One of the more intriguing prospects in the 2014 NBA Draft is Kyle Anderson of UCLA. A 6’9 point forward who was always going to be a very coveted prospect, but after the success of Boris Diaw for the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA, his value and stock took a serious rise, with a lot of teams a lot more interested in a player with size who can pass, run the floor and potentially do everything.
Anderson isn’t a very good athlete, but he is an excellent player with the ball in his hands. He averaged 14.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 6.5 assists last season, his sophomore year with the Bruins. His shooting, from long range and especially mid range has vastly improved and his length can help him make up for his poor athletic skills in rebounding and defending, not to mention being an elite passer with incredible vision.
All that doesn’t break out in the NBA all at once, but point forwards are hard to find. Still, Anderson isn’t projected to go anywhere before the last third of the first round. ESPN have the Miami Heat at 26 taking him, dreaming of someone who can be their Boris Diaw on the floor. However, chances are that someone else takes Anderson a lot earlier, and unless his workouts turn to be duds, don’t expect him to be taken later than the 20th pick.
Anderson, unlike other prospects, seems like a ready-now NBA player. He might not be going to make any All-Star games in the near or far future, but once he adds some muscle to his body which shouldn’t prove to be too difficult, his unique skill set will also get a strong body to cling on to.
Anderson won’t fit in with every team. He needs the ball in his hands to thrive and actually help out his team, and there aren’t a lot of teams out there willing to give a rookie that kind of responsibility outside of garbage time minutes. For a team that is hell bent on succeeding now, it might be difficult for Anderson to get those minutes, but for teams not rewarded with early picks in a loaded draft, he might be a very good solution for bench units that find it difficult scoring without any of the starters helping out.