When NBA teams look at 2nd round and undrafted players the most important question they should be asking is: what NBA skills do they have? And can these skills be developed? It’s actually incredibly simple and some teams have been able to master this process like the Miami Heat, Golden State Warriors, and Oklahoma City Thunder.
Below are some prospects that I think teams will take a chance on because they have NBA level skills that you can plug in and develop over the course of a few seasons.
Brandon Murray – Georgetown
Murray is a perfect example of a do-it-all kind of player. At 6’5″ 225 lbs., Murray is a stout defender with the ability to switch 1-4. He’s also a prolific playmaker and underrated scorer, as he produces 14.5 PPG/4 RPG/3.5 APG on a struggling Georgetown team. Murray is a Sophomore transfer from LSU where he played a supporting role on an NCAA Tournament team last year and exceled as a defender, connector, and energy wing. I envision this role for Murray in the NBA where he can play more off the ball and focus on being a secondary ballhandler and high-impact defender. With his high basketball IQ and athleticism, Murray could be a steal in the 2nd round.
Oso Ighodaro – Marquette
Active, energetic, athletic. Ighodaro has all your typical traits you look for in a backup NBA big. But the unique aspect of his game that might get him even more looks and possibly turn him into an NBA starter is his passing ability as a big guy. Shaka Smart and Marquette have put Ighodaro in pro situations where he is making passes off of dribble-handoffs and from the elbow. That is a skill that NBA teams drool over. Pair that with his switchability from the 5 and you are looking at a player that has some serious potential. Ighodaro is averaging 12 PPG/6 RPG/3.5 APG on 66% from the field – all on a winning team that can make a serious run in March. Watch out for Oso.
Ousmane N’Diaye – Senegal
The first thing that stands out for N’Diaye is his size and length of 6’11” at the 3/4 spot. That right there is intriguing for scouts but his mobility on the perimeter paired with ballhandling and smooth stroke is where you get NBA teams attention. N’Diaye has all the pieces to be a contributor at the NBA level, but it will take commitment and development from an NBA team to get him there. He lacks a little bit of strength when finishing through contact and playing post defense, but developing a strong floater would be killer with his size on offense. With N’Diaye’s body control at his size, the sky could be the limit as he fills out and works on the little things in his game. I would take a chance on him in the 2nd round, hell, maybe even the late 1st round.