Earlier today, we talked about Chad Ford’s latest 2014 NBA Draft mock which had Shabazz Napier going to the Atlanta Hawks with the 15th overall pick. However, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution also had an updated mock this morning and he went with UCLA small forward Kyle Anderson:
The Hawks need help at the small forward spot for depth in shooting and defense. Anderson, who will have been in for two pre-draft workouts, would make sense. I mentioned his name to Hawks GM Danny Ferry last week. He just smiled. Didn’t say yes. Didn’t say no.
Danny Ferry’s reaction does create some interest in this choice for Atlanta Hawks fans, but that’s hardly enough information for us to assume Anderson is the guy for the team in this year’s draft. The wing is clearly the biggest need for the Hawks with Jeff Teague seemingly locked in at the point and Al Horford and Paul Millsap obvious answers down low.
DraftExpress says Anderson is a unique player on paper due to UCLA’s use of him as a primary ball handled in addition to the type of offense implemented around him:
UCLA’s Kyle Anderson is as unique as you’d expect him to be on paper. Ranking below average in scoring efficiency relative to this group due primarily to his group leading 18.7% turnover rate and group worst .87 points per possession in transition, Anderson’s status as his team’s primary ball-handler has an obvious impact on his numbers. Using only 1.4 spot up, .7 cut, .8 off screen, and 1.1 post up possessions per-game, all of which rank well below average, almost a third of Anderson’s possessions were isolations, easily the most of any player in this group, as he was charged with creating for himself and others as a sophomore. Finishing at an average 1.18 point per-shot rate inside, but showing massive improvement as a jump shooter, scoring 1.01 points per pull-up and 1.41 points per catch and shoot attempt, Anderson is yet another extremely unique small forward prospect who will be fascinating to keep track of in the coming years.
Like we’ve mentioned before, Atlanta tends to keep business in-house, so it will be difficult to know who the team is targeting until after the selection is actually made.