2. Kristaps Porzingis, F-C
Talk about a stunner. At just 20-years old and possessing a face that still can’t grow facial hair, Kristaps Porzingis has already arrived.
Most speculated the Latvian No. 4 overall pick would be a project. Such a project that year one and two would be a complete wash. Such project that Stephen A. Smith went nuts on live television and Carmelo Anthony (most likely) had quite the reaction himself.
First came all of those put-back dunks. There were at least three, maybe four straight games in which the opposition didn’t account for the lurking rookie. He made them pay with great hustle and a great nose for the ball.
Then came the (almost) game-winner in Charlotte.
Now we realize there’s literally nothing this kid doesn’t have. His 7’3” frame is oozing with talent. He’s already shown he can shoot from downtown (making 15 on the season); he’s flashed his iso/post-up game (remember the “Dream Shake” put on Frank Kaminsky?); and he’s also played unbelievable defense (1.8 BPG).
What’s most encouraging though, is his overall sense for the game. He truly is a student of basketball and completely gets it on and off the floor.
Only the factor of time has him at the No. 2 spot.