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2020 NBA Draft Profile: Paul Reed

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Paul Reed’s versatile skillset could capture the Trail Blazers’ attention if the DePaul forward is still available in the second round.

Xavier v DePaul Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

The Trail Blazers’ 2019-20 season is firmly in the rearview mirror and the 2020 NBA Draft is now on the horizon. As of now, the draft is scheduled for November 18. Unlike last year, the Blazers enter the process with two picks at their disposal. Portland currently owns the No. 16 pick in the first round and the No. 46 pick in the second round.

Today’s profile focuses on Paul Reed, a lanky forward out of DePaul who projects to be available in the second round.

Paul Reed

  • Height: 6’9”
  • Weight: 220
  • Wingspan: 7’2”
  • Shoots: Right
  • Position: F/C
  • Age: 21
  • Projected draft range: 39-54

2019-20 Statistics

  • PTS: 15.1 | Per 40: 19.1
  • REB: 10.7 | Per 40: 13.5
  • BLK: 2.6 | Per 40: 3.2
  • STL: 1.9 | Per 40: 2.4
  • FG%: 51.6
  • 3P%: 30.8
  • FT%: 73.8

Strengths

Paul Reed is a surprisingly crafty player on the offensive end. He’s athletic and is comfortable finishing with both hands. He’s creative in the paint, able to contort his body to finish shots with both touch and force. And while he wasn’t a lights-out shooter by any means, his decent shooting percentages indicate that he could improve.

His athleticism and long frame help him immensely on the defensive end, where he’s able to rise up and contest shots with ease. He’s a versatile defender who’s long enough to guard bigs and quick enough to keep up with wings and other perimeter players. Combine those physical attributes with his activity both on and off the ball, and you have the recipe for a player that is capable of making an impact in the NBA.

Weaknesses

Offensively, Reed is a work in progress. His shot could blossom into a strength, but as of right now his mechanics are rigid and need work. While he’s a good finisher once he’s in the paint, it’s somewhat of a question mark as to how he’ll get there. He’s mediocre ball handler and tends to force plays too often. He shows flashes of strong offense, but he needs to tighten up the handle and the decision-making if he really wants to make a consistent impact.

Reed has the length, athleticism, and activity level that you like to see out of NBA defenders, but he’s not a finished product on that end of the floor. He’s only 220 pounds and needs to put on some muscle to be truly effective against NBA-caliber bigs. Similar to his offensive game, Reed is not afraid to take risks on defense. That risky style does not always yield positive results. He often chases blocks instead of staying in position. An outcome that leads to foul trouble. That fouling problem will persist if he doesn’t bulk up and become more disciplined.

2019-20 Season

After earning the Big East Most Improved Player award the prior season, Reed came out and played even better in the 2019-20 campaign. As a team, DePaul struggled for large portions of the season; they were only .500 overall and finished 3-15 in the Big East. But Reed was stellar, leading the team in rebounds and blocks and ranking second in scoring. He was good enough this season to earn All-Big East Second Team honors.

Overall Assessment

Reed is an interesting prospect to take a flier on in the second round. He’s got good length and could be an impactful defender right away. He shows enough potential on the offensive end that you can buy into him being a competent shot-creator. He’s not perfect by any means; he’s too skinny, he has to iron out some kinks in his offensive repertoire, and he has to do a better job of avoiding foul trouble. But there’s enough there that he could surely develop into a solid role player for any team.

Overall Fit

Reed falls right into the range where the Blazers should be drafting in the second round, and he’s worth a look. His profile lands in middle ground for Neil Olshey, where he’s both someone who needs time to develop and is also someone who has some immediately-translatable skills. Realistically, Reed could guard multiple positions early in his career, a billing that fits inside the Blazers’ needs this offseason.

One thing that NBA teams love is positional flexibility, and Reed can potentially give Portland just that. He could conceivably log minutes at each frontcourt position at the next level if developed properly, and generally speaking Portland has a solid track record when it comes to developing prospects. Think of it this way: the Blazers would love to have a Jerami-Grant-type player on this team (or, you know, just Jerami Grant), and Reed can provide a portion of that production for a reduced price.