Josh Green is an intriguing draft prospect for the Utah Jazz in this year’s draft. Some have said that he is athletic enough to be drafted as high as the middle of the first round. While others have said that his inconsistent shooting, and lack of one specific elite skill, will hold him back and cause him to slide down towards the end of the first round.
Even with inconsistent shooting he is projected to be a solid role player. He may have just enough athletic ability and skill to take a flyer on and hope that he develops in the way that the Jazz would like to see. If he does develop a consistent jump shot, then he would be the kind of invaluable role player that every team is looking for to add a boost to their bench.
At 6’6” with a wingspan of 6’10” he has the body and the length to be a great defender, which he showed at Arizona by leading the team in steals last year. He also showed the ability to be versatile by playing at the 1, 2 or 3 position at different times. He can aptly guard all three of those positions as well, although was prone to foul trouble at Arizona which may be exacerbated at the pro level. He has shown great composure on the court with relatively few turnovers last year. Green has also displayed the desire to improve by improving his free throw percentage from 59% to 78% between his last year at school and the end of his freshman year at Arizona, which speaks to a good work ethic.
As far as how he would fit on the Jazz specifically, the Jazz are in dire need of good bench production. They especially need players that can handle the ball. There is plenty of reason to hope that coach Snyder will be able to help Green develop a competent jump shot or else maximize his other talents. He is from Australia so it might make his transition to the NBA a little bit easier to have a rangy ball handler like Joe Ingles on the team to mentor him along the way.
The risk is that he ends up being another Dante Exum like project that never fully develops a jump shot and can’t stay on the court even though he may be a great defender. But if he is still around when the Jazz pick at #23 he might be worth the risk.