I will say that at first I thought he was all hype.After the last week and doing research and watching videos on him and other players.He should easily go third.I can only hope the hawks make another bad draft choice.Hopefully he will fall to fourth and the gizz grow a brain and pick him.
Just remember that in those clips we was playing against weaker players, and doing drills that he does over and over again so that he can show his skills. They did the same thing with Darko in workouts. The stuff that you saw was planned out and he had been training to do. The key with most of these athletic, 7-0 international forwards is how well they understand the game and the type of decisions they make in game situations. Darko could run up and down the court and dribble the ball which made teams get all excited, but as you saw early in his rookie year, he actually didn't have very good hands with all the missed passes and missed easy shots.
The other key with Jianlian is his age. If he is really only 19 then the sky is the limit. If he is 21, then he still has a lot of potential because his actual basketball age is still young, but not as much. The way I look at it is if he is 19 then he probably has the basketball IQ of maybe a 16 year old American player. That puts him right there with the best players in his basketball age, but it also means it will take him a few years before he is ready. I say if he is 20 by the end of the year, a year in the NBA would have him about as ready as a rookie out of HS for his second season. If he is 21, then he probably has the basketball IQ of a senior in HS, and while that still puts him among the better 18 year olds in America, it doesn't make him as special.
With all that said, I still think he is the 4th or 5th best prospect in the draft with Al Horford fighting with him for that 4th spot. I do believe he will be a special player, and if he fits the Hawks style of play then it might be worth the risk to see if he can turn into an athletic center (I never get to see them, so I don't know much about the team). The only thing I don't see happening is the owners paying Smith, Childress, and those guys to continue to lose while the wait for Jianlian to develop. Because drafting guys based on potential just leads to another top pick next year, and the year after because some guys don't get re-signed, and it is just a cycle. You can only have so much young potential which you will never be able to pay for when they break out. The Bulls have found that out with Chandler and Curry needing to be moved, and Deng, Hinrich, Duhon, and Gordon who will all want to be paid well. The key to the NBA seems to be role players and guys like Bowen, Prince, and Haslem who know their role, and don't earn huge contracts.
I dont think DARKO was nearly as developed at this point in his career.He was younger.Also was not the mvp of his league and did not dominate.Yi has won I think two championships and and been to a third.He dominates his competition you cant fault him for being better.Look at Pau Gasol he dominated his league.He did the same things as Yi.He was gambled on at the third pick.Now he is the grizzlies all time leader in almost every category.Al horford looks like he has already peaked.Might average 12 and 8 for his career.Yi could give you those same numbers or could be as good as he looks.I mean imagine pau and dirk playing together.Yeah not that tough of a line but damn near unstoppable on offense.
Darko was also playing in a tougher part of the world. China isn't very good in basketball. Darko's leauge wasn't great, but I am sure it is well ahead of Yi's. Plus the thing about Darko being younger is a negative thing for Yi. If Yi is even close to peaking, then he would be lucky to be Darko. And I could be wrong, but I don't think Pau or Dirk got over 12ppg before they came to the NBA.
My main point is that it is very hard to predict how international players will do in the NBA based on their leauge games and the workout drills they do. The game is just so different in these other leagues. You see guys that come to the NBA that played well in the Euroleague and do nothing the NBA, and vice versa. In college you have a much more controlled environment, and even though you will still have the Olowkandi's, I think people even on this board have a pretty good idea of what kind of skills, mental toughness, and potential a college player will bring to the NBA.
And I still want to say that I think Yi will be one of the international players that make it. I think he has the potential to be Gasol kind of player in terms of how good he is, not style of game.
the only player they should take is mike conley. they have like 4-5 forwards on they team who were top picks in the draft and your going to draft another one. if they dont draft conley they will truely suffer for more years to come.
Nowitzki made much more thn 12 ppg,but it was a minor league in germany...
but he played against charles barkley on a euro camp,and i still can remember the look on barkley`s face,when he played against dirk.
In an interview with german tv,10 years ago, a sweating barkley said,that "this guy(dirk) is one of the best young players he ever saw".
Ok well Yi looks promising.At worst he comes in and maybe gets around 9 a game and like five bounds.At best he averages over 15 and like 8 boards.I thing thats a nice gamble.This is thinking that he gets around thirty minutes a game.The grizz have only one guy over 6'10".