Tony Carr NBA Draft 2018: Scouting Report for New Orleans Pelicans' Pick

C.J. Moore@@CJMooreHoopsCollege Basketball National Lead WriterJune 22, 2018

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 27: Tony Carr #10 of the Penn State Nittany Lions works against Nick Weatherspoon #0 of the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the second quarter during their 2018 National Invitation Tournament Championship semifinals game at Madison Square Garden on March 27, 2018 in New York City.  (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Abbie Parr/Getty Images

The New Orleans Pelicans have selected Tony Carr in the 2018 NBA draft with the No. 51 overall pick.

Carr put up big numbers at Penn State as a sophomore (19.6 points and 5.0 assists) and got to show his full repertoire, which included everything from isolation to pick-and-roll and post-ups. He's similar to a mid-major star who got to dominate the ball as much as he wanted, a luxury players like Steph Curry, Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum had in college. Carr's feel is advanced, and he almost has an old man's game. He's not dependent on athleticism, but he uses his body, dribble and fakes to get to his spots to score. He can score from all three levels and has good size for a point guard.

Quick hitters

Size: 6'4 ½

Weight: 198.8 pounds

Wingspan: 6'8 1/4"

Reach: 8'4" 

Pro-player comparison: Shaun Livingston

Offensive strengths

Carr has an unorthodox release on his jump shot—it comes from near his left ear—but you cannot argue with the results. He made 43.3 percent of his threes this past season and knocked down 79.9 percent of his free throws. He's solid as a catch-and-shoot shooter—45.9 percent, per Synergy, and 55.2 percent on open looks—but he generated a lot of his shots off the dribble. (Per Hoop-Math.com, 73.2 percent of his shots away from the rim were unassisted.) Carr has a slick handle and a lot of moves to throw at defenders to get them off balance.

Carr also uses his body well, and at almost 6'5”, he can back down smaller guards. He's never in a hurry, taking his time to wait for his window to get a good shot.

Carr's patience also comes in handy as a setup man. He waits for plays to develop, and he's a crafty passer. He surveys the floor and has an awareness of where everyone is. If defenders misstep, he takes advantage.

Offensive weaknesses

Carr tested as one of the worst athletes at the NBA draft combine, finishing with the ninth-slowest time in lane agility, fifth-slowest in the shuttle run and the fourth-worst max vertical. He also tied for the worst standing vertical. He's more of a smooth operator, and he figures out a way to get where he wants to go on the floor, but his lack of explosion is a detriment when he gets around the rim and has to score over length. He shot just 46.7 percent on field-goal attempts at the rim, per Hoop-Math.com.

Defensive outlook

It's hard to say what kind of defender Carr will be at the NBA level because Penn State typically hid him on lesser players, and he was more of an observer on defense than a participant. This could be because he's not a great defender, or more likely it was to conserve energy because he was such a critical part of the offense.

Carr's size will allow him to guard wings, and he'll have to be part of lineups that allow him to do so. He does not have the quickness to stay with most NBA point guards, and he's a little too upright when he's defending the ball. He also gets caught on ball screens too easily and just doesn't show a ton of fight.

Again, this sort of effort may have come down to the fact Carr was asked to do so much on offense and defense was not a top priority. Maybe in more limited minutes, his effort will improve. But his biggest hurdle to getting consistent minutes in the league is his defense.

Projected role: Second-unit point guard

Carr has enough game to be a primary scorer for a second unit. It's important that he's paired with another guard who will be able to cover the opposing team's point guard, but he has the offensive chops to be a go-to scorer off the bench.

The main concerns are he will not be able to shake NBA defenders and his lack of athleticism will be a problem, but he has enough craftiness to figure out a way to get buckets at the NBA level. His vision and passing should also translate. Most of the question marks are with his defense, but his skill and feel for the game should help him carve out a long professional career—if not in the NBA, then in Europe.

Related

    Mavs Hand Dubs Worst Home Loss Since '07

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Mavs Hand Dubs Worst Home Loss Since '07

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report

    Trae Young Floater FTW 🔥

    He pulled out the LeBron Silencer celly

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Trae Young Floater FTW 🔥

    He pulled out the LeBron Silencer celly

    Megan Armstrong
    via Bleacher Report

    Lonzo Leaving BBB for Nike? 🤔

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Lonzo Leaving BBB for Nike? 🤔

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report

    Report: Lakers Worried Over Zo's Shoes

    NBA logo
    NBA

    Report: Lakers Worried Over Zo's Shoes

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report