|Team: NON-NBA College Team:
H: 6' 4"|
W: 221 lbs
(28 Years Old)
|Agent: Greg Haenke ||
High School: Paulsboro
Hometown: Paulsboro, NJ
Best Case: Shorter Eddie Jones
Worst Case: Terrell Myers
|Height w/o Shoes||Height w/shoes||Weight||Wingspan||Standing Reach||Body Fat||No Step Vert||Max Vert||Bench Press||Lane Agility||3/4 Court Sprint||Class Rank|
|6' 3"||6' 4.5"||221||6' 8.5"||8' 1.5"||6.0||33.0||38.5||25||11.61||3.29||2|
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|Orlando Pre-Draft Camp: Day Three|
June 1, 2007
In a camp that is proving to be tough for non-floor general guards, Russell Carterís play has been nothing short of underwhelming. After the dominant Portsmouth performance, Carter has struggled in Orlando with his outside shooting and just hasnít shown much to separate himself from the pack.
Carter has never been much of a creator for himself, so when that spot up jumper doesnít go down it is hard for him to make much of a contribution on the offensive end. But the volume shooter seemed to be pressing things this morning, firing up quick shots outside the flow of the offense and not really making an impact in any other way. There were a couple of hard-nosed slashes to the rim, but his lack of size certainly limits his upside as a traditional wing slasher. There were also several more instances of sloppy ballhandling, which is a major reason why he hasnít developed any sort of midrange game.
This evaluation may come off a bit harsh, but Carter is certainly in need of a turnaround in game 3. He certainly has a handful of tools that could be useful to an NBA team, but needs to find his shot from beyond the arc and probably isnít going to get the consistent looks to do that here. His Portsmouth camp was outstanding, but this setting has brought a handful of his weaknesses to the forefront.
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Orlando Pre-Draft Camp: Day Two
May 30, 2007
After emerging as a prospect during his senior season at Notre Dame, Russell Carter moved on to the Portsmouth Invitational where his strong performance continued to aide his NBA hopes. Projected as a second round pick, expectations were running high for him entering the pre-draft camp in Orlando. Carter started camp with a poor performance statistically but still managed to have a positive overall impact on the game.
The pull-up jumper was a strong tool for Carter this season, though he couldnít get a single one to fall today. All 8 of his points came off of spot-up jumpers from around 20 feet, with 3 of them coming in transition. Carter took the ball to the basket only once today, showing his explosiveness and body control on a reverse lay-up attempt that rolled off the front of the rim.
The defensive end of the floor was a different story from the guard out of Notre Dame, as he played lockdown defense on both Sun Yue and J.R. Reynolds. Carter uses his muscular frame in combination with good length to limit the driving ability of opposing players, and his ability to close out quickly allows him to contest most of the jumpers taken by his opposition. In an environment where shoot first guards thrive, it was refreshing to see a guard concentrate on taking an opposing player out of his game.
Russell Carter has both the athleticism and the shooting stroke for the NBA, though he has a few limitations at this point. For a 2-guard, it will be important for his ball handling to improve, and he will always lack the ideal size for his position. Still, he has the potential to get hot and improve his stock with a strong offense showing as the week progresses.
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West Coast Workout Swing: Day 2 (Joakim Noah, Corey Brewer, etc)
May 17, 2007
This was Russell Carterís first day at the Home Depot Center due to Notre Dameís late academic schedule, but unfortunately for us, even that was cut short because of a minor ankle injury he suffered mid-way through the day. Thatís not going to affect his draft status in the short or long term, or especially his plans to cash in on the invite to the Orlando pre-draft camp he scored while we were here, but it did stop us from seeing anything more than half a workout or so.
What we did see confirmed a lot of what we felt about him coming out of Portsmouth. His shot is incredibly smooth, with effortless mechanics and a very quick release. The ball barely touched the net on most of the three pointers he hit, hovering around 80% in the college and NBA shots we charted.
