The San Antonio Spurs are finally into the second round of the playoffs after a six-game sparring session with the Memphis Grizzlies and are now focused on to the Houston Rockets. A deeper playoff run means we are getting closer to the NBA Draft and that means we have to become more familiar with potential draft picks for the team whether that’s late in the first round or second. This week’s draft prospect to watch is Vanderbilt’s Luke Kornet. Here are some of his measurables:
- 7’1”, 250 pounds
- 13.2 PPG, 2.0 BPG, 6.2 RPG
- 40.6 FG%, 32.7 3P%, 85.7 FT%
- PER of 20.1 with a 22.7% usage rate
- Defensive rating of 99.4 and an offensive rating of 112.9
He is an excellent shot blocker and could play the role of rim protector for the Spurs despite not being quite athletic — which is pretty difficult at that size anyway. He was named to the SEC All-Defensive Team twice in his career, so even if he is a streaky shooter at times, he can get on the floor via his defense.
While Kornet’s offense can use some work and he could stand to gain some strength, his ability to stretch the floor can’t be overlooked and should be seen as a huge upside to his game. He will need some time as a likely second-rounder to polish his game, but the Austin Spurs should provide the perfect outlet for that. He will need to become a more consistent low post scorer and overall shooter if he wants to make his way onto the San Antonio roster and stay there.
Kornet would be a nice pick late in the second round where the Spurs are likely to pick and could turn out to be a solid Pau Gasol replacement down the line. This pick would probably be made only if the team knows certain big men are leaving and they need an immediate and cheap replacement they know will play right away. That’s opposed to drafting and stashing away a potential European player who the Spurs may not see for years or even ever for that matter.