Why Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is the 50th Best Player in the NBA

Throughout the offseason, we’ll be counting down the Top 50 players in the NBA from 50 to 1. Who will just miss the cut? Which names do you expect to see? Regardless, you’ll be able to find them all right here.

Why He’s Great: He’s probably the best Stephen Curry defender on Earth. He’s bigger than most point guard defenders (at 6’5” Klay Thompson is the only one with a significant advantage among the elites), allowing him to contest shots while giving himself enough breathing room to protect against drives. But that size doesn’t come at the expense of speed. He can keep up with anyone in the NBA. There’s no other guard in the NBA you’d want against Russell Westbrook or John Wall on a fast break.

He shot 35 percent from three-point range last season and 34.5 percent in 2014-15. That’s below average, but it’s more than playable. If KCP continues to grow defensively and eventually becomes an offensively playable Tony Allen, then he’s a max player without any doubts. Anyone who excels on one end of the three-and-D spectrum and passes in another will draw consideration for the top 50. Especially when they’re young enough to grow during the season.

Why He’s Below No. 49 (Danny Green): This is Green’s problem too, but KCP doesn’t do much beyond his three-and-D duties. He’ll never be a useful pick-and-roll ball-handler. Or, have any noteworthy point guard skills for that matter. That’s ok, he’s not a point guard and nobody is asking him to be one. But we’re comparing him to the best players in the league, and most of them can dribble. KCP is growing in that regard, but he still has a ways to go. Green never added that skill, and that’s why this pair is stuck at the bottom of the list.

Both KCP and Green are inconsistent shooters, the difference lies in where their inconsistency falls on the three-point scale. KCP is a 35 percent shooter at best who falls into the low 30s. Danny Green is a 40 percent three-point shooter who sometimes falls into the mid-30s and has bad games. A bad Danny Green is essentially what Caldwell-Pope is now. It helps that Green is a Spur, but it’s not like his shooting motion would suddenly change if he were traded to another team.

Finally, Green’s size makes him a bit more versatile in the current climate. He can switch more readily onto forwards. KCP can in certain match-ups, but he’s best at chasing point guards. You’d rather have him long-term, but Danny Green is better at this very moment.

Throughout the offseason, we’ll be counting down the Top 50 players in the NBA from 50 to 1. Who will just miss the cut? Which names do you expect to see? Regardless, you’ll be able to find them all right here.

Why He’s Great: He’s probably the best Stephen Curry defender on Earth. He’s bigger than most point guard defenders (at 6’5” Klay Thompson is the only one with a significant advantage among the elites), allowing him to contest shots while giving himself enough breathing room to protect against drives. But that size doesn’t come at the expense of speed. He can keep up with anyone in the NBA. There’s no other guard in the NBA you’d want against Russell Westbrook or John Wall on a fast break.

He shot 35 percent from three-point range last season and 34.5 percent in 2014-15. That’s below average, but it’s more than playable. If KCP continues to grow defensively and eventually becomes an offensively playable Tony Allen, then he’s a max player without any doubts. Anyone who excels on one end of the three-and-D spectrum and passes in another will draw consideration for the top 50. Especially when they’re young enough to grow during the season.

Why He’s Below No. 49 (Danny Green): This is Green’s problem too, but KCP doesn’t do much beyond his three-and-D duties. He’ll never be a useful pick-and-roll ball-handler. Or, have any noteworthy point guard skills for that matter. That’s ok, he’s not a point guard and nobody is asking him to be one. But we’re comparing him to the best players in the league, and most of them can dribble. KCP is growing in that regard, but he still has a ways to go. Green never added that skill, and that’s why this pair is stuck at the bottom of the list.

Both KCP and Green are inconsistent shooters, the difference lies in where their inconsistency falls on the three-point scale. KCP is a 35 percent shooter at best who falls into the low 30s. Danny Green is a 40 percent three-point shooter who sometimes falls into the mid-30s and has bad games. A bad Danny Green is essentially what Caldwell-Pope is now. It helps that Green is a Spur, but it’s not like his shooting motion would suddenly change if he were traded to another team.

Finally, Green’s size makes him a bit more versatile in the current climate. He can switch more readily onto forwards. KCP can in certain match-ups, but he’s best at chasing point guards. You’d rather have him long-term, but Danny Green is better at this very moment.

 

Source:

https://thesportspost.com/nba-top-50-kentavious-caldwell-pope/

 

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