Analyzing the NBA Combine Measurements

Analyzing the NBA Combine Measurements
May 22, 2010, 08:11 pm
Check out our measurements and see how prospects in this class stack up with players in our database from the last 10+ years.

Keep in mind that you can sort them by position and by where they were drafted with the help of the drop-down menus at the top.

Opinions on the importance of measurements vary greatly, as they are just one piece to the puzzle that determines whether a player will end up being successful. Measurements are still widely anticipated both by NBA draft fans and talent evaluators because they present a completely objective way of comparing prospects.

Here is a quick look at some of the interesting facets of this year's measurements.

Unlike last year, where we saw fairly dramatic differences in the measurements of North Carolina prospects Ty Lawson, Danny Green and Wayne Ellington, this year's measurements were mostly the same. The biggest difference is in standing reach, where Gani Lawal gained a notable inch and a half compared to last year, and Damion James gained an inch. Luke Harangody's measurements were mostly the same, albeit a bit smaller than last year in a few categories.

Gani Lawal - 2009 6' 7.75" 6' 9" 229 7' 0" 8' 10" 7.2
Gani Lawal - 2010 6' 7.5" 6' 9" 233 7' 0" 8' 11.5" 6.3

Damion James - 2009 6' 6.25" 6' 7.5" 224 7' 0.75" 8' 10" 8.2
Damion James - 2010 6' 6.25" 6' 7.75" 227 7' 0.75" 8' 11" 9.6

Luke Harangody - 2009 6' 6.25" 6' 8" 240 6' 9.75" 8' 10" 11.2
Luke Harangody - 2010 6' 6" 6'7.75" 240 6' 9.5" 8' 10" 11.1

Similarly, we see fluctuations in standing reach between measurements conducted professionally in April at the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament and those conducted in May at the NBA Combine in Chicago.

Mikhail Torrance 6' 4" NA 207 6' 6.75" 8' 5.75"
Mikhail Torrance 6' 4" 6' 5" 209 6' 7.5" 8' 7"

Average Heights/Wingspans/Standing Reaches

Of the players that were measured that are currently being projected to be drafted, here are the average heights, weights, wingspans and standing reaches, sorted by position.

See how they compare with players in years past here.

Notable measurements:

John Wall's measurements are simply outstanding for a point guard. Physically, he looks superior to Derrick Rose (6-1 ½ without shoes, 6-8 wingspan) and Russell Westbrook (6-2 ¼ without shoes, 6-7 ¾ wingspan), two players he's often compared with.

At 6-2 ¾ without shoes, with a 6-9 wingspan, Wall should have no problem defending NBA shooting guards, making him extremely versatile in the sense that he can be paired in the same backcourt with another combo guard, such as Gilbert Arenas. Add in the fact that Wall was the biggest star of the weekend in both the NBA team and media interviews, and this combine could not have gone any better for him.

The gap between Wall and Turner appears to be too wide to close at this point, barring something disastrous happening in Washington.

See how Wall stacks up historically with other point guards drafted in the top 15 in our measurements database.

Evan Turner has short arms relative to his height, coming out at a solid 6-5 3/4 without shoes, with a 6-8 wingspan. His wingspan is in fact shorter than that of John Wall, despite being 3 inches taller. That didn't seem to affect Turner at the college level as a rebounder (9.2 per game) or as a defender (he's one of the best perimeter stoppers in this draft), but it will be interesting to see how this affects his finishing ability in the NBA. Turner is considered average from an explosiveness standpoint.

Interestingly enough, Turner's measurements are quite similar to those of Brandon Roy (6-5 ¼ without shoes, 6-8 wingspan), the player he's most often compared to.

See how Turner stacks up historically with other shooting guards drafted in the top 15 in our measurements database.

