Welcome back my friends to a show that never ends. It's officially NBA Draft season, so look out for the draft content and film rooms to start flowing around here. Each year, a prospect starts to see his stock soar around this time of the year. Usually, it's thanks to the NCAA tournament, but sometimes it's the fact that a prospect overseas has continued to impress with his play. The prospect we are talking about in this Film Room installment is Josh Giddey. If you haven't been following the NBL closely this year, then you might not be familiar with just how impressive Giddey has been throughout the year with the Adelaide 36ers...so let's break it down for ya.
Josh Giddey checks a number of boxes right out of the gate when it comes to his measurements. He's a 6'8" playmaking guard with some SERIOUS vision that makes him a lethal threat whenever the ball touches his hands. Giddey has put up some big performances throughout this season in the NBL and is currently averaging 11.2 PTS, 6.9 REB, and 6.9 AST on the season. Giddey still has plenty of upside left to find, which makes him a fascinating prospect for NBA teams. The other notable thing we need to talk about when it comes to the Australian guard is his age. Giddey is currently 18-years-old and won't turn 19 until October. Surely, teams will be drooling if they think that Giddey has plenty of untapped potential.
It's always special when you watch a floor general who possesses the ability of incredible feel. Take for instance Charlotte Hornets rookie LaMelo Ball. Sure, Ball and Giddey have similarities in their games. But before we take a trip to the loony land, allow me to explain what I believe makes them so similar. It's not just Ball and Giddey that are so similar, it's the rare playmaking guards that we are so fascinated with watching. They all have something in common. See, guards like this require your complete undivided attention. Because if you don't watch closely, you may miss the moment they truly do something spectacular. Giddey is another prospect in this line, in which he can look like he's going through the motions before he all of a sudden throws a fastball on a line to the perfect spot in which only his teammate can catch the pass. It's one thing to be a good passer...it's another to know exactly who is catching the ball before you throw it.
This hopefully will grab your attention and make you sit upright in your seat in a hurry. This is the type of player that Giddey is. He's calm, cool, and collected...but in the blink of an eye, he can flip the switch. One of the more underrated parts of Giddey's game is the fact that he understands angles and also knows he doesn't have to be in a hurry. He understands that he can allow the game to unfold right in front of his eyes. Imagine Giddey is a chess player that's looking for the move that is 4 moves ahead. He's calculating the time in which it's the best possible opportunity to strike.
Another beautiful look here by the 18-year-old. Notice how Giddey doesn't get rattled after picking up his dribble with the defender applying pressure. Most young ballhandlers might try to get rid of this pass and avoid a potential disaster. Giddey instead keeps his head up and surveys the rest of the floor. The location of this pass cannot be overstated. Look at the defender when Giddey decides to throw this pass. He knows his defender doesn't have his eyes on the ball, so Giddey throws this in a spot in which only his teammate can control the pass. It's the little things that stand out in a big way.
If you dive deep into the Josh Giddey film, you'll notice that he throws this same type of pass multiple times. It's beautiful and takes some serious precision to be able to throw this confidently. Notice how Giddey attacks the soft spots in a defense with a purpose. He doesn't throw this pass until he knows he can get the last line of defense to commit fully. Again, this pass has to be put in a tight window in order for his teammate to be able to catch and go up.
CREATING A WINDOW
Throughout the year, Giddey showed some fantastic chemistry in the two-man game with former NBA big man Isaac Humphries. A great display here showcasing Giddey's feel for the game. Giddey does a great job of bringing this ball out and creating some spacing to work with. After his initial attack, Giddey gets the first defender out of position, forcing the last line of defense to collapse on him. Most young players might be prideful at that point and try to finish with contact, but Giddey sees a small window and exploits it for a beautiful assist. Notice the timing in which Giddey finally decides to throw this pass. It's right when he sees the help defender go up for the rejection.
Remember earlier when I talked about how Giddey has that special skill in which you always have to be watching closely? Well, this is a perfect example of it. Giddey is calm and under control here but his eyes are always seeing the floor ahead. Before you know it, he's throwing a full-court dime on the money. I cannot express how impressive this pass is, based on the fact that there is such a small room for error with the placement of this pass.
PLAYMAKING PART II
Another great look here at the ability for Giddey to deliver the ball on an absolute rope. Great set here by the 36ers with a lot of moving parts that sets up a beautiful window for Giddey to make this pass. The defender here knows that Giddey is trying to make this pass, but a couple of quick ball fakes by Giddey gets his defender guessing in a hurry.
OFF THE BOUNCE
Now we're going to start looking at the scoring aspect of the young ball handler. Giddey will have plenty of questions when it comes to his outside shot, but a bit more on that later. The other underrated aspect of the 18-year-olds game is his ability to get downhill. Giddey knows he has the combination of size and quickness to get to the basket and he does it well. Commonly, you'll see that he loves to go to the spin dribble in order to set up defenders.
ONE ON ONE POTENTIAL
This is an important clip because we need to talk about the potential elephant in the room which is Giddey's outside shot. Now it's not terrible, but you'll see that it's a bit robotic and slow developing. Personally, I'm not too worried about it. Prospects like Giddey have plenty of room to grow, especially when it comes to upper body strength. A good NBA player development staff will do wonders for his shot, but you can still see that he's not afraid to let it fly. On the year currently, Giddey is shooting 33.3% from deep which isn't great but it's also not terrible. He understands the strengths of his game, but he's also confident enough in his shot to make the defenses pay if they don't respect him.
Wanted to see what Giddey could do in the open floor, as you would think it would be something that he potentially would thrive at when it came to the NBA game with additional spacing. A nice little sequence here from Giddey who shows his aggressiveness to get to the rack. A little wiggle here to set up the defender and a quick burst the moment he realizes he has the defender on his heels.
I'm a fan of this sequence entirely. First, this initial hook pass would have been a wide-open three ball if the defender hadn't gotten a fingertip on it. But Giddey doesn't give up on this play after that. Instead, he gets back to work. A great take across the lane with a beautiful left-hand finish for Giddey.
FEEL FOR THE GAME
This is the type of confidence I'm talking about when it comes to the shot. Giddey just does a great job of letting the game come to him, which is such a vastly underrated aspect especially when it comes to an 18-year-old prospect. Giddey attacks under control and quickly notices that he has the potential to create himself some spacing for a simple jumper. Nothing too fancy, but it shows the maturity for a player to understand the spots he should get to in order to get HIS shot.
Came away impressed with Josh Giddey's comfort in using both of his hands around the basket. Thought this clip was one of the best examples of that. Too many times you might see a young player try to force this initial look with the right hand. Instead, Giddey reacts to the defender and realizes that he can quickly get off a left-handed push shot for an easy two.
When the NCAA basketball season ends, it finally gives NBA scouts and executives time to sit back and reevaluate the full slate of prospects for the upcoming draft. But that doesn't mean that the international season is over for most prospects, which makes for some interesting timing for some players to have their stock rise. That's the case with a player like Josh Giddey who has continued to impress with his play as of late for the Adelaide 36ers. Giddey will be a name that will continue to climb up draft boards, and it wouldn't surprise me if his name is thrown around as a potential late lottery selection. If an NBA team is convinced that the shot will come around with some development, Giddey has the potential to be a scary prospect that NBA teams would love to have their hands on for the foreseeable future.