|- Ability to get to free throw line|
|- Mid-range game|
|- Mix between scoring/passing|
|- Pick and roll play|
|- Transition play|
|- Ball-handling skills w/either hand|
|- Change of gears/Hesitation moves|
|- Commitment to playing defense|
|- Strong Intangibles|
|- Winning mentality|
|- Work ethic|
|- Basketball instincts|
|- Assist to turnover ratio|
|- Court vision|
|- Solid frame|
|- Ability to shoot off the dribble|
|- Perimeter shooting ability|
|- Quick release|
|- Dominant ball-handler|
|- Defensive potential|
|- Ability to finish around basket|
|- Size for position|
|- Inconsistent shooter|
|Top 25s - Full List|
|Team: Pacers College Team:
H: 5' 11"|
W: 172 lbs
(27 Years Old)
|RSCI: 30||Agent: Thad Foucher ||
High School: Brother Martin
Hometown: New Orleans, LA
Pick 9 in 2008 by Bobcats
Best Case: Better Version Of Jameer Nelson
Worst Case: Dashaun Wood
|Year||Source||Height w/o Shoes||Height w/shoes||Weight||Wingspan||Standing Reach||Body Fat||No Step Vert||Max Vert|
|2008||NBA Pre-Draft Camp||5' 10"||5' 11.5"||172||6' 3.5"||7' 10.5"||8.1||28.5||35.0|
Basic Per Game Statistics - Comprehensive Stats - Statistical Top 25s
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Rookie Retrospective: D.J. Augustin|
January 30, 2009
In our newest installment of our “Rookie Retrospectives” series, we’ll be analyzing the play of former Texas Longhorn standout D.J. Augustin. After two years under Rick Barnes, D.J. Augustin entered the 2008 NBA draft as the most decorated point guard in his class. An Academic All-American and Bob Cousy Award winner, scouts acknowledged his high basketball IQ, but questioned how his size would project to the next level. Leading into the draft, most experts predicted the Bobcats would select Brook Lopez if available, but Head Coach Larry Brown pushed for D.J. Augustin and felt he had the essential tools to become a great NBA floor general. As he’s acclimated to the demands of the NBA, Augustin has provided Charlotte with a great scoring punch off the bench, as well as a solid distributor at the backup point guard spot.
Rookie Retrospective: D.J. Augustin
Point Guard, 5’10, 180, 1987, Charlotte Bobcats
Part One: Point Guard Skills & Decision Making
“Augustin is remarkably well-rounded for such a young prospect, but the aspect of his game that immediately sticks out is how he plays the game under control. His fantastic 2/1 Ast/TO ratio doesn't tell the entire story here, as Augustin plays at very high speeds - his explosiveness, quick hands and court vision allow him to weave in and out of traffic at will- and gets the most out of his ball-handling ability while usually managing to keep himself out of turnover situations.”
-NCAA Weekly Performers - 3/8/07, Part One
“In terms of his point guard game, Augustin also looks as good as ever running his team’s offense and managing the tempo, dishing out assists every which way, whether it be feeding the post, pushing the ball in transition, drive-and-dishing, or just finding open shooters on the perimeter. He gets the tendency to hold on to the ball at times, but it’s often due to lack of movement from his teammates, while he waits for something to develop. Augustin’s looked really good in transition thus far, keeping his head up and making accurate long passes to get easy baskets for his teammates. He’s also looked very good adjusting with the ball in mid-air in the halfcourt, being able to find an open man if he gets caught in a tough position.”
-NCAA Weekly Performers - 12/12/07, Part One
Since arriving in Charlotte, Augustin has displayed good court vision and the ability to consistently put his teammates in positions to score, especially in transition. During his days at Texas, he proved more than capable of making plays at full speed –a quality that has transitioned smoothly to the NBA level due in large part to his basketball IQ. Augustin may not be a freak athlete like most under-sized point guards, but he’s no slouch, and optimizes his quickness by changing speeds effectively which allows him to get around most defenders and attack the paint. When he can attack the rim with the defense off-balance, whether that occurs on the fast break or in a half-court setting, he has the ability to create open looks for himself and others.