DeMarcus Cousins' measurements are phenomenal. He stands 6-9 ½ without shoes, with a gigantic 7-5 ¾ wingspan and a standing reach of 9-5. He's a physical specimen at the center position, with measurements similar to that of Brook Lopez (just much bulkier), and superior to those of Dwight Howard (who was 18 at the time he was measured and could have very well grown since), Greg Oden and Al Jefferson.

The only concern is his high body fat percentage of 16.3%, which ranks as the 12th-highest figure of any player in our database. By comparison, Mike Sweetney came in at 14.1% and Shaquille O'Neal 12.2%. What's alarming here is that Cousins is considered to be in the best shape of his life at the moment. Both he and his agent are making a big deal of the fact that he's been eating as healthy (“seafood and salad diet”) and working out as intensely as he ever has. NBA teams are worried about Cousins resting on his laurels once he's been drafted and signs a contract. This measurement won't ease any of those concerns.

See how Cousins compares with other Centers drafted in the top 15 in our measurements database.

Derrick Favors' measurements (6-8 ¾ without shoes, 7-4 wingspan, 9-2 standing reach) are excellent as well, giving him enough size and length to slide into the center position (once he bulks up) and giving him terrific dimensions for a power forward. As the youngest player in the draft, Favors needs to continue to add bulk to his 245-pound frame, but that doesn't appear to be an issue at all. As time moves on, he will continue to fill out and add muscle in the weight room.

Interestingly enough, Favors' measurements compare quite favorably with those of Dwight Howard, a player he draws some (perhaps slightly optimistic) comparisons to. Howard measured just a quarter of an inch taller than Favors at the same age, was five pounds lighter and had a wingspan just half an inch longer. His measurements are comparable to the likes of Chris Bosh, Nene and Emeka Okafor, and are superior to those of Al Horford, another player who he's often compared to.

See how Favors compares with other Power Forwards drafted in the top 15 in our measurements database.

Al-Farouq Aminu measured fairly well too, coming in at 6-7 ¼ without shoes with a massive 7-3 ¼ wingspan. Despite his unimpressive interviews—he looked fairly unenthusiastic and stated repeatedly that he sees himself almost strictly as a small forward—he has enough height and length to see minutes at power forward in a small lineup. His measurements compare favorably to those of Josh Smith (6-7 without shoes, 7-0 wingspan), Jeff Green (6-7 ¾, 7-1 ¼) and Danny Granger (6-7 ½, 7-1 ½).

Wesley Johnson isn't far behind him at 6-6 ¼ without shoes with an excellent 7-1 wingspan.

While this entire class measured well compared to what we've seen in the past, there are a number of other players who stand out from the pack.

Greg Monroe not only has the size, girth and length to play the center position (at 6-9 ¾ without shoes, 247 pounds and a 7-2 ¼ wingspan), that may be his optimal position. He's a unique player when taking into account his dimensions, basketball IQ and passing ability. He looks like a pretty safe bet to be picked in the top 10. The only concern is his (slightly) higher than normal body fat percentage (11.2%), which probably wouldn't be an issue if teams didn't already have reservations about his passion for the game.

Larry Sanders' measurements (6-9 ¼ without shoes, 7-5 ¾ wingspan, 9-4 standing reach) are eerily similar to those of DeMarcus Cousins (6-9 ½, 7-5 ¾, 9-5), minus 70 pounds (292 to 222). As one NBA assistant GM told us—“if you can put 20 pounds on that kid, he [can] be an absolute force in the paint.”

Dexter Pittman is quite a unique physical specimen in his own right, measuring 6-9 ½ without shoes, with a 7-6 wingspan. He also has the biggest hands in this draft (a new stat) at 10.5 inches.

The fact that Pittman tips the scale at over 300 pounds and measuring nearly 21% body fat (fourth highest in history after Chris Marcus, Oliver Miller and James Lang) tells us that he still has a long ways to go with his conditioning. But if he's willing to commit himself, he could carve out a long and lucrative professional career.

Ekpe Udoh also measured quite nicely: a legit 6-8 ¾ without shoes, with a 7-4 ½ wingspan. He has the size and length to play either the power forward or center spot comfortably, especially if he adds weight to his 237-pound frame.

