Pacers' Draft Possibilities: Tobias Harris

CHARLOTTE, NC - MARCH 18: Tobias Harris #12 of the Tennessee Volunteers lays the ball up in front of Stu Douglass #1 of the Michigan Wolverines in the first half during the second round of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at Time Warner Cable Arena on March 18, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

With the Draft Lottery complete, the Early Entry List set, and the NBA Draft fast approaching, it's time to examine more in depth some of the players who could be available for the Pacers. Over the next few weeks I'll be trying to put together as many profiles as possible. Instead of identifying players as specific targets for either Pacers' pick, I'm just going to cover a pool of players I think are possibilities. You'll find some players who the Pacers would likely have to trade up or down for. I've also expressed my opinion that the Pacers need to be focused on talent as much as fit so players at all five positions will be included.

These profiles are not intended to advocate for one player over another, just examine their strengths and weaknesses, and discuss in some detail what they have to offer. For each profile I provided Ten Important Statistics to guide the discussion. Today we'll be looking at:

Tobias Harris - SF/PF - 6'7.75"  223 lbs. - University of Tennessee

Ten Important Stats - Tobias Harris

Pts/40

Reb/40

Ast/40

Blk/40

2PT%

3PT%

FT%

FT/40

TO/40

USG%

20.8

9.9

1.8

1.2

49.7%

30.3%

75.3%

6.8

2.5

20.4

Current DraftExpress Projection: Round 1, Pick #18

Strengths:

  • Very versatile offensively, can score in the post, knock down perimeter jumpers, handle the ball in face-up or transition situations
  • Quicker than most power forwards, stronger than most small forwards
  • Makes good decisions with the ball, high basketball IQ
  • Saavy in taking what the defense gives him and creating quality scoring opportunities, great touch around the basket
  • Just 18 years old, one of the youngest players in the draft

Weaknessess:

  • Average athleticism, small for a power forward, may not be quick enough to defend small forwards on the perimeter
  • Versatile offensively, but doesn't excel at any one area
  • Needs to continue developing consistency with his perimeter jump shot, especially extending range out to the NBA three-point line
  • Needs defensive development

Impressions:

Long-term, Harris has the potential to fit a slew of different roles at the power forward position in the NBA. He's a tireless worker from a basketball family that simply loves to be in the gym. If he refines his consistency from the perimeter, where he already has a nice base of fundamentals to work with, he could conceivably function as a stretch-four over time.

Teams may be willing to overlook Harris's lack of upside defensively considering all that he brings to the table on the other end of the floor, especially if he's placed next to a dominant rebounding center or a three with a nose for the ball.

Overall, Harris is amongst the more intriguing forwards in this class. He'll impress in interviews and workouts with his uncommon maturity and skill level. He isn't a strong candidate to function as a top offensive option for a NBA franchise down the round, and won't be featured on many highlight reels, but he has a lot of raw tools team's look for in a complementary scorer and plenty of time to work on his weaknesses as he adapts to the pro game.

-Matt Kamalsky, DraftExpress.com
Hickory-High Comparables:

How he can help the Pacers:

The Pacers are looking for an offensive upgrade and most of Harris' value comes on that side of the ball. He's not he "alpha" scorer that appeared to be missing during the Bulls series. However, he does offer something that most of the other draft prospects lack - offensive versatility. Harris has the ability to score in a variety of ways, and therefore could be utilized in many different offensive roles. Depending on who he's paired with and matched up against he can be threat in the post, pick-and-pop, or facing up in an isolation. He is a willing passer with good court awareness and can help the offense even if he's not scoring. The ability to help the Pacers' offense in several ways could make them much less predictable at that end of the floor, and help compensate for their lack of a dominant individual scorer. He is not great defensively or on the glass, but is young and has plenty of potential for growth. Harris is someone who can help the Pacers' next season, and even more so down the road.

Video:

More Information:

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