For the second entry in prospect profiles, we go to the other end of the spectrum from the previous entry on Anthony Randolph: Where Randolph is relatively unknown, having played for a weak LSU squad, Kevin Love was on tv more than American Idol this past year with his highly ranked UCLA squad. And, we have to hope the old saying holds true: “TV adds 10 pounds”.
Kevin Love is not a long, lean “tremendous upside potential” type player (thanks, Bill Simmons), but actually a little soft around the middle and regarded as a limited potential type player due to average athleticism. The good news? He seems to be working on that, as one of the following links notes that Love has been dropping weight in preparation for the draft. Forgive me if Sean May pops to my mind along with a blaring warning siren. On to it:
(Espn Insider Required) ESPN's overview of Kevin Love – This time the “similarities” section is only one name: Bill Walton…But goes on to say “Is he just a more skilled version of Tyler Hansbrough?”
Love's freshman year stats from ESPN – Very impressive numbers, especially considering they were gathered in only 30 minutes of action a game. The number I really like? 1.68 points per shot. The Bobcats lack a player who scores with great efficiency (Emeka would be the best bet, but he shoots free throws almost as poorly as Shaq).
And his stats from kenpom.com – Now broken into percentages, his numbers suddenly look even more impressive. The 8th best defensive rebounder in the country, and 12th best offensive. Oh, and the 15th best offensive efficiency of any player in the country.
ESPN Draft Watch: The stars come out in Orlando – A duplicate link from the Randolph piece (probably will not be the last time either). Just thought the comments on his conditioning and impressive strength were worth noting.
Chad Ford watches Love workout – And was impressed. This was the article that I first saw that noted his improving physical condition.
Chad Ford and Kevin Love Talk – About life and stuff (actually about basketball).
NBADraft.net gives their thoughts on the prospect – I still laugh everytime I see a rating for intangibles on their chart. Love got an 8 in that category, based on his strong showing in anti-matter (if you are a nerd, that is funny to you because it cannot be seen either – for everyone else, I am sorry, just skip it and keep reading).
The DraftExpress.com profile Just kick me in the head: Worst Case: Sean May. Thanks guys, I really needed that.
Some youtube provided highlights:
And Kevin Love makes LeBron's commercial look silly:
Final thoughts: Kevin Love had a phenomenal freshmen season, scoring the ball inside and out effectively, while passing well for a big man. His rebounding and blocked shot numbers make him appear to be an active, athletic big man. But, in reality, he accomplished these things despite the condition of his body, not because of it. As (if) he improves his body composition, the question is, how much more can he do? And is it worth it to the Bobcats to find out? He seems that he should be at least a serviceable big man in the NBA, Brad Miller-lite, perhaps: Is that good enough for the ninth pick? Or will his weight prematurely end his career, as it may do with Sean May?
Anthony Randolph – 6'11″ PF, LSU