Leon Powe

Leon Powe profile
Drafted #49 in the 2006 NBA Draft by the Celtics
RCSI: 11 (2003)
Height: 6'8" (203 cm)
Weight: 245 lbs (111 kg)
Position: PF
High School: Oakland Technical High School (California)
Hometown: Oakland, CA
College: California
Current Team: California
Win - Loss: 13 - 19


NBA Scouting Reports, Atlantic Division (Part One)

Jonathan Givony
Jonathan Givony
Nov 30, 2008, 10:33 am
Overview:One of the most productive backups in the league. Puts up outrageous per-minute numbers behind Kevin Garnett, scoring efficiently, rebounding the ball incredibly well, and playing excellent defense. Undersized power forward who is able to compensate for his severe lack of size with an incredible wingspan and a pair of huge, soft hands. Average athlete who lacks some explosiveness around the basket and tends to lumber a bit getting up and down the floor. Incredibly tough, strong player who comes off the bench looking to make his presence felt. Goes inside and pushes bigger players around, not backing down from anyone. Has most of his scoring opportunities created by others, but does a great job of making the most of his opportunities. Spent three injury plagued seasons at Cal, being forced to sit out for a year due to a torn ACL, which eventually dropped his draft stock dramatically. Went through a significant amount of adversity in his lifetime, which undoubtedly helped shape the player he is today. Has developed into a real asset for Boston, despite being an after-thought in the second round on draft day. Was a key cog on the 2008 NBA Championship team.

Offense: Gets most of his offense cutting to the basket, grabbing offensive rebounds and rolling off screens. Presents himself around the rim intelligently, and has great hands to make tough catches easy. A terrific finisher around the basket thanks to his length, strength and toughness. Gets to the free throw line at a terrific rate, and converts at an average percentage (71% in 07-08). Decent back to the basket threat, but relies too heavily on lowering his shoulder and bullying his way into the post, rather than utilizing finesse moves, which makes him a bit turnover prone. Possesses a streaky jumper with range out to about 17-feet. Still needs to improve the consistency of his mid-range shot to reach his full potential. Struggles putting the ball on the floor. Exceptionally poor passer who sees nothing but the rim once he touches the ball. Terrific offensive rebounder who will not hesitate for a second to put his nose into a scrum and help his team come up with a big possession. Needs to become a bit more versatile and develop his perimeter skills.

Defense: Intense, versatile defender who brings a great deal of energy off the bench. Possesses great length and does an excellent job contesting shots. Flies around the floor with great footwork and lateral quickness. Does a terrific job hedging screens and quickly recovering back onto his matchup. Strength, toughness and wingspan help compensate for his lack of size inside the post. Gets down in a fundamental stance and puts a lot of pride into locking down his man. Takes charges, hustles for loose balls, and does a lot of little things. Very foul prone, which limits his minutes to a certain extent. Has good timing as a weak-side shot-blocker.

Opportunity Knocks: Leon Powe

Eric Weiss
Eric Weiss
Nov 15, 2006, 02:21 pm
Nothing is more rewarding than seeing a late 2nd round pick get a chance to get some playing time early in the season. Injuries in the Celtics’ frontcourt and foul trouble early on in this game allowed Leon Powe to get his first crack at playing time. Powe checked in at the 2:20 mark in the first quarter and established himself early on both sides of the court. While his final stat line was impressive, 10pts 7rbs 2blks, it was Powe’s technique and assertiveness that made his performance stand out.

Powe doesn’t have great traditional height for the 4 position, but his length, strength and agility helped to mitigate much of this deficiency. Powe doesn’t posses superior interior footwork, but he has a knack for utilizing fakes, half steps, and leans to draw contact. These are good indicators of his potential in this area. In this game Powe showed a glimpse of the skill-set that could make him into a productive NBA player. The following is a breakdown of plays that detail some of the more promising elements to his game.

Hands: (1st quarter, 26 second mark)

Powe sets up on the low right block, fights Darko Milicic for position, West throws a hard inlet pass high, Powe extends fully with his left hand behind his head to coral the ball, gathers and goes into his post move in one motion…

…It was an extremely difficult angle for reception of the pass, but Powe was able to use his off-hand while under defensive duress and the ball simply stuck to his hand as if it were routine…people will remember the put-back off the offensive rebound, but it was the reception of the initial pass that showed the type of hands Powe has.

