Cowbell Kingdom 2012 Draft Profiles: Damian Lillard

Updated at 3:50 pm

With Tyreke Evans, Marcus Thornton, Jimmer Fredette and Isaiah Thomas, the Sacramento Kings are loaded with depth in their backcourt.  However, that’s not stopping them from taking a look at this year’s mid-major superstar, Damian Lillard.  The Weber State point guard showcased his talents in an individual workout for Kings’ brass today.

Damian Lillard – Weber State

There is a reason Damian Lillard is being touted by some as this draft’s Jimmer Fredette.  Lillard comes from a mid-major program in Utah and became a legitimate NBA prospect through his good work ethic.  And like Fredette, Lillard is also a scoring dynamo.  In his final season at Weber State, Lillard averaged 24.5 points per contest, ranking him as the second-leading scorer in college basketball this year. The Oakland native can shoot the ball and possesses very solid range.  After shooting below 40-percent on 3′s in his first three seasons (which included an injury-shortened junior year), Lillard shot nearly 41 percent from beyond the arc this season.

Wildcats Head Coach Randy Rahe talks about Lillard’s strengths.  From Draft Express and Valley of the Suns’ Mike Schmitz video breakdown:

“He’s good at every area.  He has very few weaknesses.  Offensively, he can shoot the tar out it from deep range.  He’s very explosive athletically, so he can go by you and make plays.  He can score at the rim, he finishes with the ball really well.  He changed his diet, he’s strong and he’s able to take contact, so he got to the foul line a whole bunch.  He scored the ball in (any) way you can think of.  And on top of that, he’s a very unselfish player.  He averaged whatever it was, on basically 15 shots a game, an unbelievably low amount.  So he’s extremely efficient.”

As far as his weaknesses are concerned, we start with his point guard instincts.  Can Lillard learn to be a facilitator?  The 6’2 guard averaged just four assists per contest in his last year.  He also could use more work on his defense and mid-range game.  And lastly, how will he fair against improved talent?  Lillard played in the Big Sky Conference with the likes of Montana and Sac State – not exactly basketball powerhouses.  However, a player has come out of that conference before to see success in the NBA.  The Detroit Pistons’ Rodney Stuckey has cemented himself as a good NBA player after being selected 15th overall out of Eastern Washington in 2007.

Measurements:

  • Height: 6′1.75″ w/o shoes, 6’2.75″ w/shoes
  • Weight: 215 lbs., 5.9% body fat
  • Wingspan: 6′ 7.75″
  • Standing Reach: 7′ 11.5″

Testing:

  • Standing Vertical: 34.5″
  • Running Vertical: 39.5″
  • Bench Press: 13 rep max
  • Lane Agility: 11.15 sec.
  • 3/4 Court Sprint: 3.34 sec.

Post-workout Notes

  • Lillard on what he was able to demonstrate to Kings’ brass: “Just my ability to make shots. I worked out by myself obviously. So I wanted to show that I’m in good shape and when I get a little tired, I can still go hard and be able to knock down shots.”
  • After a workout with the Raptors, Lillard made a cross-coast flight from Toronto to get to Sacramento today.  He has a workout in Portland tomorrow and then a workout in Golden State.
  • Lillard compares himself to George Hill. He cites Hills’ athleticism and ability to score as some of their similarities.

Workout Footage (Via Kings.com)

The Kings continue the pre-draft process with an individual workout with Andre Drummond of UConn tomorrow.

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About: Jonathan Santiago

Jonathan Santiago serves Cowbell Kingdom as senior editor specializing in writing, podcasting and video production. He also handles the majority of CK’s day-to-day beat coverage of the Kings.