Beyond the Lottery: Tony Wroten

University of Washington freshman combo-guard Tony Wroten declared for the 2012 NBA Draft on April 3rd. The 6’5” Pac-12 Freshman of the Year played in all of the Huskies’ 35 games this past season and averaged 16 ppg. The Seattle native was the first Washington freshman to be named to the first team All-Pac-12. And Wroten joined Detlef Schrempf (1985) as the only UW ballers to post 500 points, 150 boards and 100 dimes in a season.

Wroten’s offensive skills make him virtually unstoppable when he wants to attack the hoop. Wroten possesses a great crossover, first step, and he finishes well in the lane. He also led the Huskies in free throw attempts and makes, which should translate well to the pro game. He makes the smart pass but is not afraid to thread the tight needle to cutters or to throw the alley-oop. When Wroten plays off the ball he is an active, sharp cutter and gobbles up offensive rebounds.

Wroten led UW in steals with 1.9 per game. He has above average strength, size, length and instincts on D. He can guard both the 1 and the 2 spots, and with added muscle and maturity he may be able to someday lockdown the small forward position. Wroten has active hands and disrupts and deflects lots of balls. He understands and practices help-side D. When motivated he can smother an opposing player and take him out of the game.

19-year-old Wroten is projected to go in the bottom third of the first round on June 28th in Newark. Like most of the NBA these days, Wroten is young and will be gathering the experience necessary to compete at the pro level while in Mr. Stern’s league. With his superior body and athleticism, Wroten takes chances and plays overconfident at times. A southpaw, he has a lot of work to do on his right-hand dribbling and finishing. And he needs to improve his outside shot. Look at his development and maturity over the next few years to see if he can effectively contribute night-in and night-out at the pro level.

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