Here are some grades from around the interwebs on the Clippers’ draft last night. As expected, the results vary quite a bit.
11-Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: A
13-Jerome Robinson: C-
SB NBA flagship writer Ricky O’Donnell loved the Shai pick, praising his defense, playmaking, and finishing, but was less certain on Jerome, who he thinks will give back as many points as he scores.
Jonathan Tjarks brings very similar comments to O’Donnell. He thinks SGA is the most well-rounded of the top point guard prospects, and will be the Clippers’ point guard of the future. While he likes Jerome’s shooting and pick and roll coverage, he’s skeptical of his defense and ability to play without the basketball.
Shai gets a lower grade here than previous articles, as the writer is skeptical of his shot translating to the NBA. Once again, however, Shai’s defense is sung to the stars. The Jerome Grade is interesting because the author (Adam Fromal) actually thinks he’s a strong value at 13 due to his scoring ability, but marks him down for the redundancy of position with Shai and with the Clippers’ current roster. I don’t think that’s fair: the Clippers are building for the future, and the rest of their roster will be reshaped around SGA and Jerome, not the other way around.
Chris Stone of SN likes Shai as a great fit at point guard, but feels Jerome could have been taken later in the draft. Again, the yin and yang is mentioned regarding Robinson: efficient scoring, questionable defense.
Jeremy Woo feels that SGA was one of the most coveted players in the draft, and the Clippers did well to move up and grab him. He also thinks Robinson was a bit of a reach at 13, but believes he’s an ideal complimentary fit next to SGA, and has heard nothing but love about his intangibles.
Generally speaking, Shai’s selection got rave reviews from nationwide draft pundits and writers. His versatility, defense, and playmaking are seen as fantastic fits with the Clippers’ roster and ethos. Jerome’s marks were a bit shakier, but the good news is that his scoring and shooting ability are consistently praised. The concerns with him are defensively, so if he can straighten that out, the Clippers should have a very good player indeed. And both SGA and Jerome, as I’ve mentioned several times already, are considered by one and all to be outstanding people and teammates. That matters, as it should make them very easy to root for. Welcome to the Clippers!