R.J. Hunter is a shooting guard from Georgia State University. Hunter is 6’6 with a wingspan of 6’11. For the season, he averaged, 37.0 minutes per game, 19.7 points per game, 4.7 rebounds per game, 3.6 assists per game, 2.1 steals per game, 1.0 blocks per game, while shooting 39.5% from the field, and 30.5% from three.
- Top three shooter in this draft class
- Smooth shot
- Has the range to hit any shot
- Has great confidence in his shot
- Good pick-and-roll potential
- Great free throw shooter
- Uses height and length to get rebounds
- Above average defender
- High basketball IQ
- Humble leader
- Needs to add strength to entire body
- Struggles against physical opponents
- Liitle ability to create his own shot
- Tendency to keep shooting even when the shots are not falling
- Needs to improve efficiency for all of his shots
- Struggled against tougher opponents in college
R.J. Hunter is your next three point specialist at the NBA level. Hunter has a great, smooth shot that he can hit from anywhere. His shot never lacks confidence, which is a good and bad thing, as when the shots are not falling, Hunter will still keep shooting, but when they are falling his confidence skyrockets even more. That leads us into Hunter needing to work on his overall efficiency as a player. Once Kevin Ware and Ryan Harrow started playing well with Hunter, that is when took the next step in his development. Even with these two, and primarily a spot-up shooter, Hunter shot below 40% from the field. At the next level, if he is going to make it this is unacceptable and he will need to improve on this. Although, usually a spot-up shooter, Hunter has begun to work on attacking the lane, and getting to the line, where he is deadly. Hunter must add some strength to his body as well. When he plays against more physical opponent’s, they almost always overpower him leaving him to be suspect on defense. If you take away this flaw in his defensive game, Hunter is an above average defender. He does struggle against quicker opponents, but uses his height and length to recover. This height and length is also what he uses to get rebounds, which he is pretty good at. Overall, Hunter is a three point specialist at the next level, with not much potential to be a starter. Hunter will likely be getting selected between 17-25, with the Cleveland Cavaliers or Memphis Grizzlies most likely to select his services. Once in the NBA, Hunter will likely garner a lot of time on the bench untill he becomes a consistent three point threat for the likely playoff team he will be playing for. Given a few years, I expect Hunter to be a household name for basketball viewers as he lights it up from deep.
There is a lot of people who want to make the comparison to Kevin Martin, which is fair, but that is an almost unreachable ceiling for Hunter to hit, considering he lacks a good majority of the skills Martin has. Belinelli is a better comparison, in the fact, Hunter more accurately portrays Belinelli’s skillset. Hunter is not nearly as popular as Belinelli was coming into the draft, but Belinelli was from Italy, and did they love him over there, evening nicknaming him Marco Jordan, as their version of Michael Jordan. Now to start with the comparisons. Belinelli and Hunter both possess great, smooth shots that allow them to hit from anywhere on the court. Neither player lacks confidence in their shot. Belinelli plays much better when there is a ball dominant point guard on the floor, and I expect this to be true for Hunter as well. Both players are not athletic freaks, not will they amaze you with playmaking abilities. Both players offer pick-and-roll potential, but without good ball handling skills this could also limit them from attacking the rim, and being a spot-up shooter only. Defensively, both players do not offer much. Both have good size and length, but are in need of adding strength. They can both be decent one-on-one defenders, but get beaten by stronger and quicker opponents. Overall, Belinelli has a had a solid NBA career, with his services always in demand. Hunter, should expect the same type of NBA career. Although most would consider using a first round pick on a role player ludicrous, people who possess skillset similar to Hunter are always in high demand, and that is why Hunter deserves a first round selection.
By: Mac Crowe, @Mac_Truck17