Augustin's experience with the pick and roll at Texas has also helped him adapt to the NBA, where the pick and roll accounts for 45% of his offensive possessions. Combining his solid quickness and high basketball IQ, Augustin uses ball screens well, and has proven to be more effective when facing a double team off the screen (1.14 PPP) than a straight up defensive approach (0.84 PPP). This is because he’s more adept at finding a cutting big man than shooting a mid-range jump shot off the dribble. Even if defenses don’t hedge aggressively, the pick and roll forces Augustin’s man to fight over the topside of the ball screen since he’s such an effective 3-point shooter.
As evidenced by his solid assist numbers and turnover ratio (4.1 APG – 4th among rookies; 2.1 Ast/TO – 3rd among rookies), Augustin usually makes fundamentally sound plays, a testament to both his cerebral playing style and Larry Brown's coaching demands. These statistics practically mirror his college production in these categories; however they are also a good reflection of both his strengths and weaknesses as a playmaker and a scorer.
Even though Augustin has shown promise as an NBA floor general, he is certainly guilty of his share of rookie mistakes. In many instances, Augustin uses his quickness to get into the paint and penetrates too deep before shooting. Already at a disadvantage because of his height, this over-penetration forces Augustin to alter his shot, drastically lowering his field goal percentage. Many of the passes that he could sneak out of the paint as a collegiate now turn into easy transition opportunities for opponents. If he begins shooting more pull up jumpers from 12-15 feet and doesn’t try and force things as often, Augustin should see an increased number of open looks leading to better offensive efficiency.
Part Two: Scoring Ability
“Augustin also possesses a very effective perimeter shot, with a good number of his looks coming off the dribble. Last season, he was the only point guard in the country to shoot above 40% from the three point line and have a 2 to 1 assist to turnover ratio, an impressive feat for a freshman on a team filled with underclassman. His shooting percentage looks more impressive when you factor in the degree of difficulty on some of the shots he attempted. Augustin lacks the ideal elevation you’d like to see from a small guard, though he is helped by a quick release and a very consistent stroke.”
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12 (Part One: #1-#5) - 10/8/07
After a two-year stint at Texas, few questioned Augustin’s shooting ability; however, many scouts were concerned he wouldn’t efficiently score against larger and more physically gifted NBA defenders. While he has adapted to the deeper three-point line (39%, 2nd among rookies), Augustin’s production from two-point range has been absolutely dismal through the first half of his rookie season. On film, Augustin showed a very consistent outside stroke and solid shooting mechanics, yet his 37% shooting percentage from inside 17 feet certainly has the Bobcats concerned. According to Synergy Sports Technology, Augustin is finishing just 43% of his attempts around the rim, down from 49% last year at Texas.
This inadequacy can be attributed to Augustin’s short 5’11 stature and the fact that he now faces much better help side defenders than he saw at the collegiate level. When he attacks the basket, he’s now guarded by much lengthier players, which forces him to fade away or use other crafty moves to score the ball. Instances where he forces a drive to the rim and alters his shot in mid-air have greatly hindered his NBA shooting percentages.
Augustin has proven over the past few seasons that he is an elite spot-up shooter (NBA – 43%, 1.29 PPP; NCAA – 44%, 1.27 PPP); however, he’s been minimally effective when shooting pull-up jumpers off the dribble. Up to this point in his rookie season, he’s shooting just 37% on dribble jumpers, averaging only 0.89 PPP. Improvement in this mid-range area is critical to the development of every young guard and D.J. Augustin is certainly not an exception to this rule. The lack of elevation he gets when shooting from the outside has made it even tougher for his to become an effective pull up jump shooter.
One bright spot for Augustin has been his free throw shooting. He’s currently shooting 92% from the charity stripe, good for sixth in the NBA. While his percentage is vastly improved from his 78% average last year at Texas, he’s only attempting 3.4 free throw per game. While that number could rise marginally over time as Augustin becomes more adept inside the arc, he isn’t the type of player that is going to be seeking out contact at the rim in an effort go to the line. However, he will be a great player to have on the floor in crunch time.
