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2011 NBA Draft Center Rankings

Steve Shoup

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1. Enes Kanter, Turkey, 6’11”:

Kanter is the best big man in this draft, and should be gone in the top-5 picks. He has good size and great leaping ability. He is a terror on the boards, and can absorb contact and still make a shot. Kanter is both a quality ball handler and a can score from range. While he isn’t a pure center he will be able to defend most centers around the league. Kanter reminds me a lot of a cross between Greg Monroe and Amare Stoudemire.

2. Jonas Valanciunas, Lithuania, 6’10”:

Valanciunas is an impressive prospect, who has the potential to be a quality center. He’s a good rebounder and a decent overall defender. He runs the floor well and could fit in on a full court offense. He dominates around the basket, but has limited range. His lack of bulk will likely hold him back somewhat and I think he will need a year or two before he could think about starting. He reminds me a bit of Marc Gasol crossed with Chris Andersen.

3. Jordan Williams, Maryland, 6’10”:

Williams is a promising center prospect, who has added some bulk since his year ended. Williams has a developing offensive game that is pretty dependent on shots within 10 feet. While he lacks range, he is very tough player around the basket and can take contact (though not really a free throw shooter). His size and rebounding ability should allow him to be at least a solid rotational player, and could allow him to develop into a starter down the line. He reminds me some of Nene Hilario, but I am guessing he has closer to a Kurt Thomas type career.

4. Lucas Nogueira, Brazil, 6’11”:

Nogueira has a lot of potential and rebounding ability, but he doesn’t really have a very refined game. The potential is definitely there for him to be a starter down the line.

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