Name: Marcus Smart
Position: Point Guard
From: Oklahoma State
Height: 6’4″ (with shoes)
Weight: 227 pounds
The first thing that sticks out regarding Marcus Smart is his size. While the height is slightly above average for his position, he’s an absolute load at nearly 230 pounds. He uses that strength to his advantage on the floor, and that combined with his extremely long arms give him the ability to be an absolute defensive terror at the next level. A player of his size can feasibly guard any of the three wing spots. For a guard he’s an exceptional rebounder and has shown a knack for getting his hands into passing lanes, as well.
On offense, he thrives by forcing his way into the paint and getting easy buckets for himself. He was able to completely overmatch smaller college defenders, but his NBA counterparts will obviously provide more resistance. He paces himself very well when working off the pick-and-roll, and his decision-making improved from his freshman to his sophomore season. He draws fouls at a high rate, which is big for a guy that isn’t an elite shooter.
Smart plays the game with a fiery passion that teams will love. He seems to be a natural leader, and the type of player that thinks he’s always the best player on the floor. The tenacity with which he plays would seem to bode well for his chances at success at the next level.
As is the case with plenty of young players, Smart’s shooting isn’t quite where it needs to be. By no means is he a “bad” shooter, but oftentimes he’d force a low-percentage look rather than either moving the ball or finding a better shot. He wasn’t much of a threat from three-point range, which obviously presents a problem with the NBA’s deeper three-point arc. A lack of trust in his teammates at Oklahoma State possibly contributed to his poor shot selection at times, which is something that defenses will likely look to exploit. When his shot isn’t falling on a given night, he’s prone to brutal inefficiency.
Sometimes his intensity can get him into trouble, as we’ve seen. Most famously, there was the incident last season in which he pushed a fan at Texas Tech, leading to a suspension. He likely didn’t help his overall draft stock by deciding to return to school for a second season, though he did improve in some areas.
Smart is lottery-bound, though he may go closer to No. 10 than No. 1. He compares favorably to Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry in terms of style of play. They have the type of on-court aggression and reckless abandon that teams love, though Smart is quite a bit bigger.