Part Three: Athleticism
“ His 5'11 height somewhat limits his upside at the next level, but he has the quickness and skill set to make up for it. He doesn't quite display the athleticism of a Terrell Brandon, but probably belongs in that mold for play style comparisons. Augustin can probably add a bit more strength/explosiveness with some time in the weight room, but one really has to stretch to find any sort of hole in his game, beyond his shortcomings defensively.”
-Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12 (Part One: #1-#5) - 10/8/07
During his college career, we saw a very skilled player with a great feel for the game, who was limited by his lack of height. As predicted, Augustin’s court savvy has translated favorably to the NBA, and he has used his understanding of the game and sound ball handling abilities to set up teammates in a variety of ways. However, there are still significant concerns about Augustin’s athleticism with regard to his quickness, leaping ability, and strength.
While he possessed a fairly strong frame for the college game, Augustin will have to continue to improve in the weight room so he can contend with taller, stronger NBA guards, especially those that spend time in the post. Added strength would also allow Augustin to improve in one other important area: finishing at the rim. Improvements in each of these categories would certainly increase Augustin’s contributions.
In terms of quickness, Augustin is not considered an elite prospect; however, he moves very swiftly on offense by changing speeds constantly and keeping the ball in his strong hand when facing pressure. Also, opposing guards are forced to crowd Augustin because of his outside shooting ability, which in turn opens up drive-and-kick opportunities for Charlotte’s shooters. Defensively, Augustin does a solid job of staying between his man and the bucket, but improved strength and quickness would increase his overall effectiveness on both ends of the floor.
Finally and most importantly, Augustin must spend time in the offseason improving his overall explosiveness. Offensively, Augustin struggles mightily finishing at the rim and elevating on pull-up jump shots, and on the defensive side of the ball he doesn’t always contest taller shooters. By continuing to improve his understanding of the game and dedicating more time to weight training and plyometrics, Augustin may become a solid NBA starter for years to come.
Part Four: Defense
AT A GLANCE: D.J. Augustin
-Commitment to playing defense.
-NBA Draft Prospect Profile: D.J. Augustin
“Right off the bat we see a lot of the things we wanted to look for in our preview. Derrick Rose took D.J. Augustin down to the mid-post, where his height was just too much for him to handle, even though he did everything humanly possible to try and contest his shot.”
- Blogging Through the Elite Eight (Part Two) -3/11/2008
During his stint at Texas, Augustin was viewed primarily as an offensive player. His defensive statistics (NCAA – 1.3 STLPG), though solid, didn’t jump off the box score. Fortunately, Augustin had an advantage in quickness and basketball IQ over his collegiate counterparts, which prevented him from becoming a defensive liability. Scouts rarely questioned his effort on the defensive end, since he usually stayed between his man and the hoop and rarely got beat off the dribble. Yet due to his lack of size (he measured just 5-10 without shoes) Augustin continued to face criticism about his defensive potential at the NBA level.
At the midpoint of his rookie season, Augustin has answered the critics by developing into a steady defensive player in the Bobcats rotation. Much like he did at Texas, he uses quick feet and a great understanding for the game to keep his man out of the lane. And although his steals numbers are down from college (NBA – 0.8 steals-per-40, down from 1.4 per-40), Augustin has developed into an average on-ball defender in the NBA. While this might not seem like a compliment, he is doing a little better than scouts were predicting before draft night.
Augustin’s struggles on the defensive end stem from his lack of size and explosiveness. Because of his length issues, Augustin isn’t a factor in passing lanes, and his lack of elite quickness makes it tough for him to defend the more athletic point guards in the League. Another downfall created by his lack of size and strength is his inability to contest interior shots and provide any sort of resistance in the post. On the whole, he seems willing to make a solid defensive effort and takes few risks in the passing lanes, which makes him a middle-of-the-road defender at best. In order to climb among the NBA ranks, he will need to become more physical on the ball and use his anticipation and solid quickness to compensate for his lack of height and vertical explosiveness. If he improves in these areas, as most lottery picks eventually do, we may see him as an NBA starter sooner than previously thought.
