|Shane Larkin may not be 6 feet tall, but he is one of the most athletic players in the draft this year. (washingtonpost.com)|
Position: Point Guard
Current DraftExpress Prediction: No. 23 overall, No. 23 to the Indiana Pacers
Synopsis: Shane Larkin's physical qualities are both some of his biggest strengths and weaknesses. Larkin was measured at 5'11.5" with shoes on at the NBA draft combine, which will make him one of the smallest players on the court and could worry some teams. However, Larkin also recorded a 44-inch max vertical, which was the highest of the combine and second highest ever at the combine behind only former Kansas player Kenny Gregory, who had a 45-inch vertical. Larkin paired a high vertical with a great 3/4 court sprint time of 3.08 seconds. Larkin may be small, but he is athletic and that will make up for his lack of height.
On the court, Larkin was an offensive spark for Miami as a sophomore, leading the team with 14.5 points per game and 4.6 assists with eight games scoring more than 20 points. He was also a viable 3-point threat, hitting 40.6 percent of his threes last season. Most importantly, Larkin only turned the ball over an average of 2.3 times per game and he was forcing nearly that same amount by recording two steals per game.
Off the court might be another reason teams will be comfortable taking Larkin. It's well known that Larkin is the son of MLB Hall of Famer Barry Larkin, so Shane has spent his entire life around professional sports. The sport isn't the same, but Shane knows the environment, routine and what is expected from a professional athlete, so one would think the adjustment to professional basketball from an everyday life standpoint will be easier for Larkin than it may be for others.
Quote to note: “I knew I could jump. I knew I was fast. I didn’t think the teams knew how high I could jump, how athletic I was or how much I can bench press. So just being able to show that even though I’m a smaller guy, I can play above the rim and I’m strong enough to battle the big guards is a good thing.” - Shane Larkin on his athletic ability via the Chicago Sun-Times.
Follow @BeatsDimesDrive on Twitter
Like Beats Dimes and Drives on Facebook