Notes: One of the most hyped high school players ever. Got his first national cover when he was in eighth grade. It hasn't hurt that he's the cousin of Knicks point guard Stephon Marbury. Has been so-so in the high school All-Star games. Had 11 assists at the McDonalds game, but took just two shots. Was held to 1-10 shooting at the Nike Hoop Summit by Roko Leni Ukic. Has declared for the draft and hired NBA agent Andy Miller, ending his college eligibility.
Upside: Great talent. A big-time scorer who is relentless getting to the basket. Despite his 30 ppg scoring average he does have the skills to be a real point guard in the league. He's got great floor vision and his play making skills border on the amazing. He's an average athlete.
Downside: Telfair went to great lengths to work on the two biggest knocks on his game -- his strength and his jump shot. Both improved dramatically this season. Telfair hit the weight room and put on noticeable bulk. He'll never have the strong build of Marbury, but he's much better than he was last year. His other weakness, the jump shot, is also getting much better. He's much more consistent this year, especially when he isn't taking threes. Still needs work on the long ball and will have to adjust to not being the best player on the floor in either college or the NBA. His "do-it-all" approach won't fly at the next level.
Insider Projection: He has the talent. I think there are no questions left about that. What scouts are fretting about are his size and his maturity. Those are the two big reasons why Livingston is on top of this list and Bassy is here. Lottery picks are rarely used on players under 6-feet, even great players with tons of college experience. It would be unprecedented for an undersized high school point guard to get that type of commitment from a team in the lottery. While there's still an outside chance he could go in the lottery, more likely he'll end up in the 20s somewhere.