Footwork: (1st quarter 4:50 mark)

Powe starts down the land off-ball, cuts hard in front of Milicic on the strong side and seals him 8 feet from the hoop, receives the ball and starts backing him down toward the middle of the paint, sees the help defense and pulls a quick drop step back to the baseline side which gets him around Milicic and forces another shooting foul…

Powe was easily able to establish deep position and Milicic wasn’t able to walk him off the spot…Powe didn’t have any trouble working the bigger man deeper into the paint and the detected the double team right as the man came..without hesitation he made an aggressive counter move that got him in position to make a play at the basket…

Dribble drive: (1st quarter 7:23 mark)

Powe sets up on the left side of the top of the key, takes a pass from Telfair, drives through the middle of the defense and is fouled on his way to the hoop…

The move started 17ft from the basket with Tony Battie squared up 5 feet in front of Powe and Dwight Howard opposite Battie on the other side of the lane. Battie funnels Powe right to Howard, but Powe’s first step is enough for him to squeeze in between the two defenders enough to force the foul. Powe also displayed the strenghth to take a hit from both men and still power his arms up through for a bid at the hoop.

(1st quarter 3:34 mark)

Powe receives the ball on the right side of the free throw line, Milicic is 4 feet off him with Howard and Turkoglu also inside the paint, Powe makes a hard dribble to his right forcing Milicic that direction, spins left away from Milicic and into the lane stopping short of Howard and elevating for the 8 foot jumper…

Another poised outside move into close range with heavy defense on the interior. Powe was able to create the space he needed to get off a high percentage inside shot by pulling his defender out of the area he wanted to go and then countering quickly with a spin back inside for the uncontested pull-up…

Timing: (2nd quarter 9:38 mark)

Rondo gets sealed on a high screen behind the right 3pt line, Arroyo drives toward the basket uncontested, Powe releases off Milicic and comes across the lane, waits for Arroyo to jump before going up to challenge, blocks the shot…

Beyond his awareness of the play from the weakside, Powe didn’t get over anxious and cause a foul on a play that most defenders would have. He cut off Arroyo’s angle and waited for him to go into his shot and the jumped AWAY from Arroyo as he went up, using only his arm to shadow the ball while avoiding the body contact that Arroyo was trying to draw…after sending the ball the other way, Powe gets it back and makes a power move inside drawing the full body contact from Bo Outlaw, pulls the ball back on impact and lays it in for the shot and the foul…

(4th quarter 11:20 mark)

Delonte West takes a deep 3pt shot from the right side, Powe battles Howard for rebounding position, forces Howard into the circle underneath the basket, releases from Howard on the carom and gathers the ball with his left hand, spins away from the middle and up into the attempt…

Powe was able to move a larger player out of position and his transition from rebound to shot was instantaneous, he didn’t gather himself to go back up strong, instead electing to go up quickly to beat the larger defender to the basket


This isn’t an objective measure really, just a culmination of the play that Powe displayed. Beyond the skill elements he showed, Powe was aggressive and proactive with his play, which is something that has been missing at times from many of the other young players. Considering it was his first regular season action, it was a testament to his preparedness and will to come out as aggressively and effectively as he did.

Leon Powe NBA Draft Scouting Report

Jun 29, 2006, 10:41 pm
Powe has a complete floor game on both ends of the court. Powe's low-post game is strong as the constant double teams he has faced in his two years at Cal have refined his decision making. Powe keeps his head up at all times and hardly ever gets caught by the help defender. Powe prefers to go to his right both on the block and facing up, but mixes in a series of fakes, spins and drop-steps to get free for the score. Powe's hands are his greatest asset as he can finish his shot with deft touch even under heavy duress...Powe has solid athleticsim. He isn't super explosive, but has great secondary jumping quickness as well as above average fluidity and coordination....

...Powe has big hands and long, chisled arms that enable him to absorb contact well. Powe's standing reach is equivilant to a player much taller than himself and he uses it well as he shoots the ball with almost full arm extension-over 3/4 delivery. Powe has range out to the collegiate 3 point line and has solid ball handling skills for his size, although he must utilize his left hand more...Powe is also pretty vocal on the court. While he doesn't have a fiery personality, his calm and controlled demeanor helps to anchor his team and he gets his teammates into positon well. Powe is also extremely patient with his shot selection due to the continual double teams he faces on a nightly basis. It's rare to see Powe force a shot, instead he'll work off the ball to get in position for offensive rebounder, or will present himself on the cut for an easy assist. Powe patience is often rewarded with numerous trips to the free throw line where he's got a great stroke...

...Defensively, Powe is fundemental and solid. Powe uses his long frame well getting wide in his defensive stance and switching stances and distance well to make his opposition uncomfortable. Powe is a decent shot blocker, though he shows more potential than anything right now, both on the ball and off and has good instincts when going for steals. Powe makes sure to keep body seperation when going for the challenge, but is physical with his body on the man when their back is toward the basket. Powe has great lateral quickness for his size and positon which makes it tough to get around him...Powe's rebounding is by far his greatest skill. Powe anticipates rebounds before the shot hits the iron and works hard to get positon on his man. Powe is a great positional rebounder due to superior timing, but he also gets many rebounds outside his area because of his plus instincts and anticipation...

