Bucks Diary

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Bucks Prospects: PF Al Horford

This is my fourth profile of prospects who might be available to the Milwaukee Bucks at the 6th pick in the 2007 NBA Draft. Today I'm looking at PF Al Horford from the University of Florida.

Upside Comparison: Charles Oakley
Downside Comparison: Dale Davis

What I like about him: Alot. He's pretty much everything the Bucks need. He's physical (which they aren't), he rebounds (which they don't), and he defends (which they never do). He would also be a potentially nice compliment to Andrew Bogut, sort of a poor man's Maurice Lucas to Bogut's homeless man's Bill Walton. And, at 6'9'', 245 with an 8'11'' high reach, he's got the size and the "junk in the trunk" a player needs to be effective in the NBA post. Plus his strength is simply awesome (he pushed 185 pounds up an incredible 20 times -- that translates into a one bench max of 392 pounds!!). He also showed that his standing leaping ability is pretty good, in fact better than the supposedly more athletic PF Brandan Wright and SF Kevin Durant. He was also an extremely productive player (Eff 48: 35.21) on a Florida team that was loaded, which bodes well for his productive ceiling at the next level.

What scares me about him: His offensive game is pretty rudimentary at this stage. Will he develop it, or will it just stagnate at the next level like his father's did? Also, when he was asked to defend bigger players (such as Greg Oden) he got dominated. Can he adequately match up against the NBA's awesome array of power forwards? Finally, while he appears to be a safe pick, he also doesn't have that much upside. What you see now is, I think, pretty much what you're going to get from this guy.

Bottom Line: If Horford falls to the Bucks at 6, I will jump for joy. He won't be a superstar, but he should be a solid contributor in areas of need for the Bucks. And, to me, he is clearly the third best prospect in this draft. I think that amongst the crop of possible Bucks selections, he is the least likely to bust. But I am not that optimistic that he will be there at 6. As I see it, the only chance of that happening is if the Hawks take Conley at 3, and the other teams above the Bucks fall in love with the mysterious Chinese guy and the potential upside of Brandan Wright. Unfortunately, at this point, I don't see that happening. NBA.com's consensus mock draft has him going at 4 to Memphis.


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