Drafted by: Denver Nuggets, No. 56 overall
Traded to: Orlando Magic for Arron Afflalo
Height/Weight: 6'6", 192 lbs
Age: 21 years old
Projected NBA Position: Shooting Guard
Pro Comparison: His father, Roy Marble
Twitter Handle: @DMarble4
Roy Devyn Marble wasn't a highly coveted NBA prospect throughout his collegiate career, but his four years at Iowa prepared him to compete for his spot in the league.
Not only did he enjoy strong junior and senior seasons, but he's got NBA experience in his genes. His father, Roy Marble, emerged from Iowa to enjoy a pro career that included two stints in the Association.
As the younger Marble looks to carve out his niche, his value is based on his scoring instincts and intangibles. Meanwhile, he doesn't dominate in any one phase of the game or have dynamic upside.
Will that be enough for him to stick and succeed?
While he doesn't boast outstanding overall physical tools, the one thing Marble has going for him is length.
He's 6'6.5" with shoes on, which is great for a shooting guard, and his 6'9" wingspan will help him make plays and get his shot off.
At 192 pounds, he's on the lighter side for a shooting guard, and his slender frame might hinder some of his playmaking and defensive exploits against stronger swingmen.
Marble will be an average athlete in the NBA, as he's not an explosive leaper and doesn't have a particularly quick first step. He'll need to use every bit of his craftiness and length to generate offense.
During his four years at Iowa, especially the last two, Marble learned how to operate as a featured scorer and attack the opponents' best defenders. He's not going to be a primary weapon in the NBA, but his college training will help him find compete and find buckets against capable stoppers.
Marble's shooting form is somewhat unorthodox, and he's probably going to have more trouble creating shots off the dribble as a pro than he did in college. The good news is that he works well away from the ball to drill catch-and-shoot opportunities off screens and spot-ups. Draft Express' Derek Bodner explains:
One area of Marble's game that he appears to be significantly more comfortable in than in years past is his ability to shoot coming off of a screen. It's a wrinkle to his game that he really began to add during his junior season...Marble moves well without the ball, cutting hard off of screens and using that to get the space needed to get a clean look at the hoop. He was fairly consistent with his feet set in general this season (39% catch and shoot), but struggled in other facets when asked to do more than that.
When he does handle the ball, Marble has a smooth mid-range stroke and plenty of size to release it. He'll also sporadically take advantage of creases on the way to the rim.
From long range, he didn't put up great numbers in college, but his predraft exploits (including 16-of-25 from NBA range at the NBA Draft Combine) have looked solid.
He's probably not going to initiate offense too much as a pro, but Marble has the ability to make smart plays and efficiently dish to his teammates.
As a senior, he dished 4.7 assists per 40 minutes compared to 2.3 turnovers. Those are great, clean numbers for someone who served as his team's top scorer and absorbed most of the game-planning from opponents.
Marble's passing ability is a result of his floor vision and unselfishness more than his ball-handling ability. So even though he might not be able to break down opponents creatively in the NBA, he'll still serve as an alert passer in the open floor.
Defense and Intangibles
Although Marble won't score in droves or athletically shine at the next level, you won't have to worry about him putting forth effort on both ends of the floor.
He moves pretty well laterally, and he has great length, which are two important building blocks for solid defense. Then, he supplies energy and ball-hawking instincts, which makes him a nice defensive candidate for the NBA. Marble plucked 2.4 steals per 40 minutes in 2013-14, which is impressive because he was already expending a bunch of energy on the other end.
And his overall motor, leadership and approach to the game shouldn't go unnoticed. Hey may not be the ideal rotational weapon, but he gives himself a chance to latch on due to his intangibles.
It's going to be tough for Marble to translate his shot-creating skills from college to the pros.
At Iowa, he was able to get away with less-than-advanced ball-handling skills and so-so athleticism. In the NBA, he won't be able to get past too many defenders.
Marble's handles aren't as tight and fluid as most scorers' are, and his step-back jumpers look slow. He'll also struggle to separate himself on drives and slashes. In short, he's not going to create too many of his own baskets off the dribble.
And then, there's his jumper. It's OK, but his lead elbow is a bit rigid and the results have been inefficient. Can he regularly bury shots enough to keep his place in the league?
If he cannot produce his own shots and make them, his role will be minimal or nonexistent.
In all likelihood, Marble will be fighting for a roster spot early in the year, as he must prove that he can find ways to score and consistently contribute.
There's a chance he could get some minutes at the back end of the lineup cycle but not much more than that. He's just not explosive or productive enough to warrant substantial minutes.
Marble is still just 21 years old, so he may still grow in many areas and iron out his ball skills. Improvements in those departments would go a long way in helping him maintain a spot in the rotation.
In a worst-case scenario, he would make minimal enhancements and fail to stay in the league long-term, much like his father. Don't worry, he'd still make plenty of money playing in China or Europe.
His best-case scenario would involve him playing as a reserve swingman. When he enters the game, he could be the third or fourth scoring option on the floor and get most of his buckets via off-ball movement.