Is Victor Oladipo an NBA superstar or safety net?

June 25, 2013
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Victor Oladipo’s rise has certainly been meteoric. Twelve months ago, IU followers were wondering what his potential was as a college player. After two years in Bloomington, it wasn’t clear if the man from Maryland would ever be anything more than an ace defender.

This month, NBA general managers are trying to decide if the Indiana graduate (he earned his diploma in three years) is the No. 1 pick in Thursday’s draft.

To those who have followed Oladipo’s career closely, it all seems a little crazy. He wasn’t even considered the best player on his high school team and was overshadowed a good part of the last two years by IU teammate Cody Zeller.

Zeller is in this draft, too, but no one is talking about him as a top pick. He’s scarcely mentioned as a top five possibility. (He’s projected somewhere between No. 7 and No. 12).

“It may be a bit of a surprise, but in polling them, one constant theme I heard from NBA general managers is that Oladipo is our favorite player in the draft,” said Chad Ford, ESPN college basketball analyst.

But is Oladipo really that good? Is he a future NBA superstar? Or a safety net?

He may be both.

While some NBA executives say it’s not out of the realm of possibility that Oladipo will be selected with the overall No. 1 pick, they’re not going all-in with this bet. Ford thinks the allure of a big man will induce Cleveland to select Kentucky’s Nerlens Noel first, despite the fact that he’s battling a knee injury. Maryland center Alex Len is another big man that could go No. 1.

Still, said Ford, there’s lots to like about Oladipo. He has a 42-inch vertical leap, a 6-foot-9-inch wing span and blazing speed. While his jump shot still needs work, most agree he’s the best defender in this draft. Draft prognosticators seem to think he’ll go no lower than No. 4 to Charlotte or No. 5 to Phoenix.

“He’s [general managers'] favorite because they don’t see him failing in the NBA,” Ford said. “[Oladipo] may be the safest pick in the draft of the top six picks in the draft right now. He’s an elite athlete. He’s already going to be an elite defender on the perimeter.”

But that’s not all.

“He improved dramatically his junior season at Indiana,” Ford added. “He improved his jump shot and his ball handling. He’s such a hard worker. I think people think he’s going to get it and become an elite player at some point in his career.”

Ford isn’t the only one raving about Oladipo as the draft approaches.

Tom Penn, the former vice president of basketball operations for the Portland Trailblazers, said the more time NBA general managers spend with Oladipo, the higher his stock rises.

“He becomes your favorite player when you meet him, when you get to know him as a person,” said Penn, who also works as an ESPN analyst. “The interview process … is a huge part of this. You have to interview with these players, look them eyeball to eyeball. And this kid is the real deal.”

There's little doubt, general managers said, that Oladipo is going to max out his potential.

“So then, the question is, how high is his ceiling?” Penn said.

Penn’s next proclamation may seem even crazier than the thought of Oladipo going No. 1 in this year’s draft.

“It may very well be [his potential is] just as high as this player [Oladipo] gets compared to, and that’s Dwyane Wade,” Penn said. “That’s a bold statement. Nobody thought this about Wade back then. It’s what’s inside. You have to work your tail off. This kid is a worker. He’s got a big, big chance.”  

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this blog

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT
  1. Good Day I am Mr (Victoria Wright) from United state of America, i stayed in NEW YORK, and i have a broke up business, until i found this company email who help me to gain a loan for business,, and now i want to used this short medium to congratulate the below company for the fast and safe money they loan to me without any form of collateral, i loan 500,000USD from the company to save my business and lots more, i saw their mail on the internet, everyone always give testimony for what they did, so i quickly contacted them and they all did everything for me without stress and my money was sent to my account just 3 days later, i was surprise and i feel so glad, now i have a standard business control agent who help me, now i will advice those who need urgent loan to contact him at the bellow email:zenithfirm12@gmail.com

  2. NOTICE:This is to inform the general public that Vampires are real. My name is James Franklyn.,am an agent of vampire,am here to introduce our new world trend to you,a world of vampire where life get easier,we have made so many persons vampires and have turned them rich,you will be assured long life and prosperity,you shall be made to be very sensitive to mental alertness,stronger and also very fast,you will not be restricted to walking at night only even at the very middle of broad day light you will be made to walk.In case you are wildly oppressed by some unscrupulous persons we can still help you fight them.Your protection is assured immediately you join.Just contact the bellow email if you are interested we are here to attend to you anytime you want us. Contact the bellow email for more details. Email:vampirescreed@hotmail.com Sincerely: James Franklyn.

  3. Bravo! Someone else that is willing to speak the truth! Bravo!_____NBCSN is available in almost 2 MILLION more homes than just a few years ago, but Indycar STILL gets less total viewers than it did just a few years ago when NBC took over Versus. Attendance and ratings cratered with the end of season races (just when the title battle got "interesting" HAH!__________And now...new race in Basilia, where Miles celebrated the "rich history" of Indycar racing there. Rich history? What, 7 events in the 100 years of AOW? Yep, some history. Well, at least its an oval. It's not??? Are you kidding me??? Gosh darn road racin furriners.

  4. PURITY RAY LOAN OFFER........ Have you been denied by your banks,or are you in need of of an urgent loan to pay of your bills we are capable of giving loans @ cheaper rate to interested individuals, student, companies and members of the public in need of finance to settle bills, we do offer considerable loans which you can count on. For more information on our various types of loan,then you will have to contact PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM, to help you achieve your desire LOAN APPLICATION FORM TO BE FILLED BORROWERS INFORMATION * Full name:………………………. * SEX * ……………………………. * Country………………………….. * State:……………………………. * Land:…………………………….. * Occupation:…………………….. * phone number:…………………. * Telephone: ………………………….. * Age:………………………………. * Amount needed as loan:……… * Loan Duration:………………….. * Propose of Loan:……………….. * Annual revenue:………………… * Monthly Income:……………….. * Guarantee:………………………. * Payment: monthly or annually Email.....purityrayloanfirm@gmail.com Thank you and God bless Mr Purity Ray PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM we tend to serve you better

  5. Problem: most of the people responding to this article don't know about this service AT ALL! Why? Lack of awareness. This isn't IndyGo. This is CIRTA: might as well be the mattress company because they are asleep at the wheel - something like 3 directors over the last year? Playing with federal grant money is great! This "region" wants commuter rail service, has spent MILLIONS on Transportation studies yet can't even support a commuter bus line? This is largely for suburban riders to get to downtown - not for "service people to work in our hotels and restaurants" ! Get your head out of your backside!! These are professionals, students etc. that don't want to fight traffic, save some money on parking, gas, stress.... if CIRTA would put their federal money into widely promoting the sevive to Greenwood, Fishers & Carmel instead of finding directors and studies - this would be a successful service. Our family uses(d) it daily for the last several years - but the recent uncertainty & now unreliability due to cuts from Carmel has been a problem. Now, costs us an additional $350/month for gas & parking ( $4200/year) plus vehicle wear, service, environmental impact ... YES - this REGION needs this this type of service in order to keep growing and getting the people it needs to fill skilled positions in downtown Indianapolis. Think outside of your own car !!!

ADVERTISEMENT