Derrick Williams is shooting up many experts’ draft boards with stellar play so far this season, and rightfully so. The Arizona sophomore has upped his scoring and rebounding totals from his freshman year, and is raising his level of play across the board.
Leading Arizona to the Elite Eight surely doesn’t hurt his value as a leader and proven competitor. With William’s entry in the draft official, we can all start debating why/why not he should be the top pick of the draft.
NBA Position: Power Forward
Williams had a stellar freshman season, and has shown steady growth and improvement in his sophomore season. Williams is a long, strong forward who can post up or shoot facing the basket. He’s even developed a solid perimeter game and can take his man out to the three and drain it at the college level (currently shooting over 70% from three). Has solid athleticism and explosiveness. Williams is a very smart player, using his body, pump fakes, and angles to get off clean shots inside. Is a solid rebounder at the college level and tough inside. Is very crafty and can lure his man into making foolish mistakes. His cerebral attribute allows him to get to the basket with ease, and draw fouls more than the average post player. His defense isn’t perfect, but he bodies his man well, and avoids foul trouble. Overall, Williams is a very sound big man with loads of potential.
His main knock is his lack ideal height and bulk, but at 6’9”, that shouldn’t be a huge problem at the next level. Like most rookies, he’ll have to hit the gym and get bigger and stronger, but his size and toughness is already above average. Not quite as fluid as you’d like, and doesn’t have an elite handle (even for a big man). Doesn’t have elite court vision, which makes him a weak passer in the post. When he gets the ball, it’s like a black hole; it rarely comes out, and when it does, the results aren’t always great. Improving his court awareness and passing ability from the post is a must. Overall, most of his weaknesses are small flaws that can be corrected with training and hitting the gym.
NBA Player Comparison: Michael Beasley
Draft Projection: Top 10