• On draft night, the Knicks caught me by surprise when they took Stanford forward Landry Fields with the 39th pick in the draft. Fields was in our database ranked as the 116th-best player in the draft. He’s the first American player ever to be drafted that wasn’t in our Top 100 since we started doing this in 2003.
Clearly, I blew it.
Fields has earned a starting position for the Knicks and through three games is posting a very impressive 19.30 PER — better than both Blake Griffin and Cousins.
How did I (and a number of NBA teams) miss so badly? Our Top 100 is based on the consensus of a number NBA scouts and executives. Fields wasn’t mentioned by any of them. He was so off the radar that he wasn’t one of the top 60 players invited by the NBA to participate in the Chicago predraft camp. The NBA selects participants based off of rankings by all 30 NBA teams.
But that’s not an excuse. One NBA scout, along with a source close to the Stanford team, called me and told me I was sleeping on Fields. I pulled down some tape from Synergy and frankly, just didn’t see it. Had I thought about him specifically for Mike D’Antoni’s wide-open system — maybe. But the truth is I thought he was a good European prospect, not an NBA one.
He’s proven me and the rest of the league very wrong in the early going. From all accounts he’s a very nice kid who’s working really hard. Here’s hoping he keeps it up over the course of his career.
Good look by KlapCity on this one
To read all of Chad Ford’s notes from today click here.
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