We also saw some nice athleticism in the warm-ups to complement his NBA caliber body, but as we said, there wasnít much time to do more evaluating than that since Carter tweaked his ankle. It will be fun to see how he fares in the pre-draft camp.
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Portsmouth Invitational Tournament, Day Four (part two)
April 9, 2007
Possibly the most impressive single-game performance of the entire tournament belonged to Notre Dameís Russell Carter. Besides the fact that it came in the Championship game and was the dominant reason why his team won the PIT, it did a great job demonstrating just how effectively his skill-set can translate over to a hypothetical role in the NBA.
Carter made a great living tonight from mid-range and beyond the arc. He was absolutely phenomenal catching and shooting coming off screens, and also was a potent weapon spotting up off the dribble any time the defense gave him even an inch of daylight. He has a super quick release, terrific elevation on his jumper, effortless mechanics, and outstanding instincts for how to move off the ball. Itís quite clear from watching him here that the transition to the NBA 3-point line will not be very difficult at all for him, and that the inch or two he might lack in prototypical size for his position can be neutralized by the way he gets his shot off. Furthermore, he also possesses a fairly effective mid-range game pulling up off the bounce after a short dribble or two to create space for himself, sometimes adding in a little fade-away action with nice body control for good measure.
More than just a one-dimensional shooter, though, Carter did a terrific job showing off his excellent defense and passing ability. Built like an NFL fullback with excellent quickness and plenty of smarts, Carter is a very willing and able perimeter defender. He puts lots of pride into this part of his game, getting in his matchupís chest and being extremely physical, staying in front of his man nicely and being very active getting in the passing lanes and coming up for steals.
This got him in transition on a number of occasions during this game, where he showed awesome strength finishing with contact around the basket for a layup or emphatic dunk, and also a high skill level and nice decision making skills pulling up off the dribble from mid-range for a sweet looking jumper.
Despite being seemingly unable to do any wrong tonight no matter what he did, Carter did not force the issue even one bit, doing an admirable job creating shots for his teammates, as evidenced by his 7 assists. Even though they are somewhat similar players and there could have been some concern that their skill-set would overlap with one another, Carter and DeíAngelo Alexander showed great chemistry throughout the tournament and again made some incredibly unselfish passes to each other all game long. Carter found Alexander beautifully in transition on two separate occasions, and also had a terrific drop-off to a streaking Anthony Tolliver on another occasion. Itís obvious from watching him play on the court and seeing how he handled himself off it that the Notre Dame senior is a very intelligent player and person. He really seems to enjoy playing basketball, having a permanent smile on his face for every minute heís on the court. Today, though, he gave the NBA executives that were still in attendance (like Minnesota TíWolves GM Kevin McHale for example) plenty to smile about too for staying in Virginia rather than running off to attend the Hoop Summit JUCO all-star game in Memphis.
In terms of weaknesses, Carter has two glaring ones, one that can be corrected and one that probably canít. The first would be his ball-handling skills. Against average competition like he faced here at PIT, Carter can create his own shot only semi-effectively, much preferring to have a point guard like DaShaun Wood next to him to can make him solely a finisher. His left hand is especially poor, being unable to dribble or finish without being a complete liability. The second would be his size, which is not ideal at 6-4. As mentioned already, though, he does make up for this to a certain extent with his strength, athleticism, and the quickness in which he can get his shot off, along with his high release point.
Carter was, to us, the best NBA draft prospect here, and has moved firmly into the second round of the draft on our board thanks to his outstanding performance here. He will still need to do it all over again at the pre-draft camp in Orlando to guarantee getting drafted, but we have very little doubt in our mind now that he has what it takes to be an effective NBA rotation player.
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Portsmouth Invitational Tournament: Day Three
April 7, 2007
Russell Carter had a good second day here at Portsmouth, continuing to show his good long-range game and ability to finish at the basket, but not showing much in terms of dribble creation or mid-range shooting. He also did a good job on the defensive end, and has shown a good work ethic and energy level throughout. Carterís lone three-point field goal in this game came off a smooth-looking curl, but he also hit two from NCAA three-point range, one coming off a curl and another a spot-up, which he also was fouled on for the and-1.