Daniel Orton's measurements are nearly identical at 6-8 ¾ without shoes, with a 7-4 ¼ wingspan. Add in the fact that he's 269 pounds and he clearly has the dimensions of a NBA center. He does need to work on his 13.8% body fat percentage though.

The freakiest measurements of all belong to Hassan Whiteside. The soon-to-be 21-year-old freshman bafflingly elected to arrive for measurements in flip-flops (a true story), which only gave him an additional inch in shoes (6-10 ½ without shoes, 6-11 ½ with)—as opposed to Cole Aldrich who gained 2 ¼ inches. With that said, he possesses one of the longest wingspans in NBA pre-draft camp history at 7-7.

Looking for a poor man's John Wall? Take a look at Dominique Jones. He tied with Wall for longest wingspan among point guards in the 2010 class at 6-9 ¼, and measured out a half an inch taller as well. Jones is getting more and more buzz as we predicted in an article a few weeks ago, which highlighted him as one of the biggest sleepers in the draft.

-Also measuring nicely among the point guards was Armon Johnson: 6-2 without shoes, with a 6-8 wingspan. Eric Bledsoe came out a bit short at 6-0 ¼ without shoes, but his 6-7 ½ wingspan does help compensate for that. On the other end of the spectrum we find Jon Scheyer, the lone player to measure a wingspan shorter than his height, at 6-4 ¾ without shoes, with a 6-3 ¼ wingspan.

Among wing players, Xavier Henry looks terrific, as expected, at 6-5 ¼ without shoes, with an excellent 6-11 ¼ wingspan. He has ample size to play either shooting guard or small forward, which should help ease his transition in defending perimeter players at the NBA level.

Terrico White doesn't always play like the point guard many project him as, but that doesn't seem to be an issue considering he's 6-3 ¾, with a 6-9 wingspan--more than adequate size for an NBA shooting guard.

White had a very good weekend here at the combine, looking smooth and polished in the drills and showing off a terrific shooting stroke. He's a chiseled specimen as well. He has an absurdly low body fat percentage of 3.7%.

At 6-2 without shoes, with a 6-7 ¼ wingspan, Avery Bradley might just be able to get by at the shooting guard position, which appears to be a more natural fit for him. Numerous NBA executives pointed out how impressed they were with him this weekend. His stock appears to be rising considerably at the moment. Adding strength to his 180-pound frame looks like a big priority for the freshman at the moment.

Willie Warren is not particularly long (6-6 wingspan), but he should be fine seeing minutes at the shooting guard position, considering his 6-2 ½ height. Measuring a legit 6-4 in shoes was a hurdle he needed to clear, and he managed to do so.

-Luke Babbitt (6-7 ½ without shoes, 6-11 ¼ wingspan) and Paul George (6-7 ¾ without shoes, 6-11 ¼ wingspan) played in the same conference, play the same position and are getting buzz from NBA executives thanks to their impressive measurements and shooting displays at the combine. Their stocks appear to be on the rise.

Gordon Hayward's wingspan won't knock anyone's socks off at 6-7 ¾, compared to his 6-8 measurement in shoes.

Patrick Patterson looks pretty solid at the power forward position, standing 6-9 and change in shoes, with a 7-1 ¼ wingspan. Combine that with his outstanding interviews in Chicago (some teams called him the most impressive interview of anyone in this class) and he seems to be doing quite well at the moment.

Ryan Richards capped off a spectacular weekend from his perspective, measuring 6-10 ½ without shoes, with a 7-1 ½ wingspan. Even though he has struggled to find a long-term home for himself in Europe, the 19-year old could very well be drafted in the second round and stashed for a year or two in the D-League. Richards is one of the biggest mystery prospects in this draft after playing in Switzerland this past season. NBA teams won't have the luxury of evaluating him at the adidas EuroCamp in Treviso from what he told us.

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