While most of the attention on the Lakers this draft season stem from them holding the #2 overall pick, the team also holds the #32 selection in the upcoming draft. With that, we will be having a series of posts on potential options for that selection. This installment looks at Patrick McCaw, a sophomore guard out of UNLV.
Shooting Guard, 6’6.5″, 181 lbs. Sophomore, UNLV, 20 years old
33.7 minutes, 14.7 points, 46.5 field goal percentage, 77.4 free throw percentage, 3.9 assists, 5.1 rebounds, 2.5 steals, 0.4 blocks.
Big Board Rankings:
Draft Express – 29, CBS (Sam Vecenie) – 36, CBS (Doug Gottlieb) — 29, Sports Illustrated – 31, ESPN (Chad Ford) — 28
The second potential draft prospect from UNLV is Patrick McCaw. Unlike his teammate, Stephen Zimmerman, McCaw is a year older and plays shooting guard. He’s got great size with his height and 6’10 wingspan to play both wing positions and is athletic enough to handle the quicker guys.
What’s impressive about McCaw is that he was able to improve his shooting percentage from 40 percent his freshman year to 46 percent his sophomore year on a couple more attempts per game. His two-point percentage went up by almost 12 percent, which bodes well for his potential. He also shot almost 37 percent from three on 5.6 attempts per game, and he’s best off of the catch-and-shoot, so the sophomore can hit from deep.
While McCaw has shown progress with his shot, he’s most productive in transition and semi-transition. With the defense not set, he was able to use his athleticism to get to the rim, or he was able to find the open man. He’s got really good court vision, averaging slightly under four assists per game.
What teams are most excited about with Patrick McCaw is his defense. He averaged 2.5 steals per game, thanks in large part to his length and anticipation. He can guard point guards as well as wings, but he’s too skinny to guard stretch fours. He can guard on-ball, off-ball, pick-n-rolls, and can contest due to his long reach.
The theme for most prospects around this range for the Lakers seems to be a lack of strength and/or weight. The worst part about McCaw is that he’s only 180 pounds. What would really help McCaw out would be adding at least ten more pounds, but getting up to 200 would be huge for him.
With the increase in shots and usage percentage, McCaw was able to keep his three-point percentage around the same, but it’s still at 36.6 percent. He’s good on spot-ups, but he really needs to work on his off balance shots and pull-ups (0.614 PPP). He’s also not good in isolation, garnering only 0.44 PPP. He can get out of control at times on offense, so he needs to learn how to harness that. Lastly, because he’s not a big, he doesn’t like taking the ball to the basket. In 33 minutes, he only averaged 3.2 free throws per game.
The 2.5 steals per game is extremely impressive, but it also means Patrick McCaw gambles a lot on defense, on and off the ball. This isn’t ideal because it allows his man to get by him. Also, with his strength, he’s going to have a hard time defending the bigger guards in the league because length can only do so much.
Where he fits in with the Lakers:
McCaw is a high-upside 3-and-D guy who the Lakers could desperately use. He may not garner a lot of minutes right away, but once he puts on some weight and gets more control of his game, he could be very good. Of all the prospects in the 32 range, Patrick McCaw may have the most potential for a wing, and he would be my pick for the Lakers.
With his improving shot, his court vision, and potential on defense, he could fit right in with the Lakers. He can potentially guard three positions in the NBA, and that would be more than welcomed for the young team. The Lakers perimeter defense was atrocious, and if they could get Brandon Ingram and Patrick McCaw, we could see changes very soon on that side of the ball. As for his offense, his passing ability would fit right in with Luke Walton — who is now officially the Lakers head coach. His shot may be a little too inconsistent right now, but he should be able to hit open looks coming from D’Angelo Russell. Sign me up.