Evaluating Ziaire Williams, Oscar Da Silva, and Herb Jones

December 1st, 2020

By Alan Lu

Recently, Ziaire Williams and Stanford squared off yesterday against Alabama at the Maui Invitational.  Williams is currently projected to be a top 5 pick for the 2021 draft, and so there was a lot of hype and anticipation to see how well he would play in this game.  He ended up playing well, and he especially excelled as a shooter, scorer, and rebounder to help his team get a lopsided victory over Alabama.  The other players on his team also played well, but prospects on Alabama’s team mostly put forth disappointing performances.  Here are my thoughts on how Williams and the others fared, as well as how their games may stack up as prospects for the NBA.

Stanford’s freshman forward, Ziaire Williams played very well, as the sharpshooting forward made 3 threes, scored 19 points, and also collected 8 rebounds in his team’s double-digit win over Alabama.
(Photo:
Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Stanford’s 6-8 freshman forward, Ziaire Williams did a great job of knocking down jumpers, as he excelled as a sharpshooter and scorer on the floor.  He made a slew of deep threes from well beyond the arc, and he especially did a good job of making outside shots off the catch.  He showed off a solid mid-range game, and he would knock down smooth, pull-up jumpers in that range.

He also showed a decent ability to score off the dribble as well as in transition.  Williams managed to dribble to the paint, as he used a spin move to score on a powerful jump hook in traffic.  Also, he ran the floor and was able to drive up the court to score on a quick layup on the break.  However, sometimes he would leave layups short when looking to take the ball to the hoop, and he seemed to have a bit more trouble scoring when taking shots from closer range.

He did show adequate playmaking skills, but Williams was also quite turnover prone in this game.  For the positives, he played well when he let the game come to him and when he played patiently, and he showed a knack for throwing solid interior passes to set scoring chances for his teammates.  However, he would sometimes tend not to get enough steam on his passes, which would lead his passes from to getting deflected and intercepted on occasion.  He also would sometimes look to do too much off the dribble in the half court at times.  He had some trouble handling the ball in traffic, and he also lost his balance and fell to lose the ball another time. Williams did a very good job of rebounding the basketball.  He was especially active at crashing the defensive glass to get his team boards, and he also was able to bring the ball up once after getting a defensive board.

He also played decent defense.  Williams is an athletic, active defender that moves his feet well, and he would look to aggressively contest shots in games.  He showed the ability to contest shots off of drives and jumpers to force some misses, and he also would get his hands on passes to get steals and deflections.  Though he did tend to bite on ball fakes, he showed impressive recovery speed to quickly contest shots afterwards.  However, sometimes he had some trouble defending drives, as he was called for a reach-in foul once, and other times he wasn’t quite able to cut off penetration on drives, as opponents were able to score a couple of tough shots on him.

In general, Ziaire Williams had a solid showing in his team’s win over Alabama, and he really excelled as a shooter and scorer when he was on the floor.  He was able to get any shot he wanted for a good portion of the game, and he is a versatile player that also can develop into being an elite defender.  He did commit plenty of turnovers early, but he was really able to find his groove on offense, and his strong ability to make shots combined with his potential to be a complete player at the NBA level makes him a very good candidate to in the top 5 for the 2021 draft.

Stanford’s senior foward, Oscar Da Silva had a good all-around game, as he helped lead his team to defeat Alabama in the Maui Invitational.
(Photo:
Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Stanford’s senior forward, Oscar da Silva played well in his team’s win over Alabama.  He is a mobile, skilled big man that showed off versatile scoring skills, and he also passed and defended well when he was on the court. Da Silva showed a solid ability to score in the post.  He can use quick spin moves to score on dunks and layups, though sometimes he would miss shots due to overtly trying to force the issue.  He also excelled at scoring on off-ball motion plays, as he would score on cuts and rolls to the rim.  Da Silva also generally did a good job of scoring on put backs to provide second chance points for his team.

