Michael Kidd-Gilchrist: Kentucky Standout Will Struggle to Make Impact in Pros
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was an essential part of Kentucky’s 2011 NCAA national championship team, but he wasn’t the biggest impact player on the roster. Alone, he won’t be able to do much in the NBA, but if he plays for the right team, he will do just fine.
Kidd-Gilchrist is very athletic, good in transition, solid on defense and a good passer. This skill-set combination doesn’t scream NBA superstar, but he could play an important role on a lot of teams.
Kidd-Gilchrist could end up being a good NBA sidekick just as he was to Kentucky’s Anthony Davis in college. He does the little things that help teams win.
Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress sums it up well:
Not someone who can be expected to shoulder an offense considering his somewhat limited skill-set, he is the type of player who needs good teammates around him to fully utilize all the different things he does well. He really understands the nuances of making others better with his ability to set screens, pass, and make hustle plays, which is likely a big reason why he's always been considered such a winner from very early on in his career.
With that said, he has a ways to go before he can be considered anything more than a complimentary offensive option, which is exactly what he was for Kentucky as their fifth leading per-minute scorer.
Of course, he isn’t terrible on his own either—that’s why he’s projected to go No. 2 in most NBA mock drafts (like here and here). Kidd-Gilchrist averaged 11.9 points and 7.4 rebounds per game, and his best individual performance came against No. 4 Indiana in the Sweet 16, where he scored 24 points and pulled down 10 boards.
But until he can raise his individual game, especially his shooting, Kidd-Gilchrist won’t be any more than a wingman in the NBA.
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