Hawks Draft Targets: Devin Vassell

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Continuing with our draft coverage for the Atlanta Hawks is Florida State’s, Devin Vassell. Vassell is a 6’7 wing with a 6’10 wingspan who is a respectable 3-point shooter and has excellent defensive potential as a 3-and-D wing in the NBA.

As someone who is skeptical regarding the future of Cam Reddish and De’Andre Hunter, the Hawks need a wing who can knock down shots and play excellent on-ball defense. Vassell would fill this need. Let’s take a look at what he has to offer.

Strengths

  • Defense, Defense, and More Defense: Vassell has the highest defensive potential in this draft… period. He can step into any NBA rotation and make it better. He is an elite on-ball defender, he is quick on rotations, and his long arms make him a pest in passing lanes. This is the impact Vassell can have as a defensive stopper.
  • Fluid Athlete: Vassell is a pretty explosive athlete who plays above the rim. When you look around the league, it is only getting more and more athletic. Vassell has enough athleticism to compete with many of the young wings, like Jayson Tatum, Brandon Ingram, and Jimmy Butler. His body needs to fill out, but I can see him having a Trevor Ariza type impact in the NBA.
  • Spot-Up Shooting: Vassell has the potential to be a consistent three-point shooter in the NBA. He was a 41.5% 3-point shooter in his sophomore year and had an effective field goal percentage of 56.5%. He also shot 74% from the free-throw line. 

Weaknesses

  • Thin Frame: Vassell is only 195 pounds and needs to fill out as his body and game mature. He has a similar build to the Pelicans Brandon Ingram, who has adjusted to the NBA’s physicality and was an all-star this year. Vassell might struggle offensively and defensively against stronger, bigger opponents, especially early in his career.
  • Offensive Versatility: Vassell has work to do in many areas of his game offensively. He sometimes struggled finishing at the rim when he can’t jump over the defenders and needs to become comfortable finishing and making passes with his weak hand.

Team Fit

Vassell can come to Atlanta and earn minutes right away because he is an athletic defender who can hit shots. 

A lineup of Trae Young, Kevin Huerter, Devin Vassell, John Collins, and Clint Capela has plenty of defensive potential. The Hawks ranked 28th in Adjusted Defensive Rating last season, and Vassell will improve the Hawks defensive versatility with his size, athleticism, and length.

He is currently ranked 7th on Kevin O’ Connor’s Big Board and is an intriguing option for the Hawks at #6.

Photo: Logan Stanford/Icon Sportswire

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