He also was able to make a spot-up three off the catch to show his shooting range from beyond the arc.  However, he struggled more to score off of drives to the hoop, and he seemed to struggled more when he would start his dribble moves from further out to try to score.

He also displayed decent playmaking skills.  Da Silva is a good passer that consistently would find the open man, and he threw solid interior passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates.  He can throw good passes off the dribble, and he would consistently find cutters to get them prime opportunities to score the basketball.  However, he would sometimes struggle to create his own shot at times, as he ended up committing a couple of charging fouls.  Another time, he tried to drive the ball into traffic, but he got tied up, which led him to commit a turnover that time.

Da Silva also did a decent job of rebounding the basketball, and he was able to leap up to get multiple boards on both ends of the floor.  He also played solid defense.  He excelled as an interior defender, as he would block shots in the paint to get stops for his team, and he also would get his hands on passes to help his team get deflections.  However, sometimes he would commit fouls on drives, and he ended up fouling out of this game.

Overall, Oscar Da Silva played very well, and he played a solid all-around game to help his team get a double-digit victory.  He is a skilled big man that can make solid plays on both ends of the floor, and he is a second round prospect that could end up being a solid rotation player in the NBA.

Alabama’s senior forward, Herb Jones started off playing very well in the first half, but he cooled off in the second half.  Overall, he put forth a rather uneven performance, as he provided a promising first half start, but then was plagued with turnovers and foul trouble in the second half.

Jones is a very athletic combo forward that excelled at scoring off of cuts, and he also did a decent job of scoring on aggressive drives to the hoop.  He tended to favor going to his left, but Jones has a solid first step that allows him to score on straight-line drives.  However, sometimes he would go in too wildly, which would lead to misses around the basket. He also showed the potential to develop an outside shot.  Jones was able to make a pull-up mid-range jumper from the baseline, but he then missed a mid-range jumper another time.

However, he was quite turnover prone in this game.  For the positives, Jones is an unselfish player that can find teammates on the move, and he can pass off the dribble and out of the post to set up scores for his teammates.  However, he can tend to play too recklessly, especially when he tries to make plays off the dribble.  Sometimes he would over-dribble into traffic, which would lead him to commit charging fouls or to lose the basketball.  Other times, he would throw hasty passes that would either sail out of bounds or get intercepted by his defenders.

Jones did an adequate job of rebounding the basketball, and he would tend to push the ball up the court off of defensive boards.  He also played decent defense in this game.  Jones was able to block a long two-point shot, and he also drew a charge when defending a drive due to good positioning.  Plus, he also managed to deflect a pass another time.  However, sometimes he would be prone to fouling opponents around the basket due to over-aggressiveness.

Overall, Herb Jones is a very athletic, energetic combo forward that for years has shown promise to excel at the collegiate level, but he’s pretty much been virtually the same player all throughout his collegiate career.  He shows a knack for attacking the basket to score the basketball, but he still hasn’t improved his jump shot, and while he shows promise as a defender, he can tend to be undisciplined and foul prone.  He hasn’t really improved as a playmaker, as he is still too prone to committing reckless turnovers on offense.  It’s uncertain if Jones can reach his full potential at the collegiate level as he is already a senior, but there’s a chance that he could perhaps be a better NBA player than a collegiate player.  That may be unlikely though, as he has a long way to go as a prospect for the NBA, but he may be a similar player to former Orlando Magic forward, DeQuan Jones in the NBA.

Alabama’s sophomore point guard, Jahvon Quinerly had a solid showing, and he played better in this game than he ever did in his tenure at Villanova.  He showed off versatile scoring skills, and he is an agile playmaker that showed that he can ably create his own shot to score the basketball.

Quinerly showed a knack for scoring on strong, crafty drives to the hoop, he also scored on a put back, and he also made a deep three from well beyond the arc.  He did miss on two other three-point attempts, but it’s encouraging that he has shown a semblance of being able to knock down outside shots from beyond the arc.

