Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports
Drafted: First Round, Pick No. 6
Position: Point Guard
2012-13 Season Averages: 16.81 PER, 38.5 MPG, 19.0 PPG, 6.4 APG, 3.2 RPG, 1.0 SPG
Original Scouting Report
Approaching the 2012 NBA draft, there wasn't much that scouts could find to dislike about Damian Lillard. Most labeled him as the best point guard in the draft and noted his scoring abilities that fit the way the position has changed over the years.
Most importantly, Lillard was one of the most efficient players in the nation in college. During his final year at Weber State, Lillard posted a PER of 33.58.
According to Bleacher Report's Josh Martin, however, Lillard played a style that requires him to experience a relatively steep learning curve:
Lillard has shown that he can be a willing passer, though he registered only one assist every five possessions or so as a senior at Weber State. As such, there figures to be a learning curve for Lillard as he adjusts to a new role on a new team on a new plane of basketball existence.
That was an understandable and, quite frankly, rational belief. However, all who believed that Lillard would have a learning curve were immediately proved wrong.
He may be a rookie, but this young man outclasses veterans and All-Stars on a nightly basis.
Updated Scouting Report
Damian Lillard has been absolutely sensational in virtually every phase of the game. His pure shooting ability has made observers marvel, while his facilitating has been at a quality level considering the post-up style of Portland's offense.
In fact, Lillard leads all rookies in scoring, assists and three-point field goals made; he is 62 field goals made ahead of the second-leading three-point shooter.
Perhaps most impressive of all, Lillard is one of the most poised and controlled rookies in recent memory. His ability to come up in the clutch and sink shots with the game on the line may be the most impressive aspect of all.
He's 12th in the NBA in terms of clutch scoring.
With all of this noted, Lillard has not yet approached the realm of elite defenders. In fact, he struggles with players who thrive as jump shooters and can be vulnerable when taken off the dribble.
In due time, that will improve. If you don't believe it, just look at how far he's come from a mid-major point guard no major schools wanted to touch to the prospect every team wishes it had drafted.