Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Jerel McNeal: The second round pick who could steal hearts and minds...

Now, in the search for making a series? I found something out. There’s not much for the two guard. Really. I mentioned Jack McClinton. And I believe he’s going to be good.

But you know what? Jerel McNeal will be great. He will be drafted in the second round, and he will have seasons where, at the very least, Free Darko will sing his praises.

Why? I will break it down simply. Succintly.

1) His game is all-around golden.

Let me tell you what Jerel McNeal needs to work on. Off-ball defense. That’s it. Anything else is nitpicking. He hits the three, with a solid mid-range game. He passes well for a two-guard. He locks down his man. You want more?

2) The steal/foul didatic.

In a way? The steal is kind of like the NBA’s version of the strike zone. Or the stolen base. Look. It’s nice to have a guy who can get three steals per game. But if they get in foul trouble? They’re as useless as Alvin Robertson.

Jerel McNeal went from a freshman that gambled entirely too much to a senior who, while he does not have a red number under his fouls committed on Kenpom.com, has become at the very least competent at avoiding foul trouble because he gets too grabby.

3) Intangibles.

You want a college basketball player with a motor. Someone who can’t get fired up when he’s doing it for free will be even more of a dog when he turns pro. You have a 6′3″ two-guard who’s had to defend some of the best in basketball and developed a reputation as a stopper. You have a 6′3″ two-guard who’s just started to create his own shot with a general aplomb.

Put it this way. If he was 6′6″, he’d be threating to kiss the lottery. If he was 6′6″? He would not shock the world. But people are going to sleep on Jerel McNeal.

But I’m not. He’s going to win.

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