Markelle Fultz has been selected with the first pick in the 2017 NBA Draft and the Philadelphia 76ers have to be ecstatic that they landed him. Fultz is a complete player who has the profile of a future star in the league. What follows is a scouting report of the newest member of the Sixers.
Markelle Fultz Profile
Fultz has a complete game. He’s an oustanding ball-handler with superb court-vision but he’s also a guy who can play off-the-ball if necessary. He’s fantastic at getting to the hoop when he has the rock in his hands, has a really nice jumper with range to the 3-point line and rarely turns the ball over. He can seamlessly switch between the point and off-guard roles if necessary.
What separates Fultz from his competition at guard in this class, is his true two-way ability. Not only is he one of the best offensive players in the class, he’s also one of the best defenders. He already plays like a high-level NBA player on that side of the ball. His 6’10” wingspan not only helps him defensively, but when finishing around the rim.
Virtually all accounts give Fultz high marks for his character both on and off the court as well.
It would be easy to say Fultz’s game was flawless, and it’s darn near close. But he’s not the fastest or quickest player with the ball in his hands despite excellent athleticism. There is also room to grow in his frame, and he’ll have to get stronger to take the pounding of the lead guard in the NBA. Still, those are minor blemishes on a near-perfect canvass.
One common complaint is that Fultz didn’t elevate the talent around him at Washington. The Huskies were terrible and finished 9-22, while losing their final 13 games. But, to be fair, it’s hard to do much when the roster is as bad as Washington’s was. Fultz still managed to score 23.2 points per game while shooting 47.6 percent from the field and 41.3 percent from 3-point range. Oh yeah, and that came with opponents specifically game-planning to stop him. He added 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists in 35.7 minutes per game. I’m fairly sure Fultz was doing everything he could to help Washington win.
Fultz is the best player in this class by a long-shot. He is the unique draft pick that has a high floor and a high ceiling. He has star written all over him and might be the most complete guard to enter the NBA since Derrick Rose in 2008.