Question: What do you think of James Young’s play and has he helped his NBA stock?
Isaacson: “There’s no denying Young’s athleticism, and he’s a good shooter when makes sure to get set, but I don’t think as highly of him as many do. It’s nothing against Young, but the reality is there are plenty of James Young-type players on NBA benches and the D-League is full of them, so I wouldn’t see a real need to take him too high. I do think Young has impressed teams with his ability to defend well when he tries to and along with Randle, Young’s effort seems to be the most consistent of the Kentucky rotation. Young’s biggest problem is he spends too much time trying to be a player he’s not, or at least not yet. Focus on being the consistent shooter the team needs and don’t worry about creating scoring opportunities that just aren’t there.”
Question: Have teams found weaknesses in Julius Randle’s play and could he still be a top five pick? Where do you see him needing the most work to be ready for the NBA?
Isaacson: “I think I addressed early in the season that teams were going to figure out Randle’s go-to moves and his weak right hand, and teams also saw the same thing. Now some teams just don’t have the strength to stop Randle, even knowing what he is going to do, but even so, I have seen Randle try to do different things, like going to his right and looking for teammates off the dribble. He’s still not very good at it, but you really shouldn’t expect him to be. The fact that he is not shying away from working on his expanding his game is a very good thing. I see no reason why Randle couldn’t be a Top 5 pick, and if he wasn’t, it’s likely because a team had a different kind of player in mind and not a knock on Randle’s game. The biggest areas he still needs to work on, along with what I mentioned already, are his defense and being able to knock down mid-range jumpers. Randle has the raw tools to be a good defender, he’s just not very good at it yet and it’s really about getting him to focus on the basics of playing defense. The shooting will be vital down the road as he’s going to be up against many more players who are as strong as him and he needs to add the versatility to his game.”