2023 NBA Mock Draft: Spurs land franchise PG, tanking pays off for Pistons
I notably started the draft cycle much lower on Amen Thompson, and his brother Ausar for that matter, than the large majority of draft analysts. But, while I still have some concerns about both players, I’ve warmed up considerably to both brothers after watching extensive film on their games in the Overtime Elite.
My concern when it came to Amen’s game was his jump shot and, sadly, 25% from three and 66% from the free-throw line doesn’t instill a ton of confidence that his shot will come around in a meaningful way even with his flashes of good touch. But where he falls short in the shooting department, he makes up for it and then some with his explosive athleticism and hyper-talented playmaking ability. Collapsing opposing defenses and finding open shooters on the perimeter is Amen’s bread and butter and it worked out well for him, as he averaged 5.9 assists per game as the City Reapers’ lead guard.
When it comes to lead guard prospects—particularly ones that aren’t elite shooters—rim pressure is king, and Amen will provide that in excess. If his playmaking and touch around the rim translate to the NBA, he will already be a dangerous offensive weapon. If his jump shot can improve to even average efficiency, we could be looking at one of the highest-upside players in the class.