As mentioned earlier, Carter didnít get much done from the mid-range, as he rarely does, and whenever he went inside the three-point arc, he took it all the way to the basket, showing off his impressive ability to draw contact and finish at the rim. Carter got to the rim multiple times in this game, drawing contact to get to the free throw line on many occasions. He mostly got to the rim on cuts and straight-line drives, showing off a finger roll on one occasion and a reverse lay-up on another. He also showed the ability to pass the ball off once in the lane, as well as in transition and by feeding the post. He set up more open shots than he had assists, as his teammates didnít always finish.
Defensively, Carter used his full physical abilities to disrupt his man, getting his body up into him and moving fairly well laterally to stay in front, sometimes recovering with a poke-away from behind when he didnít. At times he gets a bit too aggressive bumping with his strong upper body on his man, getting him some foul calls for the refs, but for the most part he does a good job intimidating and disrupting his man. At the next level, he may not have the quickness to defend some quicker shooting guards, nor the height to defend some larger small forwards, but there will definitely be many reserve players and some starters heíll be capable of defending. As of now, Carter has an outside chance of being drafted, though he should be a lock to be invited to Orlando and get into some training camps, where he can use his notable skill-set and excellent work ethic to find someplace he can try to earn a roster spot.
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NCAA Tournament: Stock Watch (round of 64, Friday games)--Down/Neutral
March 16, 2007
After a stellar Big East Tournament, Carter failed to show up for Notre Dameís NCAA Tournament match up with Winthrop. The First Team All-Big East selection struggled the entire game as Winthropís defense frustrated the sharp shooter.
Carter, who usually relies on his outside shooting to set up his drives to the basket, didnít hit a single shot outside of the paint, an almost unthinkable statistic for a shooter of his caliber. He hit a couple of big lay ups down the stretch that were part of a furious second half Irish drive, who found themselves down by as much as 20 at some points. In the end though, Carter could never break out of his shooting slump, something he had been able to do at other points in the season. What made things even worse for Carter was his inability to create for teammates when he was having a poor shooting night. Granted, this isnít his strong point, but on a night where he shot 0-8 from outside the paint, Carter didnít record a single assist.
Already on the NBA draft bubble, this game certainly did not help Carterís case. More scouts are watching players during the NCAA Tournament than at any other point during the season. Carter, who did have a fantastic senior season, will now need to have do well at Portsmouth and in private workouts in order to erase this abysmal performance from the minds of NBA scouts.
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NBA Draft Stock Watch: Conference Tournament Week (Part One)
March 12, 2007
It took Russell Carter until his senior year to become a star, but he has been worth the wait for Irish fans. The First Team All-Big East selection put together impressive back-to-back games in the Big East Tournament this past week against stiff competition. He relied mainly on his perimeter shooting, his strongest offensive weapon, while bringing his hardnosed style of play to the defensive end.
Carter is the text book definition of a shooter: he never met a shot he didnít like. Over half of his shots from his two combined games this past week were from beyond the arc, a spot that he is shooting better than 40% from on the season. Typically he floats around the perimeter looking to spot up and fire, but this makes him a weak player in regards to moving without the basketball. When he has the basketball though, Carter is not afraid to shoot by any mean, often taking shots that are beyond even NBA range, as well as shooting with a hand in his face. He tends to be streaky, often hitting his threes in bunches, but like any outside gunner will shoot himself out of a cold spell.
