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NBA Draft 2015: Utah Jazz select Olivier Hanlan from Boston College with 42nd pick of the draft

With the #42 pick of the 2015 NBA Draft, the Utah Jazz think they have their guy.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The Utah Jazz were at it again, in the middle of the second round; and have selected Olivier Hanlan from Boston College. While the lotto pick (Trey Lyles -- story here) may be a little safe, this one adds some potential sizzle to the Jazz. The Canadian combo guard can hit from deep, shooting nearly six times a game in his final season while maintaining an NCAA career mark of 36.1%. I think this is pretty important pick for the Jazz because it fits in well with what the team needs. The evolution of the NBA game requires a point guard who can pressure the defense with scoring, and the evolution of our Jazz offense is based around wing action. As a combo guard Hanlan can give the Jazz a player that fits both their individual style, while keeping pace with the changes in the league. Of course, he comes to a crowded backcourt, but the college Junior knows when to pick his spots.

Player Information:

  • 6'4.25" Height / 186 Weight (4.3 Body Fat %) / 22.3 Age
  • 1.04 to 1.00 wingspan to height ratio, not a freak with his size, but still on the positive side of things. 34.0" vertical, 3.25 second sprint doesn't remind anyone of an Olympic athlete, or Bryce Cotton, but he's still able to get up
  • Finished his Junior year with a 19.5 / 4.2 / 4.2 / 1.3 line, as the main man at an ACC program
  • While he was born in Alymer, Quebec (the high school he first went to is about 22 minutes from where I went to high school, across provincial lines, according to Google Maps), he played the rest of his prep career in New Hampshire, and then stayed in the North East at Boston College. He is not on twitter, but his Dad and Brother are.

How does he fit with the Jazz:

Hanlan, a second rounder, does not have a guaranteed contract. He would be pretty cheap though, as the #42 pick it's almost economical for the team to keep him around. Last year's #42, the Houston Rockets player Nick Johnson, only made $507,336. Last year as a free agent Bryce Cotton made much less (only $92,514, a massive bargain only because that is his salary from a few 10 days and so forth, not an entire year's worth of work), but retaining him as a second year player would mean having to dish out $845,059 to retain his services. Chris Johnson, a 2/3, would cost the Jazz even more, $981,348, next year. Hanlan, a 2/1, could make both of those guys expendable with his ability to play both on and off the ball. Though, as a 2nd rounder he still has to impress the team enough to be offered an invite to training camp in October, and then still make the team. Of course, the financial aspect of how he fits in is secondary to what he could do on the court for this team.

It's customary to retain 3 point guards, at least. The Jazz used to do that back when roster sizes were only 12 people. The question is can Hanlan play point guard at the NBA level? I think he can, and that means Quin Snyder has another option behind starter Dante Exum. As a bench player he could be slotted into whatever backcourt position needed some fresh legs, depending on the situation. His three point shooting off the ball allows for someone like Gordon Hayward, Alec Burks, Rodney Hood, or free agent Joe Ingles to handle the ball -- which seems to be Quin Snyder's offensive plans in the first place. But with the ball in his hands he can drive, draw the defense, and either make the efficient pass, or draw a foul. As a 22 year old he's already older than some of the guys on our roster, and he'd be the rookie. But he doesn't lack experience, having logged nearly 3,500 minutes at the collegiate level, and finishing his play there with a career PER of 20.9, with a very impressive 30.1 USG% and 29.1 AST% in his last year.

He's not a star like Gordon Hayward. He's not dynamic like Alec Burks. He's not filled with potential like Dante Exum. He's not the defender that Elijah Millsap is. And he doesn't have the smooth game of Rodney Hood. But he gives Dennis Lindsey and Quin Snyder a big option on how to build this team. Filling out the bench with players who aren't horrible is an obvious way to upgrade the roster. Hanlan's three point shot is an asset, and opens up the floor for the rest of the team.

Jazz Roster / Depth Chart:

  • Point Guard: Dante Exum, Trey Burke, (Bryce Cotton), Olivier Hanlan
  • Shooting Guard: Alec Burks, Joe Ingles, (Elijah Millsap), (Chris Johnson)
  • Small Forward: Gordon Hayward, Rodney Hood
  • Power Forward: Derrick Favors, Trevor Booker, Trey Lyles, Grant Jerrett
  • Center: Rudy Gobert, (Jack Cooley)

The players with the ( ) around their names have non-guaranteed contracts, and thus can be eliminated if need arises. Need would be drafting someone who is better.

Bottom Line:

Hanlan had a consensus Mock Draft ranking of 41.40 +/- 6.06, though because of the ordinal rank he *slipped* to #45 overall. Last night he was picked right where he should have, at #42. The Jazz worked him out back on June 13th, and Basketball Insiders' Steve Kyler and SB Nation's AllThatAmar had him pegged to go to the Jazz in the most recent mock drafts. This is where Olivier needs to be. This is where he was supposed to be. And he's here now. And he's going to hit threes, and play on and off the ball while bringing his All-Around game to a place that almost as cold in the Winter as his home. (N.B. For the non-Canadians out there, the Ottawa region is much colder than the Toronto region.) And yes, I am very happy about having two Canadians on the roster.