While he didn’t look to pass the ball much, eh was able to throw some passes off the dribble set up scoring chances for his teammates, but he also was a bit turnover prone in this game.  Defensively, he wasn’t too noticeable, but he tended to commit fouls on that side of the floor.

Overall, Jahvon Quinerly excelled as a scorer in his team’s loss to Stanford, and he could be a player to watch this season.  If he can continue to play well, he could end up being a second round pick in the 2021 draft.

Alabama’s senior swingman, John Petty was a mid to late second round prospect for the 2020 draft, but he has since withdrawn to return to Alabama for his senior season. However, the sharpshooting guard has not shot the ball nearly as well this season so far, and he only scored 7 points in his team’s loss to Stanford.
(Photo:
Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Alabama’s senior swingman, John Petty did not play very well, as he struggled to make shots in his team’s loss to Stanford.  He only made one of four three-point attempts from beyond the arc, but he did make a corner three off the catch.  He wasn’t as effective at making shots off the catch in this game as he was last season, and he also threw up an unsightly airball after using a quick crossover to generate a pull-up three look from beyond the arc.

He did do a good job of scoring on put backs, and he also managed to score on a quick drive to the hoop.  However, he had his shot blocked on a drive another time, as he can sometimes miss shots due to rushing.  While he did draw a free throw on a put back another time, Petty missed his lone free throw attempt, and his inability to consistently make free throws throughout his collegiate career has been troubling considering that his primary strength as a draft prospect is that he is a sharpshooter that can shoot the basketball.

He also displayed decent playmaking skills.  Petty did a good job of throwing interior passes, and he can throw some solid passes off the dribble.  He also excelled at finding teammates on the move, and he can find cutters to set up scoring opportunities for his teammates.

Plus, Petty did a good job of rebounding the basketball, and he was active at crashing the glass to haul in boards on both ends of the floor.  He also played satisfactory defense in this game.   Petty was able to block a three-point attempt towards the end of the first half, and he also poked a ball away to nearly get a steal another time.  However, he can sometimes be too aggressive at times, which can lead him to commit some fouls.

Overall, Petty did not play well in this game, as he scored just 7 points on 7 shots, he did not make threes at a high rate, and he did not make any free throws despite getting to the foul line in this game.  He did play better in the non-shooting or scoring related categories, but that he’s been a rather inconsistent shooter over the years may not bode well for his draft stock.  His inability to make shots was disappointing, and he will need to shoot the ball much better to bolster his chances to get drafted and to succeed in the NBA.

Stanford’s 6-6 junior swingman, Bryce Wills had a very good game in his team’s blowout win over Alabama.  He is a very athletic player that threw down a series of high-flying, powerful dunks as he can do so in transition, and he also threw one down off of a backdoor cut.  He also excelled at driving to the hoop to score the basketball, and he showed some shooting skills by being able to make a spot-up three off the catch. He also defended very well, and in this game, Wills managed to block a shot ferociously off of a drive, and he also got his hands on a pass to get a steal.  He also successfully drew a charge to get a stop for his team. 

Plus, he also rebounded the ball well when he was on the court. As a playmaker, he looked to be about average.  He can throw solid interior passes, and he was able to find a cutter to get one assist.  However, he had a tendency to dribble around for too long, as he was a bit of a ball stopper on offense at times.  He also was sometimes inaccurate with his passes, and he also committed a few ball-handling turnovers.

Overall, Wills is a very athletic, energetic swingman that showed off very good scoring and defensive skills in this game, and he may be one of the more underrated prospects for the NBA draft.  He could be a player to keep an eye on, and if he keeps playing well, he could swiftly ascend up draft boards later on this season.

Alabama’s 6-10 senior big man, Jordan Bruner played fairly well in his team’s loss to Stanford.  He didn’t take many shots, but he was able to score in a variety of ways.  Bruner made an open three on the break, and he also managed to score on a roll to the rim while getting an extra free throw.  He also did a decent job of getting to the hoop off the dribble, and he was able to draw free throws on a strong move to the basket.

