Jaden Ivey Compared to 'Early Russell Westbrook with a Jumper' by NBA Scout

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVMay 25, 2022

PHILADELPHIA, PA - MARCH 25: Jaden Ivey #23 of the Purdue Boilermakers warms up before the the Sweet 16 round of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament game against the St. Peter's Peacocks held at Wells Fargo Center on March 25, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)
Scott Taetsch/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Jaden Ivey is considered one of the top prospects in the 2022 NBA draft, and at least one scout offered an interesting comparison for the young player.

"Ivey is one of the best athletes in the draft. Think of an early Russell Westbrook with a jumper," a Western Conference scout told Marc Berman of the New York Post. "He needs a fast tempo to be at his best, but he'll improve any team's talent level and explosiveness."

And Matt Babcock of BasketballNews.com compared Ivey to Donovan Mitchell, per Berman.

It seems like a safe bet that Ivey will get buckets at the next level. The 20-year-old averaged 17.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game as a sophomore last season, shooting 46.0 percent from the field and 35.8 percent from three.

Ivey likely will never offer the playmaking Westbrook brought to the table in his prime, but his explosiveness should translate well.

The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor ranked Ivey as the No. 4 prospect in the class, writing, "Powerful guard with an elite first step and the kind of electric shot-making ability that could make him a star, but he needs to improve his defense."

He added that Ivey has shades of Mitchell, a "jumbo" Darius Garland and Victor Oladipo.

B/R's Jonathan Wasserman also ranked Ivey fourth on his latest big board: "There is no topping his explosiveness off the dribble, and over the past year, his improved handles and vision have helped him maximize the effectiveness of that burst. Ivey's development as a shooter and decision-maker will ultimately determine how valuable of an NBA guard he becomes."

And ESPN's Jonathan Givony projected Ivey to be off the board with the No. 5 pick to the Detroit Pistons, calling him the "most electric prospect in the class" with "the type of extra gear-changing speeds in the open floor that few NBA players possess."

So, from an athletic standpoint, Ivey looks the part of a high lottery pick and a potential future star. Westbrook averaged 15.3 points as a rookie, and the team that selects Ivey will be hoping he can make a similar splash.