Part Five: Intangibles (Leadership & Poise)
“He just does what you ask him to do, without exception,” Brown said after a minicamp practice this week. “I knew he was a good player, but he’s far exceeded my expectations.”
“It’ll be neat because once the veterans come in I think he’ll endear himself to all those guys, because if you get open he’s going to get you the ball,” Brown said. “He thinks pass first. He gets you into what you want to do. He gets the ball to the right people. He’s real good.”
-Augustin Makes First Impression – 7/12/08
When he is on the court, Augustin has the look of a veteran point guard who is familiar with pressure situations. He plays very hard and fast and has shown a great deal of defensive effort, although his statistics don’t necessarily prove it. Augustin rarely gets into arguments with referees and seems to maintain positive body language, which is incredibly important on a team going through some growing pains like the Bobcats. Becoming a more vocal and expressive floor leader should be one of Augustin’s priorities throughout this season. As his role in the Bobcats’ game plan increases, so too must his leadership ability.
Overall, the Bobcats should be pleased with Augustin’s first few months of NBA action. Many experts questioned their decision to pass on Brook Lopez, but Augustin’s play has quieted some of the doubters. Although he will probably never be an all-star caliber point guard, his development into a reliable NBA starter will be critical to the future success of the Bobcats’ franchise.
[Read Full Article]
Las Vegas Summer League Day Five
July 16, 2008
The rookie guard finished the game without an assist, but still played very well overall and kept the Bobcats in the game until the very end. A very creative offensive player, he scored a number of different ways today. The rookie has already mastered the pump-fake, and used it a number of times to throw the defender off-balance before drawing contact and the resulting free throw attempts. On the drive, he finishes surprisingly well against big men despite his lack of size, and can gain free throw attempts by making very difficult finishes. He looks to have a well developed mid-range game as well, which is a very important aspect for an undersized guard in the NBA these days. On the defensive end, he used his lateral quickness and strength quite well against C.J. Watson, but must work on forcing the driving guard into the help defender. Augustin also finished the game without an assist, but still ran the team fairly effectively. He will likely be a score-first type of player in the NBA, but has a bright future with the Bobcats.
[Read Full Article]
Las Vegas Summer League Day Two
July 13, 2008
Augustin didn’t have an amazing showing, but he showed a lot of very nice tools. He showcased his ability to run the pick and roll, tallying both of his assists on great passes in traffic coming off of screens. The range on his jump shot extends past the NBA three-point line, and he looked comfortable knocking it down from deep in catch and shoot situations. Augustin looked good handling pressure, and two turnovers for a rookie running a team in the Summer League is not bad at all. He initiated the offense quickly, and looked pretty comfortable overall. While he didn’t light the world on fire, Augustin had a very nice pro debut.
[Read Full Article]
Interviews: Kevin Love, D.J. Augustin, Anthony Randolph
June 2, 2008
Reporter: How did you know it was time to enter the draft?
D.J. Augustin: I just felt like I was ready mentally and physically. I had a great college experience, we won a lot of games and I think I developed into a pretty good point guard. I think I’m ready for the next level.
