Markelle Fultz is more than advertised. A smooth shooter with dynamic all-around skills, in his freshman year he played on a bad Washington team. Still, he showed why he was above all the rest no one could stop him; he was always easily the best player on the court against any prospect. Fultz scored 25 points 5, assists, 6 rebounds and 3 steals vs Lonzo Ball and UCLA, a game between two players that became the 1st and 2nd pick overall pick.
Fultz exploded many times in college games, including 35 points and 6 assists vs Cal State Fullerton, 30 points 7 rebounds and 6 assists vs Yale, 26 points 11 rebounds 9 assists and 2 blocks vs Washington state not to mention a career high 37 points to go with 8 assists and 5 rebounds against Colorado. Fultz averaged 23.2 points 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists in his lone freshman year; he displayed what all the hype was about and would display more.
In NBA summer league play, Fultz averaged 20.3 points 3.5 rebounds and 3 assists for the Sixers. Against Utah, Fultz scored 23 points 5 rebounds 5 assists including 13 points in the 4th quarter displaying not only his full arsenal of skills but he displayed he can take over with his scoring.
So, what can we expect at the next level?
Scoring: Fultz ability to score is not only elite but exciting. The comparisons fit Fultz like a glove; He has the deadly jump shot and handles of James Harden. His ability to rise above the rim and blow by you are similar to Dwayne Wade and Russell Westbrook. When you watch him play it’s easy to forget that the he is only 19.
Rebounds: At 6’5, his athleticism allows him to be a good rebounder, like guards Westbrook and Harden he has triple double potential. As he gets used to the wear, tear, physical nature and pace of the game rebounding will become more of strength for him.
Assists: Fultz is not only a good passer, but an underrated one. He has great vision and is even better in transition. Fultz adds another passer that can take over as a point along with Simmons and Saric. He will be able to in others open in tight spaces.
Steals: Fultz is not a defensive specialist but he has the potential to be a shutdown defender. He has more to learn but is not a liability; Fultz averaged 1.6 steals a game for Washington in his senior season. He has already stated that he will learn to be a better defender by watching Robert Covington, one of the best defenders in the league.
Blocks: Fultz averaged 1.2 blocks a game his senior year in college. This part of this game makes him even more complete. His athletic ability allows him to keep up with anybody. The skill for him to be able to get one block a game as a 6’5 guard reminds me of the skill Norlens Noel showed in Philly as a 6’11 center.
2017-18 Predictions: 20.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.1 blocks
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports