Leading up to the NBA Draft we will be analyzing scouting reports for various players who have entered their name in this year’s NBA Draft. The focus of these articles will be on prospects who we find most intriguing and feel readers need to become more familiar. Please let us know if you want any players specifically @edupridepress. All stats and videos are via KenPom, ESPN, DraftExpress, and YouTube.
Ivan Rabb- California
Weight: 220 lbs
Projected: 29 (Draft Express) 26 (CPP Big Board) 23 (CPP Mock Draft)
Background: Ivan Rabb teamed up with Jaylen Brown during their freshmen campaigns at California. Brown left after one year to become the #3 pick of the draft where he has shown great potential for the Celtics. Rabb decided to return to Cal in hopes of improving his NBA Draft stock and become the top options for Cuonzo Martin’s team. Rabb was considered to be a fringe Top 10 pick in last year’s draft so returning to school was a great financial risk.
Rabb’s stats increased in his sophomore season but the increased usage did not come with the same efficiency that he showed in his freshman season. Rabb shot 49% on shots inside the arc which was down from 61% his freshman season. Inefficiency as well as an inability to develop go-to post moves have caused Rabb to slide in this loaded draft class.
Ivan Rabb is best suited to go to a playoff team that is just looking for an extra big to come off the bench. He can come in and add value right away. He may not have the upside of Jarrett Allen or Harry Giles but he is the most NBA ready.
Strengths: Many NBA Scouts believe that the skill that translates to the NBA the easiest is rebounding and that was Rabb’s biggest strength in college. Rabb averaged 10.5 rebounds a game during his second campaign in Berkley. Rabb also has a good touch around the rim finishing offensive rebounds, dump off passes, and other shots in the paint.
Rabb is also a high IQ big that can read the pick n roll on both ends of the floor and be able to read any double teams on the offensive end. He uses his pivot foot very well to operate down low.
Weaknesses: Ivan Rabb’s weaknesses became more apparent this year as he was not playing second fiddle to Jaylen Brown. Rabb’s jump shot is extremely ugly and flat. He does not have great form and struggles from outside the paint as well as the free throw line. Whichever NBA team drafts him will likely have him work extensively with their shooting coach. With Rabb ineffective outside the paint he will be limited to playing the 5 in the NBA which brings up his second major weakness; his frame. At 220 pounds he will struggle to keep opponents out of the paint and most seasoned centers will be able to back him down into a foul or easy layup. Rabb will need to put on some lower body mass to hold his ground against the goliaths at the next level. Finally, Rabb is not the most athletic player which limits his shot blocking potential. He will not be quick enough off the floor to contest and effect shots.
Comparison: Tristan Thompson
Tristan Thompson is the comparison here because Thompson has made a living off of rebounding and finishing around the rim. Thompson offers very little offensive skill but gets after the glass. Thompson also plays above average defense in the post but is not a shot blocker. Rabb is already a tremendous rebounder and can finish and I believe he can turn himself into an above average post defender as he gets stronger and his IQ continues to grow.
Be sure to check out the rest of our NBA Draft coverage!