[Read Full Article]
Blogging through Championship Week (Part Four)
March 15, 2008
Had a strong game to lead Texas past Oklahoma State in a tough game, scoring 24 points on 11 shot attempts, though only dishing out 3 assists. One of Augustin’s most impressive skills is the ability to pull up off the dribble from three-point range, something he does so smoothly and with such ease. When he gets a screen to come around or when his defender gives him space, he’s very good at pulling up in rhythm and nailing a three, something he did multiple times in this game. While Augustin didn’t get credited with many assists, he looked very good in the drive-and-dish game, showing good vision and decision-making in the lane, and also pushed the ball well in transition, something you like to see from a point guard. On the downside, when Texas’ offense struggles to get points off execution, Augustin’s response can often be to force a tough shot on his own, such as pulling up for a contested three-pointer, which isn’t the ideal decision you want your point guard making. Also, while Augustin does show a tendency to overdribble at times, he’s also shown the ability to play off the ball late in the season, doing so in this game by getting open for spot-up shots by moving through the defense. Augustin played extremely aggressive defense in the early going as well, playing up on his individual matchup and pressuring hard in the trap Texas was employing, and while his intensity level didn’t remain that high for the entire game, he still played solid. Continued strong play through the postseason will be important for Augustin’s stock, as there are quite a few point guards capable of being drafted in the top half of the first round that he’ll be fighting for position with.
[Read Full Article]
NCAA Weekly Performers, 12/12/2007 -- Part One
December 12, 2007
D.J. Augustin finished last season with a very poor performance in Texas’ second round elimination game against USC in the NCAA tournament, but it clearly has had no lingering effect on the promising sophomore. Augustin has returned to Texas as the Longhorns’ new focal point, leading them to an early #4 ranking in the polls, without Kevin Durant to help him.
Augustin’s numbers are up across the board, most notably in the scoring columns, where he’s scoring 4.6 more points per game, shooting 10% higher from the field, and 5% higher from behind the arc. Usually when a player is forced to take on a larger scoring burden for his team, his shooting percentages will go down, as he’s likely taking more tough shots, which makes Augustin’s improvements across the board even more impressive. He’s showing a killer scoring mentality that wasn’t consistently seen last season, when he could easily defer to Kevin Durant for that.
The most noticeable stride in Augustin’s scoring game has to be his mid-range game, where he’s showing off a more consistent and versatile repertoire, making him a threat to score from anywhere on the floor at any time. He’s taken a page out of Steve Nash’s playbook with a fadeaway 10-foot jumper heading towards the baseline, and has made more effective use of a floater in the lane. He gets separation for these moves easily, using a low dribble with both hands, effective crossovers, and a good ability to change speed and directions frequently.
Augustin is undergoing somewhat of an adjustment expanding his offensive role, as he does take some questionable shots at times, specifically from the mid-range, but those are things that he should improve on with time, as he shows a very high basketball IQ. The fact that Augustin is managing to shoot 55% even while taking some of these questionable shots is a huge testament to his outstanding ability to score the ball effectively in many different ways.
The rest of Augustin’s scoring game still looks as good as ever, as he’s using his craftiness in combination with high screens to consistently take his man off the dribble, after which he does a good job accelerating through creases in the defense to get to the basket. He’s been as good as ever from behind the arc as well, knocking down shots with his quick release, either spotting up or nonchalantly pulling up off his own dribble when his defender foolishly gives him the space to do so.
In terms of his point guard game, Augustin also looks as good as ever running his team’s offense and managing the tempo, dishing out assists every which way, whether it be feeding the post, pushing the ball in transition, drive-and-dishing, or just finding open shooters on the perimeter. He gets the tendency to hold on to the ball at times, but it’s often due to lack of movement from his teammates, while he waits for something to develop. Augustin’s looked really good in transition thus far, keeping his head up and making accurate long passes to get easy baskets for his teammates. He’s also looked very good adjusting with the ball in mid-air in the halfcourt, being able to find an open man if he gets caught in a tough position.
If Augustin can keep up his current production, he should be all but a lock for the first round in the draft this year, with the lottery definitely not out of the picture. If he can maintain his 7.0 assists per game average, he’ll out-produce what Chris Paul, Raymond Felton, Deron Williams, and Mike Conley put up in their draft years, though he’ll need to bring his turnovers down a bit to be mentioned with them in A:T ratio. Augustin may not quite be on the Deron Williams or Chris Paul level as a prospect, but no one should be surprised if Augustin becomes a good starting NBA point guard not far down the road. He has a very complete game with a nice balance of scoring and passing, with the only thing really holding him back being his size, which is somewhere between 5’11 and 6’0, though his strong build somewhat compensates for that, and he wouldn’t be the first 6’0 point guard starting in the league.
