For our next NBA Draft feature, we’re headed to the ACC and one of the best shooting guards in the country – Florida State’s Devin Vassell. The Seminoles have one of the deepest teams in the nation, so although Vassell’s 12.7 points per game may not pop off the page, it’s actually extremely impressive on a team that runs nine or ten men deep.
Shooting at a 49% clip, Vassell is a versatile and efficient player. He shot 41.5% from three-point range on the season, and he also collected 5.1 boards per contest. Considering he only played a little over 28 minutes per game, Vassell’s numbers are impressive, and the lack of sheer volume has him sitting lower on the draft boards than his worth. Vassell is likely a mid-first round pick, and if you can pick this guy up after the first ten picks, you’ll be getting exceptional slot value.
Undoubtedly, Vassell’s best game this season was his season-high 27-point performance against Virginia Tech. Vassell earned his points in his usual efficient manner, but he was particularly on point against the Hokies. Firing on all cylinders, the 6’6 sophomore connected on all seven of his attempts from beyond the arc in leading the Seminoles to a big road victory.
Vassell also posted a double-double (23 points, 11 rebounds) in an overtime victory versus Miami, and he was Florida State’s main source of offense in a defensive slog against Virginia – the Georgia product torched the Cavaliers for 18 points, five rebounds, and three assists in a 54-50 victory.
Vassell’s role in Florida State’s defensive system, as well as his quietly efficient scoring clip, could help him carve out a role at the next level. His biggest weaknesses according to scouts are scoring volume and assists, but again, much of the volume issues are due to the Florida State system not being conducive to gaudy statistics. His defense and steady consistent play should make him a valuable asset in this year’s draft. He may not be putting up 25 a night, but Vassell has a spot in the NBA, so it’s just a matter of which team takes advantage of his talent.
Prediction: Round 1, Pick 15, Orlando Magic
Obviously, with the draft lottery having not happened yet, the pick order is still a bit of a mystery, so this is based off the records at the time of the sports shutdown. The Magic figure to fall into that mid-first round range that Vassell should go in, and Orlando could use Vassell as an intriguing complement to the offensively talented Evan Fournier. Plus, there’s the added benefit of keeping the FSU guard in-state and comfortable, which can be a big factor in success at the professional level.