One look at the University of Memphis depth chart and it was clear they needed some depth and versatility in the frontcourt. In steps 6-foot-7 Nick King. A player who is probably most natural for the small forward position, he also can slide down and play some power forward.
Now it is known that the five-star prospect will be keeping his unique talent home and playing at Memphis, and it is a huge boost for Pastner.
When watching Memphis play, it is clear that they love to get up and down the floor, and then be active on the defensive end with a lot of pressure. An up-tempo system without many set plays, that system seems to fit exactly what King.
Developing his skill game, King still gets it done mostly on athleticism and toughness. He is one of the best rebounders in the country despite not being the biggest guy in the world, and then has the ability to finish very well inside and in the mid-range. He can do that off of offensive rebounds or by creating for himself.
Where King can struggle is when the game slows down and he is forced to make plays against a set defense. Obviously the goal for Memphis is to keep things fast paced and allow athletes to get out and make plays.
Also Memphis likes to shoot threes, and that is one area where he has made huge strides. During the regular season of the EYBL, King made 44 percent of his three point attempts, and has become someone who must be respected on the perimeter, and that has freed him up to make more plays going to the rim.
Overall it is key for the Memphis Tigers to keep as many of the top players in their backyard home. Now they will never get them all, that is impossible, but keeping the majority of them home is what is likely to have Memphis stay in the NCAA Tournament, and help them to solid finishes in the Big East.
Landing King is a huge step to doing that. The Tigers beat out schools like Texas, Florida, Arkansas, and Vanderbilt for him. No one has ever questioned Pastner's ability to recruit, and once again he proved his ability to get players with King being the latest to join him. On paper it looks to be a good fit, and it is enormous for the Tigers to have him locked up along with another Memphis native in Markel Crawford.