College basketball is in full swing and the NBA playoff race is starting to heat up, but for franchises like the Knicks, Lakers, 76ers and a few others, their attention has turned to the NBA Draft and finding their next piece to the puzzle. Therefore, we at Over The Grill are going to turn our attention to some NBA Draft Coverage with some reports on the major prospects. Last week, I looked at Mario Hezonja, the talented shooter hailing from Croatia and playing in Spain. This week, I bring you the 19 year old of of Texas, Myles Turner, who has the opportunity to play the role of a stretch four who can also block shots.
Name: Myles Turner
Current Team: Texas
Position: Power forward/ Center
Weight: 242 lbs
Age: 19 years old
Current Stats: 10.1 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 0.6 APG, 45.5% FG, 83.9% FT, 27.4% 3PFG
Projected Draft Range: 5-10
Myles Turner is a long, athletic player with potential at center and power forward in the NBA. His impressive wingspan of 7’4” allows him to send away shots at a rate of 2.6 blocks per game. Turner is a can’t miss top ten prospect with great potential as a strong center and even a stretch four, with his ability to hit 3s from time to time. His excellent jump shot will give any team that takes Turner the option of moving him out of the paint to allow drivers to get to the rim. I can see the Kings picking Turner at 6 to pair him with DeMarcus Cousins, allowing Cousins to continue to work in the paint, while Turner can operate in the mid-range area.
Turner is a great option at center or power forward with his ability to get up and grab the ball. He is excellent at finding a man, boxing out, and using his long arms to grab the ball, especially on the defensive end. He averages an impressive 9.5 defensive rebounds per 40 pace. Turner has good instincts at seeing where the ball will go after it has hit the backboard or the rim. He is a hard worker, getting to the ball. Although he is not an explosive jumper, he has the ability to get off the ground quickly. At the moment he isn’t a great offensive rebounder, but he has the ability to keep plays alive with his size and length. With a little more development and added strength, Turner can become a strong rebounder on both ends of the floor. Turner is one of the best shot blockers that will be available in the draft, already protective the rim at an NBA-level. His 9’1.5” standing reach and long wingspan make his a natural at sending shots away. Myles has excellent timing and instincts and does a great job rotating from the weak side to protect the basket. He has a very very high and quick release and a very good touch on his jump shots. Turner even has the ability to hit shots at NBA 3-point range. He is very sound mechanically, hitting 83.9% from the charity stripe and 28% from the arc. Turner has shown he can spot up, pick and pop or shoot over his right shoulder when in the post. Definitely has a lot of offensive talent.
Myles Turner lacks elite athleticism. He is not immobile, but he is not explosive either, and his lanky frame causes him to move awkwardly. He has very large feet, which, along with his physical structure, have causes some concerns over his long term durability. He lacks speed in lateral movements, which has shown this season when he gets burned on pick and rolls. Although Turner has covered 62.5% of shots at the rim, he struggles against players with length and athleticism, something that is a little concerning. He is considered thin at 242 pounds for an NBA center, and his frame doesn’t look like it has the space to fill out. He can be swallowed up in the paint, both defensively and on the glass. He likes to live on the perimeter and is happy settling for contested jumpers to avoid getting bullied down low. Turner fails to establish deep post position and does not absorb contact well. Despite Turner’s nice touch, he is still raw offensively, and has some ways to go to have a more complete game. He lacks counter moves and great footwork on the block. On top of that, Turner struggles to find his open teammates, racking up only 20 assists in 739 minutes. But this may just be because of his situation, playing on the ISO-based Texas team as the 4, so this could change when he reaches the NBA. Turner fouls quite a bit, averaging 5.1 fouls per 40 against teams that win more than half their games. He doesn’t stay with the pick and roll ball handler long enough, leading to easy drives to the basket. Turner needs to do a better job staying disciplines and not jumping for shot fakes.
Myles Turner is considered a project, but has the potential to be a top-4 in the NBA similarly to a LaMarcus Aldridge. Turner needs strength first and foremost, as he won’t get far without the ability to move NBA players out of the paint when shots go up. Turner is still learning how to defend more experienced players without fouling, but this is something that will come along as he continues to develop. His offensive ability is still considered raw, but his ceiling is very high on the offensive end. With a little work, Myles Turner can be a steal at the 6-10 pick overall. He can give a team a rare combination of rim protection and floor spacing, which, in the right system, can improve both an offense and a defense in his first year. I can see Turner being paired with an establish big man, such as DeMarcus Cousins, giving Cousins the opportunity to own the paint on offense while Turner stretches the floor, and being able to help from the weak side on defense. He would be the perfect replacement for a Jason Thompson in Sacramento.