He also displayed adequate playmaking skills, and he is an unselfish player that can find teammates on the move.  Bruner was able to chip in to get several boards, though he didn’t get many rebounds overall in this game.  He also played satisfactory defense in this game.  He was able to get his hands on a pass to get a steal, and he also rotated to block a shot off of a drive due to possessing solid leaping, timing, and recovery speed to do so.  However, he also was called for committing a foul when defending in the post due to over-aggressiveness.

Overall, Bruner is an athletic, physical big man that possesses versatile scoring skills, and he was quite productive at Yale before transferring over to Alabama.  He could be a borderline second round candidate for the upcoming draft, and if he plays well this season, he could end up getting an invite to the Portsmouth Invitational in 2021.

Stanford’s 6-3 point guard, Daejon Davis played fairly well in his team’s win over Alabama.  He showed a solid ability to score on aggressive drives to the hoop, and he also excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  Plus, he also was able to make a three-point shot.  He occasionally would miss shots around the basket, as he didn’t always play under control, but he generally did a good job of making shots in this game.

Davis displayed adequate playmaking skills.  He is an unselfish player that would look to find the open man to set up scores for his teammates.  However, he would sometimes be prone to committing careless ball-handling turnovers, and he also telegraphed a pass that got intercepted once.

He also did a decent job of rebounding and defending in this game, and he would jump on balls to get boards and he also intercepted a pass to get a steal.  Overall, Davis is an athletic, skilled playmaker that can quickly get into the lane to score the basketball, and if he plays well this season, he could end up being a second round pick in the 2021 draft.

Alabama’s 6-6 freshman swingman, Darius Miles Jr. played in mop-up duty, but he showed promise to be a rotation player for them in the limited minutes he played in this game.  He made a corner three early on, and he also defended well.  He ripped a ball away and dove for it on the ground to get a steal, and he also blocked a shot off of a drive to himself to also get the rebound.  Plus, he also managed to get his hand on a pass to nearly force another turnover. 

On the downside though, he then struggled to score off the dribble or in the paint, and he also missed on a step back three late in this game.  Overall, Miles is a fairly athletic, high-motor player that could project to be a 3 and D player at the NBA level. Though he is nowhere near as athletic as his dad was and he will need to find a way to get more playing time, he could be a prospect to keep tabs on in the future due to his ability to shoot and defend on the court.

Alabama’s freshman swingman Josh Primo did not play very well in his team’s loss to Stanford.  He did not score a single point, and he even missed the two free throws when he was at the foul line.  He missed a quick deep three early on, but Primo didn’t take another three-point shot after that.  He missed on a drive in transition despite using a eurostep move.  Though he did manage to draw free throws after using a pump fake off of a drive, Primo was held scoreless in this game, and he also did not take nearly enough shots on offense.

He did display adequate playmaking skills.  Primo is an unselfish player that will look to find the open man, and he can get the ball to shooters to set up scores for them.  He also can find cutters, as he can pass off the dribble and find teammates on the move.  However, sometimes Primo would get sped up and play too fast, which would lead him to throw inaccurate passes and he also would over-dribble into traffic, causing him to commit turnovers.

He was able to chase down a couple of boards to get a pair of defensive rebounds for his team.  Defensively, Primo looked to be above average on that side of the ball.  He did a good job of poking balls away from opposing ball handlers to get steals, and he also contested a shot in the post to force a miss.  However, he can be too aggressive when defending drives, which led him to commit some fouls.

Overall, Josh Primo is an athletic, energetic swingman that was hyped up by some people to be a potential first round pick for the 2021 draft, and he is one of the youngest players in college basketball, but he did not look to be a prospect that should be anywhere close to that range based on his poor performance in this game.  There are still a lot of basketball games left in this season, but he didn’t help himself by going scoreless in his team’s lopsided loss to Stanford.  Primo will need to improve his jump shot and be more aggressive on offense, but he might need to spend more time in college basketball than draft analysts may have initially thought.

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