[Read Full Article]
Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12 (Part One: #1-#5)
October 8, 2007
Though much of the focus in Austin last season was aimed at Kevin Durant, point guard D.J. Augustin forced scouts to take notice of his game, particularly in the second half of the season. Passing up an opportunity at the first round, the guard from Louisiana opted to return to the Longhorns for a sophomore campaign where he will be placed in the spotlight with Durant now in the NBA.
The explosive playmaker lacks the ideal height for a lead guard in the NBA, but does possess a very solid frame and top tier quickness. On offense, he usually plays a step ahead of the defense thanks to a quick first step and excellent ball-handling skills. Augustin combines the ability to finish very impressively over taller defenders, with the vision to find the highest percentage basket when passing on the drive. In the half court last season, he received a number of high picks and isolation looks because of his ability to exploit the defense so effectively off the dribble. He already shows an excellent understanding of running the pick and roll, which will please NBA head coaches that watch him on film.
Augustin also possesses a very effective perimeter shot, with a good number of his looks coming off the dribble. Last season, he was the only point guard in the country to shoot above 40% from the three point line and have a 2 to 1 assist to turnover ratio, an impressive feat for a freshman on a team filled with underclassman. His shooting percentage looks more impressive when you factor in the degree of difficulty on some of the shots he attempted. Augustin lacks the ideal elevation you’d like to see from a small guard, though he is helped by a quick release and a very consistent stroke.
The transition game was another standout area for Augustin last season. After a shot attempt, he always places himself in the right spot for the outlet pass, and his aforementioned physical attributes make him a nightmare to stop on a fast break. Augustin picks up on his teammates’ tendencies in the up-tempo game, and a number of his assists come as a result.
Earlier in his freshman year, Augustin received some criticism on his tendency to dominate the ball at times, but his control of the offense improved drastically over the course of the year. The sophomore guard plays a very controlled game, making the most of his team’s possessions. In terms of NBA upside, size will always be a question raised about Augustin. His build should help in this area, but many of today’s bigger NBA point guards enjoy posting up sub-six foot guards. Shot selection must be another area of focus for Augustin this season. With more of a feature role, NBA teams will want to see not fall into the pattern of playing for numbers rather than putting his team in the best position to win.
The pressure will be on Augustin to lead Texas back to the NCAA tournament this season. He will play with plenty of talent around him, but many of his teammates will lack experience, and it will be his first time in college playing without the Kevin Durant lifeline. With another efficient season in Austin, the first round seems like a very real possibility for Augustin in the 2008 draft, with the potential to move into the lottery by exceeding expectations.
[Read Full Article]
adidas Nations Basketball Experience Notebook (Day 3+4), Part One
August 8, 2007
Fellow Big 12 guard DJ Augustin also had a pretty nice showing, and it must be noted that most of the NBA scouts we spoke to prefer him over Darren Collison as an NBA prospect at this point, although they did admit that it’s clearly a matter of taste. Augustin is a no-nonsense type scoring point guard who makes quick decisions with the ball in his hands and has no hesitation putting the ball on the floor and using his deceptive quickness to get to the rack. He has excellent ball-handling skills and really knows how to change gears to get to where he needs on the floor. He’s the type of player who always knows where he is on the floor and therefore does a very good job finding teammates off the dribble, particularly in transition. He didn’t finish particularly well around the basket (his lack of height hurts him here), but that might be an aberration based off what we’ve seen in the past. He’s also probably a better shooter than he was able to show here. At times he’s a bit wild with the ball, but another year of playing the point full time for Texas should give him a great deal of experience going into next year’s draft.
