Syracuse Basketball: Breaking Down Michael Carter-Williams' NBA Potential

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Syracuse Basketball: Breaking Down Michael Carter-Williams' NBA Potential
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Syracuse sophomore guard Michael Carter-Williams announced on April 10 that he will enter the 2013 NBA draft, forgoing his remaining two years of eligibility.

Carter-Williams enjoyed a very good sophomore campaign and likely played himself onto the radars of many of the general managers in the NBA with his stellar performance in the NCAA tournament.

This year’s draft has no shortage of guards, but point guards are another story.

Especially elite point guards.

The question that must be asked is whether or not Carter-Williams is an elite point guard. Some of his contemporaries thought to enter the draft were Big 12 Player of the Year Marcus Smart and Naismith Award winner Trey Burke, but the quality of point guard takes a big drop after those three.

Now it seems that Smart will return to Oklahoma State for his sophomore, thinning the herd even more.

Consequently, unless there are plans to convert Kansas’ Ben McLemore or Indiana’s Victor Oladipo into point guards, Carter-Williams should be one of the first three point guards taken in the draft. What remains to be seen is which teams will need point guard help and which position those teams will draft from.

How Carter-Williams performs in the pre-draft camp could place him somewhere outside of the top five or six picks if he does well or knock him down to the mid-teens if he fails to impress.

The lottery for the NBA draft will take place on May 21, with the actual draft commencing on June 27 in Madison Square Garden.

The only certainty is that he will be drafted in the first round.

How well he will mesh into the NBA, however, is anybody’s guess.

A successful NBA point guard must be an excellent ball-handler, have great court vision, be an able defender and, most importantly, be a great passer.

Other qualities, such as the ability to create a shot, to draw defenders and get teammates open, shooting proficiency and quickness, are also integral pieces of a guard’s success.

Let’s take a look at the game of Michael Carter-Williams, the positive and negative aspects of his play and his prospects for a successful NBA career.

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