Shabazz Muhammad was perhaps the most heralded college basketball recruit coming into the NCAA this past season. But his one year at UCLA was marred by off-the-court issues including an eligibility sanction and questions about his real age. There is a circus that comes with Muhammad and the question for a team like the Kings is if his talent is worth trouble.
At the NBA Draft Combine, Muhammad addressed dealing with the pressure of success in the face of lofty expectations.
Being the number one guy, everybody always wants you to fall. That’s what really makes me want to work. Guys want you to fall all the time and just knowing you’re gonna have guys out there that’s not wanting you to succeed. That’s why every day, I try to work as hard as I can and prove those guys wrong.
At 6’6, he’s a bit short for the small forward position, but makes up for his height with a 6’11 wingspan. Muhammad’s greatest strength is his scoring ability, which on the surface is just the opposite of what the Kings need. After all, the Kings aren’t short of ball-dominant, score-first players. However, the 20-year-old wing gets his points through unconventional methods, scoring primarily by “leaking out in transition, moving off the ball, as a spot-up shooter, posting up relentlessly, crashing the offensive glass, and coming off short curls in the mid-range area” according to Draft Express.
Mike Schmitz, an assistant video coordinator for the D-League’s Bakersfield Jam and former contributor to TrueHoop Network affiliate Valley of the Suns, has been putting together video scouting reports of prospects for Draft Express the last two years. Get to know more about Muhammad in Schmitz’s breakdown below.