The first major weakness is the fact that Powe had to miss the better part of the last year with two major knee surgeries. Although his mobility and athleticism haven't suffered noticably, teams will be very nervous about taking a chance on a player who has been under the knife...

..Another issue for Powe is his height as he's listed at only 6'8" and 245lbs. While his size is borderline "tweener", his long arms and legs help to compensate for that. Powe can easily add another 10-15lbs onto his lower body, which is something he'll have to do if he wants to battle in the post with NBA PF's. Powe is very strong, but he either doesn't have the lower body strength to hold his position or he gets lazy against larger opponents and relies on his superior athleticism and skill to beat the man on the face-up after the catch...

Powe also has a tendency to drive right on every face-up and doesn't seem completely comfortable with the ball in his left hand....while Powe's jumper is good to 18 feet, his release isn't extremely fast, so he'll need show a bit more on the catch and shoot with tighter defense on him. Powe needs alot of polish on his on court execution without the ball. While he moves well and to the right spots, he sets very weak picks, often letting the hold disolve without effecting the assignment. Powe also must continue to work on getting low when posting up as he stands too upright. While he has good athletic ability Powe is not an athletic freak so he must utilize the fundementals of the game to excel...

The largest hurtle Powe will have to overcome is his transition into a face-up offensive threat. Powe will have to use his jump shot to set up his solid driving ability and this was not an element of his game that he utilized frequently at Cal. Powe shoots the ball with nice arc and consistent release, but it was not his primary weapon in college. while he shoots with little wasted movement, he does tend to extend his arms forward instead of extending fully above his head. Much like David West coming out of school, Powe will have to practice setting himself up off of this shot as he will not get many low-post isolation oportunities at his size.

Powe played a high level of competition in the PAC-10. Powe was the co-player of the year his sophmore season just one year after having his second knee reconstruction. Highlighting a successful season were his 20 rebound game against USC, followed by a monster 41 point effort against Oregon helped propel Cal into the NCAA tournament.

From everything that I've seen and heard from Powe I have to imagine he's got a tremendous work ethic and a desire to be great. What he's overcome already in life is a testament to how dedicated he is to what he does. He's got the physical tools to be a good player if he applies himself to maximizing his own ability...the biggest fear is that his knees won't be able to survive the rigors of being a big-minute starter and that he'll break down with extended court time.

While I don't know enough about the stability of the repaired knee, I'm sure it will be an area for concern for many NBA scouts when they watch him play...That being said, I think Powe has the frame to easily add the needed weight and leg strength necissary to put a legit power forward's body on the court. Once he fully develops it, Powe's face-up game will allow him to stretch defenses and get to the rack when he baits his opponent into rushing at his jump shot. His ability to handle the ball and go up quickly will help him to finsish or be rewarded with free throws, an area he is already adept at.

This profile has yet to be completed.

This profile has yet to be completed.

NCAA Tournament: Atlanta Bracket NBA Draft Prospects

Jonathan Givony
Jonathan Givony
Mike Schmidt
Mike Schmidt
Landry Fields
Landry Fields
Eric Weiss
Eric Weiss
Mar 15, 2006, 03:58 am
Leon Powe has been working all season under the radar in what has turned out to be a pretty underwhelming Pac-10 season. Powe put up very solid numbers in his second season with the Bears, but has had to live with the shadow of doubt created by the knee injuries that forced him to miss lots of playing time--including all of last season.

Powe plays in a very methodical offensive system that doesn't give him a chance to show the full extent of his athletic ability, which would do wonders for scouts’ concerns about his reconstructed knee. His huge numbers on the boards have certainly gotten the attention of game announcers, who have all walked away impressed by his tenacity and ability to let the game come to him.

Still, Powe's overall court game is more subtle than spectacular and the conservative, low scoring Cal offense does him no favors. Powe will need to get at least a couple of tournament games under his belt this year to get the national exposure he needs to garner 1st round attention. Without the buzz created by some big national TV performances Powe will likely be heading back to Berkley unless he doesn’t mind being a 2nd round pick, a precarious situation for a 23 year old junior.

Top 15 NBA Draft Prospects in the Pac-10

Oct 19, 2005, 03:09 pm
It’s been some time since Leon Powe put on his uniform, but there is little doubt that he will be one of the more dominant players in the conference this season. Playing on a bad knee, he still dominated the conference as a freshman. After ACL surgery and a year of rehab, Powe looks to pick up where he left off. While it’s hard to say for sure how a player so reliant on his explosiveness will bounce back, Powe looked good over the summer and will be the undisputed first option for Ben Braun and the Golden Bears. Powe is a bit undersized, but makes up for it with the aforementioned bounce, brute strength, and huge wingspan. It wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see Powe bounce back with an All-American type of season, and end up as a first round pick down the road, especially if his knee problems check out OK in physicals.


DraftExpress Shop