Stuck in the house during the coronavirus pandemic, ESPN is having to get creative when it comes to scouting potential draftees leading up to the NBA Draft.
Without the opportunity for in-person meetings, interviews, and film sessions, ESPN is going virtual with their coverage. And today, they expanded that coverage to include former Kentucky guard Immanuel Quickley.
Quickley, the No. 55 prospect in ESPN’s list of best available prospects in the draft, joined a video call with analyst Mike Schmitz to break down his film and discuss what he plans to bring to the league both immediately and in the long run.
“Right away, first of all, a great locker room guy. You’re not going to get much off-the-court stuff at all,” Quickley told Schmitz when asked about what his future team will be getting out of him both on and off the floor. “A leader, a positive person in practice and games. I work hard every day. On the court, shooting, basketball IQ, and defense. I play hard every possession.”
Despite playing mostly on-ball in high school, Quickley spent the majority of his time off the ball at Kentucky alongside Ashton Hagans and Tyrese Maxey. Though some believe Quickley wasn’t able to prove what he can do as a primary ball-handler and it may have hurt his draft stock a bit, the former Wildcat guard believes he’s actually more prepared for the league after sharing the ball with such dynamic guards.
“Honestly, watching so much film, the game is changing. Like the Clippers, they play Landry Shamet, Lou Williams on the floor at one time,” Quickley said. “That was similar to what we did last year with Tyrese [Maxey], Ashton [Hagans], and me. Just having multiple ball-handlers on the floor, multiple playmakers, I look at it has an advantage, not a disadvantage when I get to the NBA.”
The 6-foot-3 guard out of Havre de Grace, MD also broke down his own film with ESPN, looking at his ability to earn opportunities at the free throw line and finding success with dribble handoffs.
Take a look at the film breakdown below:
Great Saturday morning film session with SEC Player of the Year and Kentucky standout Immanuel Quickley. One of the best shooters in the draft with a high IQ and strong compete level. Understands who he is as a player & knows how to add value in a variety of different situations. pic.twitter.com/f8VBIosOmt
— Mike Schmitz (@Mike_Schmitz) May 2, 2020
In his sophomore campaign, Quickley was named Southeastern Conference Player of the Year by the league’s coaches and All-SEC First Team. He was also tabbed an All-American by The Athletic, CBS Sports and Bleacher Report, along wiith earning U.S. Basketball Writers Association District IV Player of the Year and USBWA All-District IV Team honors. On the year, the former Wildcat improved in every major statistical category, including leading the SEC regular-season champions in scoring (16.1 points per game), 3-pointers (62) and 3-point shooting (42.8%).
Now, Quickley is expected to be selected anywhere from the late first to the middle of the second round, with The Athletic predicting him to go No. 43 overall to the Sacramento Kings in their latest mock draft.