Jordan Hill had another productive game that did a good job highlighting his strengths as a prospect, as well as his shortcomings. One on hand he displayed his excellent athleticism with a number of terrific finishes off pick and roll plays and in transition, running the floor extremely well and exploding off the ground in impressive fashion. He also knocked down a 20 foot jump-shot, the most range we’ve seen him show thus far, and converted on a decent looking turnaround jumper in the post.
On the other hand, Hill’s poor skill-level was very much evident in this game, as he looked very raw and mechanical trying to post up Cleveland State’s undersized defenders in the post
, being stripped on one possession and also throwing up some ugly looking bricks. You would have expected him to dominate this game considering the huge advantage he holds in terms of size/athleticism against the 6-5 and 6-6 big men he went up against, but he really wasn’t able to consistently take advantage of his natural gifts.
Defensively, Hill has potential but clearly is lacking in the fundamentals department, having a hard time rotating over effectively to guard the paint and picking up some questionable fouls. His basketball IQ is clearly nothing to write home about, and unless he’s able to significantly improve his skill-level over the next few years (not out of the question considering how far he’s come), he looks a lot more likely to develop into a solid energy guy/role-player rather than the game-changing presence you might expect from a potential top-5 pick.
With that in mind, the fact that his rebounding rate has fallen significantly recently, going from over averaging over 12 boards per contest in the first 20 games, to just 9.3 rebounds in last 12 games, is not a great sign.