good at shooting the ball. Dare I say elite. That facet of his game is enough for the Lakers to take a good long look at him with the 25th pick, and if he’s there, it would be difficult to pass up on him.
Not enough can be said about how good looking Kevin Huerter’s shot is. His clean, high release combined with his height for a guard will allow him to make contested threes in the NBA, even over the best defenders. His range, shown off in the GIF above, is very deep. He has a great eye for the bucket and almost never hits the rim on his shots.
He’s able to hit this off-balanced shot from the corner while being smothered by his defender on the closeout. No fancy movement in getting the look either. His man cheated down to the basket and couldn’t beat Huerter’s quick release, even on a good defensive effort.
Huerter also has a nice little step back. He isn’t excellent at creating his own shots, but this shows that he has some potential in that regard. He’s able to step back with ease and his defender just isn’t able to contest the shot in time.
Overall on offense, Huerter is a bit one-dimensional. He can shoot really well, but his playmaking is lackluster and he has trouble creating for himself. One-dimensional isn’t bad in the right situation, but don’t expect him to excel in either of those categories from day one.
On defense, Huerter will have to rely on his athleticism rather than length to have an impact. He’s shown the ability to close out on perimeter shots and contest, and he can stay in front of his man more often than not. His basketball instincts will have to take over if he is to make steals in the passing lane. He’ll have to be a step ahead so that his length doesn’t put him at a disadvantage.
Here, he’s able to use his athleticism to get up and contest the shot well after it had been released by the shooter. He’s not going to be known for his defense in the NBA, but he certainly has the ability to impact the game on that side of the ball and be effective in spots.
Fit with Lakers
Huerter’s skill set fits a glaring need that the Lakers desperately need to fill: perimeter shooting. The team was second to last in three-point shooting percentage with a miserable 34.5 percent.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was supposed to fill this need for the team, but he struggled from time to time. While some other aspects of Huerter’s game may not be as well established, he can come right in and play minutes when the team needs a few quick buckets.