Former Michigan State basketball star Denzel Valentine recently completed his drills at the 2016 NBA Draft Combine. Though Valentine did not participate in shooting drills, he did take part in almost all of the strength and agility tests. Below are his measurements from the draft:
Height without shoes: 6’4”
Height with shoes: 6’5.75”
Standing Reach: 8’6”
Body Fat Percentage: 9.2
These numbers range well for a player with no one position as of now. Though he would be on the shorter side for a small forward, he can fit well playing the two, or a taller point guard.
When it came to the agility tests, Valentine tested about average when compared to his draft counterparts. This is not surprising as Valentine was never an athletic specimen in college. In every test except the lane agility test, Valentine was near the middle of the pack or lower. Better numbers would have certainly helped raise Valentine’s stock, but what he produced was probably what teams expected, so his draft position will not change from this.
Valentine recently compared himself to current Boston Celtics’ shooting guard Evan Turner.For comparison sake, below are some numbers from Turner’s combine in 2010:
Maximum Vertical Jump: 34.5”
Lane Agility: 11.06 seconds
Height Without Shoes: 6’5.75”
Height With Shoes: 6’7”
Both Turner and Valentine’s combine stats show close similarities. Turner coming out of college, unlike Valentine, was known more as an offensive threat. However, they both had close averages in their last years in college. Turner eventually was drafted with the No. 2 pick in the 2010 draft.
Reviewing Valentine’s showing at the combine reveals that he neither improved, nor hurt his draft stock. If his agility numbers were much better, a case could be made he upped his draft stock, though better numbers would have been a shock. With Valentine, teams know he is no athletic freak like a Ben Simmons, or a potential scoring leader in Brandon Ingram. He will get drafted because he is average, or above average, in every way. In the NBA, he will be more of a facilitator and rebounder, who can knock down a three when needed. He has the passing ability to always have a job in the league, but he will not be an all-star.
NBA Ceiling: Poor Man’s Draymond Green.
NBA Floor: Jared Dudley.
Draft Prediction: No. 11 to the Orlando Magic.