Despite his love for the deep three, Carter is a threat to drive to the basket. At 6-4 and 200 pounds he is more than able to take some contact in the lane going to the hole, but this extra bulk does hinder is first step somewhat. He still manages to get to the rim when he wants to, but often chooses to pull up and shoot off the dribble, something he has continued to improve upon. Carterís ability to knock down shots off the dribble has made him that much more of a threat on offense, especially in transition where he loves to stop and pop. He gets into trouble sometimes though with his shot selection, fading away many times at the slightest hint of pressure from his defender. Carter didnít put the ball on the floor very often in either the Syracuse of Georgetown game though, opting for a high percentage of his shots from the outside.
In transition Carter is a real asset due to his hustle and explosive leaping ability. He had three offensive rebounds against Georgetown, a very respectable number for a smaller shooting guard. His hustle on both ends of the floor makes him the kind of player coaches love. He may have questionable shot selection from time to time, but he makes up for it with his reckless abandon hitting the glass. The only reason Carter doesnít average more than his 4.9 rebounds per game is because he is often giving up four of five inches to the guys he is battling.
Carterís downfall offensively is two-fold. He doesnít move well without the basketball, (although he did a pretty good job against Georgetown), often just floating around the perimeter waiting for the basketball. He also isnít very strong at creating for his teammates. Carter is more than able to create his own shot, he excels at that, but often when he draws double teams going to the basket he forces tough shots rather than looking for open teammates. He is also a rather inconsistent player, as many shooters are.
On the other end of the floor Carter helps out defensively the most with his aggression on the boards. However, with his stockier frame for a guard, he can be beaten off the dribble by quicker perimeter players. His off the ball defense has been pretty solid, his good anticipation skills have allowed him to garner 1.6 steals per game this season, which he often turns into points at the other end of the floor. Carter is very strong for a guard, so much in fact that when Notre Dame has gone to a 2-3 zone this season Carter has been one of the players down low. He blocks out well on shots, but again with his size is often out rebounded despite his fantastic effort.
Carter has the makings of a blue collar role player in the NBA. His shooting abilities from the outside and off the dribble are at the professional level, and his hustle will ensure that his services are wanted somewhere, especially since he possesses a very valuable German passport. He is the kind of player that could hang on in the league for several years, bouncing from team to team and seeing fairly good minutes on the floor. His strong showing in the Big East quarterfinals and semifinals should have helped his stock in the eyes of many scouts; he shot well from the outside and showed his tremendous hustle all weekend long.
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Weekly Top Performers (12/12): Part 1
December 13, 2006
It has been a long journey for Carter, going from unheralded, last-minute signee to benchwarmer, to defensive specialist, to star. But it appears that is where Carterís path is taking him, based on the steady improvement the sturdily built wing has shown throughout his career. He is now averaging nearly 17 points, 6 rebounds and 2.5 steals, while shooting over 45% from beyond the arc on the season.
He is also clearly more than just a producer for Brey, given the way that he energized the crowd and his teammates down the stretch with his demonstrative, fiery style of play. Carter is emerging as the vocal, veteran presence the Notre Dame locker room was critically lacking a season ago.
It doesnít appear that the 6í4 Carter would have a shot at the highest level upon first glance. He isnít the greatest ballhandler in the world, and his thicker frame means his first step isnít exactly in that ďblow-byĒ category. But at the same time, Carter always finds ways to make things happen. He does a great job of using his body to his advantage off the bounce, and is certain to shock you with a powerful finish or two this season if you arenít looking for it.
Carter doesnít have a prototype shooterís release, but manages to keep things simple. In that Michael Redd sort of way, he lets the game come to him and has a way of always realizing what the defense is giving him. Carter has a knack for hitting the contested outside jumper, and appears quite calm with the ball in his hands.
On the other end of the court, Carter is a true menace. The linebackerís frame is put to full use, and he is truly relentless in terms of physicality and mentality.
Russell Carter isnít going to pop up on the must-have list of any NBA team this June. He will have to fight for a spot in Chicago, and then fight for a roster spot in training camp.
But given look on his face as he charged down the court after coming up with that game (season?) (program?) saving steal, I wouldnít put beating the odds and emerging as a longtime NBA journeyman past Russell Carter for even a second.
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