Oak Park (Ill.) Oak Park & River Forest
At the end of the day he's a multi-positional big guard by college basketball standards. A 6-4 kid who has the ability to play behind the arc, can create for himself and others off the dribble and is an athletic player.
One of his strengths is that he is hitting his stride late in his high school career and improving on a daily basis. The fact that he can play more than one position is going to be very advantageous down the line.
He's very committed on both ends.
He's a very committed kid on both ends; will wind up being an exceptional defensive player as well as a potent offensive threat. He's very unselfish. And he can really shoot it.
A lot of times he'll commit some errors of just trying a little too hard and that's OK – those are correctable things. Whereas he has a great natural feel for the game, he has to be careful in the decision making process. You're watching a guy who someday has the skill set to be a point guard, and you're seeing him go through that progression and it's going to take a little while. He's in the process of fine tuning some things.
He's starting to learn where he has an advantage and exploiting it as opposed to trying to create an advantage that isn't there. And you just want him to get to the point where he's real confident with the ball. With his size and his skill set, he hasn't yet maxed out what he can do with the basketball.
I think he'll be able to help out at the point guard position. He'll be able to get you some points and I think he'll start off at the '2' and play that most of the time during his college career. But understand that he's more than capable of being a secondary ball handler and/or backup point guard.
The eye opening moment a lot of people had with him was when they watched him go through some drills at LeBron James' Camp.
He was playing against Kemba Walker, who in my opinion is a McDonald's All-American and one of the best guards in the country. They were running their camp team through a series of drills and Walker completely had his hands full with Shumpert at the point guard spot. You could just see Shumpert's confidence growing – he defended, made all the right passes and knocked down shots. Walker just couldn't do anything with him. With Shumpert, you have to be there to catch the glimpses, because not all the pieces are in place yet. On that day at the LeBron Camp, you saw his potential as a prospect.
You have to be there to catch the glimpses, because not all the pieces are in place yet.
No. 15 -- I don't know how much higher he can go up. We've been extremely aggressive ranking him from the get-go because of a couple actors – his age (he's nearly a year younger than some of his class of 2008 peers) and the clear fact that he's a late bloomer and he didn't hit his stride with his confidence until late in the summer. With him there's definitely a component of projecting him down he road and that's not the case with everybody. Some guys are ranked where they are because they earned that status. With Shumpert it's a definite projection at No. 15.
Long term this is a guy who fits the mold of being an elite level guard. He's starting to understand that, but there's still room for that to be maximized. I think we're betting that Shumpert's youth plays a big part in his favor, and his size, his intelligence and his natural ability are all clear markers and we're hedging our bets on that.
I think he's one of the best guards in the country and it's a great story how he's emerged -- the way he's followed a progression of getting better. He was not a big name nationally prior to the spring. He was well known regionally and a lot of local schools had their eyes on him, but he definitively had a coming out party in the spring.
The thing about watching him from the spring and summer was it was interesting to watch him play in settings with lots of other good players. The other kids didn't know who he was. Often times in camp settings you're around guys that have big reputations and he was kind of slow to engage and exert himself and he played very unselfish through the spring and summer.
He can be both aggressive and unselfish because he has such a good basketball IQ.
Every now and then he'd have a game where he'd come out and be aggressive and that's when he played his best basketball. He can be both aggressive and unselfish because he has such a good basketball IQ.
It took him a little while to feel confident that he belonged on the floor with those guys and then he'd have a game or two now and then where he'd let you know how good he can be.