OKC Thunder prospect series: Examining Darius Garland’s complicated season

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OKC Thunder Draft Prospect Series

Darius Garland (Photo by Cassy Athena/Getty Images)

Darius Garland seemingly has all the tools to be an elite NBA point guard. But why isn’t he talked about as such? And would it behoove the OKC Thunder to chase him?

When Darius Garland came down with a knee injury two minutes into a game against Kent State, there was an underlying feeling that not only would this likely be his last game of the season, but also his career at Vanderbilt. Though he had only played in five games and was still finding his footing in the college game, it was clear that he’d built a good enough case to be a surefire lock for the lottery and maybe even the top-five if the injury wasn’t too bad.

In his short college career, he seemingly showed everything you could ask for in a modern guard: he could break down anyone off the dribble and get into the lane; he could fly off screens and drain pull-up jumpers; he could blow by everyone in transition and get an easy bucket; he could even find open shooters on the other side of the court and make some truly spectacular passes. It was no surprise we started to see videos from real media outlets projecting him as a potential All-Star level point guard.

But when you look at mock drafts, you get the impression he could land anywhere from the Lakers at fourth to the Charlotte Hornets at twelfth. In a fairly weak class beyond the first pick, someone with this much potential falling so far seems a tad odd. The injury and sample size, of course, played a part but that doesn’t seem to be the whole thing. So how did we get here? And how good a prospect is Darius Garland really?

Specifics:

  • Height: 6’2”
  • Weight: 175
  • Wingspan: 6’5”
  • Position: Point Guard
  • Age: 19.3
  • College: Vanderbilt
  • Stat line: 16.2 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 0.8 steals
  • Home Town:  Nashville, Tennessee
Per Game Table
SeasonGMPFGAFG%2PA2P%3PA3P%FTAFT%TRBASTSTLTOVPTS
2018-19527.810.8.5376.2.5814.6.4783.2.7503.82.60.83.016.2
Career527.810.8.5376.2.5814.6.4783.2.7503.82.60.83.016.2
Provided by CBB at Sports Reference: View Original Table
Generated 5/25/2019.

 

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