The 2017 NBA Draft is fast approaching and the Portland Trail Blazers possess three first round picks (15, 20, 26), as you know if you’ve been following our draft profiles. Today we take a look at another prospect and how he could benefit the Blazers, continuing the series by checking out 19-year-old big man Harry Giles.
- Height: 6’11”
- Weight: 230
- Wingspan: 7’4.25”
- Shoots: Right
- Position: C
- Last Team: Duke
- Age: 19
- Projected draft range: 17-25
- PPG: 3.9 | Per 40: 13.6
- RPG: 3.8 | Per 40: 13.3
- APG: 0.3 | Per 40: 1.2
- BLK: 0.7 | Per 40: 2.3
- STL: 0.3 | Per 40: 1.2
Giles is an interior workhorse. He has a motor that never quits and he will be the first guy to dive on a loose ball. He is also a very good rebounder, averaging 5.5 offensive rebounds per 40 minutes, and is clever defensively. He has great footwork fronting the post, can hedge ball screens, and even occasionally switch. Giles has good hands, too, not only in the sense of coordination, but he also owns the biggest hands in the draft, measured at a width of 10.75”. Coming out of high school, he was one of the top-2 players in the nation.
Giles has all of the tools of a good NBA player, but injuries have set him back in a major way. Two ACL tears and an MCL tear before graduating high school puts him in a scary place for NBA GMs. Giles seemed to lack the explosion and confidence at Duke that he had in his high school days, but the question remains, is it coming back? Or even worse, will his career be defined by injuries? Giles is not much of a ball handler and has a pretty weak jump shot, so offensively he may just be a rebounder, finisher, and hustle guy.
Giles missed his senior year of high school and the first 11 games of the 2016-17 season after his second torn ACL. The rust and late start never gave Giles much of a chance to succeed much in college. And he did not. Giles played fewer than 12 minutes per game and never gained any footing or confidence. It’s almost hard to look at who he was at Duke and make accurate comparisons to the NBA player he could or will be.
Giles would have been near the top of the NBA draft board last year had he been allowed to enter and had been healthy. After one unsuccessful year in college, he probably should have returned to raise is stock. One might wonder if the risk of another injury could be scaring him, too. That being said, if he heals up and becomes the player that he was originally expected to be, he could be a great pick up. He probably tops out as a more accomplished Tristan Thompson. But, as stated, it’s tough to judge him. If some team does finds itself unhappy with the prospects in front of them, maybe a shot in the dark like Giles is the way to go.
The first thought is that the Blazers need restraining orders on any big men with injury concerns. Especially knee problems. That is also my second and third thought. However, with the futures of Ed Davis and Noah Vonleh in flux, Giles might be able to come in and fill in for them in a more productive way. He could play at the same time with Nurkic and would play well with the talented Blazers back court. His defense would be a huge help. The draft is probably too deep to nab Giles at 15, but if the Blazers keep their remaining two picks, he is someone to consider at 20 or 26.
Do you want Giles in a Trail Blazers jersey next season? Which player would you like us to analyze next? Tell us in the comments below.