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Potential Destinations: Portland Trail Blazers (No. 6, via Brooklyn Nets), Golden State Warriors (No. 7), New Orleans Hornets (No. 10, via Minnesota Timberwolves)
Perry Jones III is another player with the physical tools to be a very successful player in the NBA, but there are some obvious deficiencies in his game that could prevent him from ever living up to his potential.
Jones, like Sullinger, did not improve to the degree that many people expected him to, and his plateauing is not a positive sign going into the draft in a few weeks.
Jones is unlike any other player in the class. He has the size of a power forward or even a center at a lanky 6'11", and he should be able to use his size to be a nuisance on the defensive end of the court. Jones has a nice handle for someone his size and showed confidence in his playmaking by often bringing the ball up the court and initiating the offense for the Bears last season.
These are skills that any team wants from their forwards, but Jones has several obvious holes that will keep him from much success at the NBA level.
Like Drummond, Jones showed a disheartening lack of focus during his sophomore season. There were times where it seemed he went through the motions on the court, taking possessions off and not being the impact player Baylor needed him to be. For someone who could very well end up as a Top 10 pick and certainly a lottery selection, a team needs Jones to play his best every second on the court.
Commitment to the game is not something that should be an issue when a player is readying to turn pro.
In addition, Jones is fairly weak for someone his size. Though he has uncommon length, he will not be able to post up other forwards around his height with more bulk, of which there are many in the NBA. This lack of strength can be exploited on defense by a crafty forward who can back Jones into the paint and force him to play in the post.
Though Jones shot well from the field, connecting on 50 percent of his shot attempts, he has an unreliable jumper that will make him an easy cover for a quick defender who can keep him from getting to the basket. Jones must develop a reliable shot to make defenses play him close and allow him to use his athleticism to get to the rim, but his shooting hardly improved during his time in college.
Perhaps if he can fix these issues, he will be a special NBA player, but as of right now, I believe Perry Jones simply has too many issues to be a good professional player once he is selected.