[Read Full Article]
NCAA Tournament: Stock Watch (round of 32, Sunday)--Stock Down/Neutral
March 19, 2007
The NCAA tournament isn’t the best time to have the worst game of your college career, but unfortunately for Texas, that’s exactly what happened to D.J. Augustin today. He had a miserable outing against a group of bigger, stronger and hungrier guards than he’s matched up with all season, and consequently never got his game or his team going. USC made it a point to not give him an inch of breathing room all game long, and Augustin responded with awful shot selection and some extremely shaky ball-handling that resulted in a number of foolish turnovers.
We could go into great detail about the decisions he took today with the ball in his hands, but we’d rather just chalk it off to the inexperience of a freshman and wait to see how he bounces back next season. It’s pretty clear that the last game of the terrific season he had should postpone any thoughts he might have had of declaring for the draft this year, as he still obviously has a long ways to go.
[Read Full Article]
NCAA Weekly Performers-- 3/8/2007, Part One
March 8, 2007
With all the hysteria surrounding Kevin Durant, the fact that D.J. Augustin has managed to conjure up any sort of hype at all is a testament to his game. The freshman point guard was also a McDonald's All-American, but his impact has exceeded even the loftiest of expectations. Augustin has clearly saved the best for last, scoring 25 points and dishing out 7 assists and spearheading Texas' upset win over a Texas A&M squad known for its defense. Augustin then sliced up Kansas for 19 points and 13 assists. In the two games he committed just 5 turnovers, shot 50% from the floor and 44% from beyond the arc, while getting to the line 14 times. Kevin Durant will be responsible for any postseason success the Longhorns have, but it is Augustin's scintillating play that has taken Texas from bubble team to Big XII title contender in the last month.
Augustin's ascent to elite status at the NCAA has already taken place. He is one of the top five point guards in the country, now averaging 15 ppg, 6.8 apg and 2.0 spg, while shooting 48% both from field and beyond the arc. Augustin is also coincidentally seeing his stock rise rapidly in terms of his professional future.
Augustin is remarkably well-rounded for such a young prospect, but the aspect of his game that immediately sticks out is how he plays the game under control. His fantastic 2/1 Ast/TO ratio doesn't tell the entire story here, as Augustin plays at very high speeds - his explosiveness, quick hands and court vision allow him to weave in and out of traffic at will- and gets the most out of his ball-handling ability while usually managing to keep himself out of turnover situations.
Augustin isn't the most creative passer in the open court or on the perimeter, but has made impressive strides in his ability to control an offense. At the beginning of the season he tended to dominate the ball and look to drive instead of setting up his teammates, but Texas' offense is now running like a well-oiled machine. This is in large part thanks to Augustin's willingness to focus on setting up his teammates.
While he may not thread the needle the way that some pass-first point guards do, Augustin has mastered the art of the penetrate and kick. With Texas' small lineup and defenses' attention elsewhere, he has done a great job of identifying and capitalizing on the resulting lanes to the basket. It’s hard to put a value on his ability to make defenses pay for hounding Durant at every turn. There aren't many guards that can stay in front of Augustin defensively, and if the help defense doesn't react immediately, you can put the two points on the board. Augustin makes up for his lack of height with a full bag of tricks for getting his shot off over taller defenders, often appearing to force dribble penetration but rarely putting up a low-percentage shot.
Add in a lethal outside shot, and it isn't hard to get the picture in regards to the dilemma coaches have in attempting to contain DJ Augustin. His 5'11 height somewhat limits his upside at the next level, but he has the quickness and skill set to make up for it. He doesn't quite display the athleticism of a Terrell Brandon, but probably belongs in that mold for play style comparisons. Augustin can probably add a bit more strength/explosiveness with some time in the weight room, but one really has to stretch to find any sort of hole in his game, beyond his shortcomings defensively.
DJ Augustin has the look of a future first rounder, but it isn't clear how soon that will be. He has passed all but a couple of point guards at the NCAA level, and will continue to get his share of the spotlight as long as Durant is around. It isn't unfeasible to think of Augustin as a first rounder this season, but he could improve his stock even more by returning for a sophomore season. He already announced that he will be back in Austin next season, but eventually, Texas fans will have to face the inevitability of D.J. Augustin's early departure.
[Read Full Article]