Height: 6'5" (196 cm)
Weight: 216 lbs (98 kg)
Position: SG/SF
High School: Preparatory Charter School (Pennsylvania)
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
College: La Salle
Current Team: Penarol Montevideo
Win - Loss: 11 - 9


Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Non-BCS Conferences, Part Four

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Nov 13, 2009, 01:43 pm
Joseph Treutlein

Rodney Green is an interesting prospect who has steadily improved his production in his three seasons at La Salle. Green is listed at 6’5, which appears to be a generous listing, and he doesn’t have great length for his size either. He is a very good athlete, however, having very good vertical explosiveness and top speed, along with a good first step off the dribble.

Green plays the point guard position for the Explorers, but is hardly a conventional playmaker, spending a good deal of time off the ball and not doing much to create for others in La Salle’s team-oriented offense. Green projects as more of a shooting guard at the next level, as while he shows pretty good vision, he doesn’t try to use it very often, and his floor general instincts appear lacking. He’s also not a great ball-handler for a 1, specifically in backcourt situations such as transition or dealing with presses, where he can be nonchalant with the ball, either not protecting it well or throwing lazy passes.

Attacking off the dribble, however, is another story entirely. This is where Green excels the most, as he possesses outstanding footwork and instincts going to the hole, being able to change directions incredibly well using subtle moves such as hop steps and misdirection steps. He’s very rangy on such moves, covering large amounts of ground while changing directions on a dime, doing it all in a compact manner without wasted dribbles. His body control, balance, and ability to adjust around the basket are likewise great, as he finishes well there despite not using his left hand often. Green is just as good transitioning his dribble into pull-up jumpers, doing an excellent job of maintaining balance and getting off high-percentage shots on the move, showing very good form on his mid-range jumpers, even with a hand in his face. He will also occasionally mix in advanced moves with his pull-up jumpers, such as faking going to the basket, only to pivot into a turnaround jumper from the elbow.

While Green clearly has a very high skill level and scores the ball quite often, his efficiencies could improve some, and he is prone to rushing shots or making bad decisions, as evidenced by his 3.2 turnovers per game. His outside shot has steadily improved in his three seasons, but he is prone to letting his form get sloppy either by having his arm drift or not holding his follow through, two reasons why he shot just 35% from behind the arc. Still, his learning curve here is encouraging, and if he focuses on eliminating those few bad attempts, he could improve noticeably, as his shot is quite good in space when not rushed.

Green has a good post game for a guard, showing the same rangy moves and footwork that are seen in his dribble-drive game, but it’s doubtful this will do much for him at the next level. Green also does a pretty good job moving off the ball, but most of his scoring opportunities come out of isolations. This is part of one problem Green could face projecting to the next level, as most of his scores aren’t done in ways NBA teams would likely call upon him, as he rarely catches and shoots off curl patterns off the ball and he barely ever runs pick-and-rolls, though these are two things his skill-set definitely appears suited for.

Defensively, Green plays aggressively and makes a good impact in the passing lanes, but his man-to-man defense is spotty at times. His lateral quickness is adequate for defending shooting guards but not so for point guards, and he isn’t always in a low stance, which hurts his reaction time. These aren’t major issues at this level, but looking ahead, they could become problems. Green does do a good job helping out on the defensive glass however, where his athleticism definitely stands out.

Looking forward, Green has a lot of factors stacked against him, as he’s an undersized scoring guard who doesn’t have good length to compensate, while he plays a role in college he’d be unlikely to play in the NBA. While he has great scoring skills and instincts, it’s questionable how exactly they will translate to the next level, and teams will likely look to him to play more of a complementary role, where he’ll need to either provide contributions in more areas or become a much more reliable spot-up shooter from three. That said, he certainly has a chance to make it in the league, and could even put himself in second round discussions with good play this season, which would be aided greatly by an NCAA tournament appearance. His combination of athletic ability, scoring instincts, and the learning curve he’s shown are all things weighing in his favor.

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