Danny Granger Draft Capsule
VITALS: 6-8, 225, New Mexico
OVERVIEW: A two-time first-team All-Mountain West Conference forward, Granger led the Lobos in scoring (18.8), rebounding (8.9), steals (2.1) and blocks (2.0) this season. The versatile performer shot 52 percent from the floor and 43 percent from the arc. A transfer from Bradley, Granger averaged 19.1 points and 8.9 rebounds in his two years at New Mexico and finished six points shy of 1,000. Granger was a Missouri Valley Conference All-Freshman performer in 2002-03, averaging 11 points and seven rebounds, and was leading the school in scoring (19.2) and rebounding (7.9) before transferring to New Mexico after 14 games of his sophomore season.
LIKELY DRAFT POSITION: Most people expect to see Granger picked either right before or right after Joey Graham. Graham is the more athletic of the two, but Granger has a more polished all-around game and is a better defender. Granger could go as high as No. 7 to Toronto or as low as No. 14 to Minnesota.
COMPARATIVE UPSIDE: Michael Finley
COMPARATIVE DOWNSIDE: Matt Harpring
ROLE PROJECTION: Starting small forward.
POSITIVES: Granger was asked to do it all by a modestly talented New Mexico team, and he responded by producing a versatile effort every night. Playing primarily at power forward, he often was in the playmaker’s role, hitting cutters produced by double-teams against him. He was a big-time rebounder and should bring some of that toughness to the NBA, even if he is at small forward more often. He is an improving perimeter shooter, although he scored most of his points bringing the ball to the basket in college.
SHORTCOMINGS: Granger is a student of the game, and as such he knows that players chosen high in the draft are expected by fans to be big scorers. Granger can score, but that has never been what he’s all about. NBA scouts appreciate all the little things he does well, but less knowledgeable fans may blame him if the team he joins struggles and needs points. He is the type of player that grows on you, and he will grow on fans if his new team gives him a chance to show the breadth of his skills.