So far most of the Prospect Breakdowns have been geared towards the 10th pick in the draft, but let’s take a look at a potential selection for the Sixers later in the draft, Shake Milton, the junior point guard from SMU.
Milton makes an interesting case for the Sixers. Shake Milton not only has the coolest name amongst the projected draft picks, also registered the longest wingspan amongst guards entering the draft at an impressive 7’0.75 measurement while he stands at 6’6. While Milton is by no means freakishly athletic, he makes up for it a smooth 3 point shooting stroke, a willingness to attack the basket off the dribble, and the physical tools to become an NBA defender.
In his senior year at SMU, Milton averaged 18/4/4 while shooting 44% overall from the field and 43.4% from distance, however his season was cut short due to a right wrist injury. In 8 of the 22 game Milton played this season, he scored 20+ points including a season high 33 points on 11-13 shooting against then ranked #7 Wichita State that propelled SMU past the Shockers for a huge upset win. On the season, Milton averaged 1.34 points per possession in spot up shooting as a junior (98th percentile in D1). He has very good mechanics and his wingspan gives him the ability to shoot over other guards defending him.
The problem with Milton falls in his lack of athleticism. He is an oversized point guard standing at 6’6 with a 7+ foot wingspan but, he primarily plays below the rim. His lack of explosiveness makes it difficult to get around or blow by defenders and forces him to pass mid drive. He makes the most of it was he has a unique ability to get the ball up to rim through the trees and somehow finish layups that have no business going in.
With some work in an NBA facility, he could beef up and improve his vertical leap and become a more explosive athlete, which would greatly benefit him as he is already a gifted scorer.
As of now, he has some Frank Ntilikina vibes to him, but he could eventually become Shaun Livingston who already has a 3 point shot.
On the defensive side of the ball, Milton has the potential to be a nightmare to matchup against in the NBA. He uses his length to disrupt passing lanes and make it tough for ball handlers to operate and he is able to close out with ease because of his wingspan. However, his lack of athleticism catches up to him again as he is unable to stay with offenders once they are by him. At times he falls asleep or is caught ball watching and allows backdoor cuts or is late on a rotation. One of the most common words used in “draft talk” is the word “raw”, which is exactly what Shake Milton is. He is long and wirey but has the physical tools to transform in to a capable NBA defender. One thing Brett Brown is very good at is getting players to buy in on the defensive end, which is something that Milton needs in order to be successful at the next level.
This is where things get a little hairy for the Sixers. As things are positioned before the draft and free agency, the Sixers are guard heavy with Ben Simmons, JJ Redick, TJ McConell, Markelle Fultz, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, Furkan Korkmaz and Jerryd Bayless, The rotation will more than likely consist of backcourt pairings of Simmons/Redick and McConnell/Fultz. That leaves little room for Milton to get run and if the Sixers take a wing player with the 10th selection, it may be more in their interest to take a back up big man for Joel Embiid at the 26th spot.
There are some mock drafts that have Shake Milton getting selected in the 2nd round, and some that have him as early as 21st. The Sixers have a total of four 2nd round picks in the 2018 draft, and if Shake Milton is available, he is an intriguing player for the Sixers to look at.