As spring turns to summer the NBA Draft will become more and more in focus. The Draft Lottery will be held later this month and even with the 15th pick, the Hawks are expected to have some quality options in what is billed a deep draft.
ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman updated his latest mock offering last week and projects Duke shooting guard Rodney Hood to the Atlanta Hawks at No. 15.
Analysis: The Hawks need a scorer on the wing to go along with point guard Jeff Teague and forwards Al Horford (when healthy) and Paul Millsap. Kyle Korver can shoot it, but Hood can be a versatile scorer.
Goodman has Hood going two picks behind Kentucky's James Young and three back of Oklahoma State's Marcus Smart who he has tumbling down to No. 12. Goodman projects P.J. Hairston, T.J. Warren, Zach Lavine and Jusuf Nurkic to be picked immediately behind Hood.
Hood averaged 16.1 points for Duke this season while shooting 46 percent from the field. DraftExpress.com's scouting report lists his offense as his biggest strength but there are questions about his defensive abilities.
Hood looks the part of a NBA wing, standing 6-8 in shoes with a lanky build and smooth and fluid (but not incredibly explosive) athleticism. He made 42% of his 3-pointers on the year and is one of the better shooters in this draft class, showing excellent mechanics and a high release point, to go along with deep range, and being capable of knocking down jumpers with his feet set or off the dribble. He hit 37 of the 85 pull-up jump-shot attempts he took on the season (43%), which ranks #1 among college prospects in our Top-100 Rankings.
Hood's biggest weakness as a NBA prospect likely revolves around his defense, as he shows questionable intensity on this end of the floor, rarely getting into an actual stance and frequently being knocked off balance and taken advantage of off the dribble due to his lack of strength. His relatively short arms don't do him any favors here, as he measured just a 6-8 wingspan on a few occasions, which is accurately reflected in his inability to generate steals (.9 per-40), blocks (.3) or rebounds (4.9), all of which rank among the worst rates in the draft at his position.
Here is a look at his scouting video from DraftExpress.com: