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NBA Draft 2016: Euro Wings That the Clippers Can Look At

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The most obvious position of need for LAC is SF. Could they address it with an international draft prospect?

In the weeks leading up to the draft, we're going to look at a lot of possible selections.  The Clippers need small forward help, and there's going to be a lot of speculation surrounding possible selections and which players will be able to contribute right away.  Today, we're going to focus on some international wings.  Timothe Luwalu and Furkan Korkmaz are not in this grouping because they are included in other articles. Please note that analysis of these players is largely secondhand after reading and watching scout video from a variety of sources (mainly those listed in the tables), and then compiling and summarizing.

These players might be best suited as draft-and-stash prospects, although there's always the chance that a team brings them over right away.  Either way, it's useful to know who's in the talent pool to predict where certain players will go, and how far certain players will drop.  For example, the Clippers pick at 25, sandwiched by Philadelphia (24 and 26), and following Boston (23).  Both the Sixers and Celtics have tons of picks and could be looking for international draft-and-stash guys.  They could also be relatively cheap options for trading up if the right prospect starts to slide into the Clippers' range.

Juan Hernangomez

Projections:
Source Draft Express Mock Draft Express Big Board Bodner USAT Mock Kevin O'Connor Big Board Kevin O'Connor Mock Tankathon.com Mock
Ranking 25 26 27 23 19 35

While Hernangomez is gettable for the Clippers, he probably isn't going to be best at small forward.  Rather, he has the game of a stretch 4 and presently lacks the lateral quickness and some of the perimeter skills necessary to be a full-time 3.  Right now, he might be best-suited as a draft-and-stash guy, because while DraftExpress says he has the long-term potential to play both forward spots, he isn't ready for it now, and he certainly does not seem ready to play NBA defense.

Isaia Cordinier

Projections:
Source Draft Express Mock Draft Express Big Board Bodner USAT Mock Kevin O'Connor Big Board Kevin O'Connor Mock Tankathon.com Mock
Ranking 39 39 Not 1st Round 41 Not 1st Round 27

Cordinier is another example of how volatile the lower section of this draft is--he's in Tankathon's first round, and not even on O'Connor's current 45-man big board.  At  just 19 years old, he's not yet ready for the NBA, but the tools are there.  Mike Schmitz from DraftExpress has him pegged as an attractive draft-and-stash option due to his athleticism and all-around skills.  Those skills--his shooting, defending, ball-handling, and passing--aren't at an NBA level yet, but they're all promising.

Paul Zipser

Projections:
Source Draft Express Mock Draft Express Big Board Bodner USAT Mock Kevin O'Connor Big Board Kevin O'Connor Mock Tankathon.com Mock
Ranking 43 43 Not 1st Round 44 Not 1st Round 43

Zipser, while ranked the lowest of the three by DraftExpress, might be the best for the Clippers' immediate needs.  The Bayern Muenchen combo forward has the versatility to play on the wing, and is above 40% from three this season.  O'Connor states that Zipser is capable of defending multiple positions and is good both on and off the ball, although his moderate athleticism could limit him against NBA talent.  Furthermore, while he's limited offensively, he plays within himself, and has a stellar shot.  The ceiling seems to be a better Wesley Johnson--he doesn't do anything but defend and shoot threes, but he's better at defending and better at shooting threes.  However, there's always the chance that at a higher level the shot doesn't translate and the defensive intensity isn't sufficient.  Overall, he could be a decent gamble for the Clippers at 33, especially if they don't select a SF with the 25th pick.