There's an argument to be made that no 2020 NBA Draft Prospect has gained more momentum as of late than Ratiopharm Ulm point guard Killian Hayes. Standing at 6'5" with a reported 6'8" wingspan, Hayes has the measurables you look for in a franchise ball handler and pairs that with an impressive arsenal of potential offensive firepower. A smooth shooting lefty who can hurt you from multiple levels on the offensive side of the ball, Hayes has all of the raw tools that teams look for when they want to insert a jolt in their offense. As with most prospects, Hayes will have his fair share of questions to answer moving forward. He has the potential to become a strong defensive asset due to his size and quickness but will need to adjust in a hurry to the speed jump he's about to encounter with the NBA.
Hayes will get plenty of recognition for his ability on the offensive side of the ball, but there's some intriguing potential with him as a defender. At 6'5", with a reported 6'8.25" wingspan, Hayes has the ideal size to become a strong asset as a defender. Here we get a good look at Hayes being active away from the ball and jumping the passing lane.
OFF THE BOUNCE
Hayes is going to check a lot of boxes when it comes to the overall offensive versatility he has in his game. You'll hear plenty of people say "this kid reminds me of James Harden." While let's not get carried away with that idea...Hayes has the shiftiness and usage of hesitations you would want in a young scoring point guard. Here's a good look at Hayes attacking off of the dribble and before showing us a nice counter and step back pull up.
The pick and roll game is going to be Killian's bread and butter at the NBA level. What's most impressive with Hayes is his feel coming off of the P&Rs. Notice the patience to allow this play to develop. He does a great job of setting up the recovering defender and getting to his spot before showing us his soft touch with a floater.
There's a lot of playmaking potential waiting to be unlocked with this kid. There's a couple of things that jump out to me in this sequence. First, Hayes shows no hesitation going right at the body of a bigger defender. It looks as if Hayes is running into trouble and is going to get caught in the air before he throws a dime on the money to the corner. Notice the situation as well. Tie game with less than 20 seconds remaining...if this pass isn't on the money this could be a shot clock violation.
PLAYMAKING PART II
Again, there's some serious intrigue when it comes to Hayes as a playmaking guard. This play might look like a simple read, but it's the attention to detail that you need to look at. Now Hayes sees this roll coming from a mile away. He knows all he needs to do is have the big man bite and he has an easy assist here. Most young guards would give this up too early, but Hayes fakes the initial drive and goes right at the big man...setting up a clear passing lane for an uncontested two.
These are the type of plays that will have the attention of evaluators leaguewide. There's shiftiness to Hayes game, especially off of the dribble. He's got an arsenal of set-ups from the perimeter that he can bring out in order to get enough of a window to get a clean look. Solid form from outside despite only posting a 29.4 3P% this year. Hayes also posted a 87.6 FT%, so there's hope that his outside shooting should improve quickly.
This is simply one of those plays that you need to watch on a loop to understand the brilliance behind it. Hayes makes this pass look easy and the placement couldn't be more perfect. Great anticipation to patiently let this develop and create the proper angle for this lob. Hayes leads his teammate perfectly like an NFL quarterback leading his receiver.
VISION PART II
Another beautiful look here from Hayes and this one is off of the attack. Notice the recognition by Killian. He keeps his head up and sees multiple defenders collapsing on him. Now some young guards might try to fit this pass over the top on a jump pass. Hayes does a great job of getting the defenders to commit before throwing a beautiful dime for his teammate.
A great look here at the type of shiftiness that Killian has when trying to create off of the dribble. Hayes will need to continue to develop as a ball-handler, especially with his off-hand, but the tools moving forward are exciting. Great job of setting up his defender here and using his step back to gain serious separation.
FEEL FOR THE GAME
Hayes should translate well as a P&R ball handler at the next level, especially if he can continue to develop his handles. Defenses have to respect him as a multi-level scoring threat at all times and that fits well with his underrated playmaking ability. Notice the attention that Killian draws here on the attack. Once Hayes recognizes the defense collapsing on him, he does a great job of locating the shooter in the corner for a wide-open three.
A nice display here of the patience and feel that Killian has at his weaponry. Hayes has some impressive handles in his arsenal, although he seriously needs to spend some time building confidence in his off hand. Once Hayes sees the mismatch here he creates some space with a nice little step back.
Offensive firepower is going to be the main selling point when teams evaluate a prospect like Killian Hayes as an NBA prospect. Hayes has the potential to fill it up from three levels as an offensive weapon, as well as some promise as a playmaker. If Hayes can develop his off hand, which he does everything to avoid, it will be a major leap forward in his development. Hayes currently ranks 7th on our big board and continues to trend upward.