Curtis Jerrels: 6-1, 200, PG, Sr. (Baylor University)
Draft rank: #46
PG rank: #16
Very creative and crafty point guard. Likes to penetrate and find his teammates. A leader on the floor that will talk to his teammates and let them know what they should be doing. Can hit the outside shot. Can take his man down into the post and use his strength if necessary. Really knows how to use the pump fake and the jab step to get by his man and get into the lane. Also uses his body to shield defenders and get the ball to his teammates. Likes to pass with both hands. Does a very good job of using picks at the top of the key to head left or right and go right into his jump shot. Will bull his way into the paint and has the ability to finish with either hand once he gets there. Does a great job of misdirection to gain space so that he can rise into his jumper. Does a good job of using his dribbles to head north to south rather than east to west. Has very good hesitation moves. Has been consistently productive in all four years at Baylor. Gets his hands on a lot balls defensively. Has good scoring ability off the dribble.
Sometimes pounds the ball for too long. Doesn’t use his arms to be an active defender. Presses the ball on offense and sometimes tries to do too much for his team. Doesn’t have the explosiveness or quickness that NBA starting point guards have. Often forces shots and doesn’t shoot for a good percentage for a point guard. Turns the ball over too much, especially when trying to get into the lane. Doesn’t have great leaping ability. Lacks lateral movement when he is guarding quicker point guards and sometimes becomes flat footed on defense. Isn’t particularly good in the transition.
There is no doubt that Jerrels likes to have the ball in his hands and direct traffic, which is important for a point guard. He has a confidence about him that allows him to take big shots at the end of the game. Jerrels has a no quit attitude on the court and continues to play hard even when his team is down.
Comparison: Derek Fisher, 6-1, 200 PG
The biggest issue for Jerrels is that he is just average at just about everything. He doesn’t have great quickness, passing or shooting ability that teams look for in a point guard. He is a solid but I am just not sold on the idea that he can be a player at the next level. Jerrels certainly knows how to play and at the very least will have a career abroad but he will really have to work on his shot and become a reliable shooter if he wants to stick.
He has a similar game to another lefty in Derek Fisher, but Fish has always been a consistent shooter and has always taken great pride on defense. Jerrels should try to model his game after Fisher’s, but I am afraid that he may have to go abroad to work on his game and hopefully he can work his way back over. Fisher’s college numbers actually are very similar to Jerrels and they have almost the exact same build. Surely, I don’t see him as having as long or productive career as Fisher, but I do think he reminds me of him.
Look for Jerrels to either go in the 2nd round or possibly go undrafted. I think due to the depth at point guard in this year’s draft and the need for teams to cut back on payroll and possibly go to 13 roster spots, I am not sure how attractive of a 2nd round pick he is. His upside is limited but he surely has the skills to become a decent backup if he continues to improve on his solid college career.