Jan 17, 2013; Champaign, IL, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini guard Brandon Paul (3) brings the ball down court during the second half against the Northwestern Wildcats at Assembly Hall. Northwestern defeated Illinois 68-54. Mandatory Credit: Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois Basketball Roundtable: Did Brandon Paul Help his Draft Stock at NBA Combine?

The staff of Writing Illini gives their opinions about Brandon Paul’s performance at the 2013 NBA Combine. The guys discuss is Paul helped his draft stock and where he could be selected in this June’s NBA Draft.

Feb 07, 2013; Champaign, IL, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini guard Brandon Paul (3) lays the ball in during the first half against the Indiana Hoosiers at Assembly Hall. Mandatory Credit: Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

Ricky: I believe Brandon Paul helped his draft stock at the NBA Combine, but I do not believe he helped it enough to be a first rounder. Yes, he recorded one of the best max verts, but he still needs to show that he can be more consistent from game to game (which one cannot see from the combine).

It is true that Paul’s agent is talking to the Chicago Bulls, but why would they take Paul if they can draft Michigan’s Time Hardaway Jr. in the first round? I am a huge Bulls fan and I think Hardaway Jr. is a better fit for the Bulls, but I wouldn’t be upset if they drafted Paul in Round #2.

Austin: Paul put on a show at the combine, having one of the best max verts at the combine and showing good speed and agility. Paul absolutely helped his draft stock, as many analysists have him moving up the board into a possible first rounder after the combine.

With a weaker talent pool in this year’s draft, BP3 could see himself staying in Illinois, as his agent has been in contact with the Chicago Bulls. Many think the Bulls could take a flyer on Paul, as his style of play, a la hard defense and a good shot, fits Thibs system in Chicago.

Ryan: I don’t believe that Brandon Paul helped his draft stock with anything he did at the Combine, and most mock drafts seem to agree. In some, he held his ground around 47th overall, but in others he dropped out completely. I still think he gets taken in the middle to late 2nd round by a team looking for some extra bench scoring.

As I’ve hit on before, his biggest point of emphasis as a player from now until retirement should be consistency. In particular, consistency in making shots, as he needs to be better than the 32% from 3 that he registered as a senior at Illinois. Because he is undersized by NBA standards as a 2 guard, and isn’t a pure point guard, Paul needs to be in the upper 30 percent / low 40 percent range if he expects to secure long term employment at the NBA level. For reference, the NBA regular season 3 point percentage leader of players who qualified this season was Jose Calderon at 46%.

What do you think, Illini Nation? Where will Brandon Paul go in the 2013 NBA Draft?

The Writing Illini staff includes lead editor Ricky Widmer along with staff writers, Austin Jabs and Ryan Kraemer.

Follow Ricky on Twitter @RickyWidmer.

Follow Austin on Twitter @AustinJabs85.

Follow Ryan on Twitter @RPKraemer.

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Tags: Basketball Brandon Paul Illinois Fighting Illini NBA Combine NBA Draft

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