SF/PF – 6’7, 230lbs – Born 19th December 1991
Coming out of college, although he had scored 11.2 points per game as a senior, Huestis had yet to establish what kind of offensive player he was. Sometimes he played in the post, sometimes he spotted up from the perimeter, yet in neither case did he stand out. Instead, Huestis was a defence -first player, a rebounder and a shot blocker, who scored through cuts, put-backs and the like as much as he did through any designed plays. Not much was run specifically for Huestis as, with his limited handle, merely average shooting and college basketball’s refusal to run stuff for rolling screeners for some reason, it was not easy to know how to do so. Struggling to finish through contact around the basket, Huestis needed a role.
As a pro, Huestis has sought to establish himself as a perimeter shooter. All this has really done for him, though, is show that he isn’t one.
Huestis fell out of the NBA last season because the guaranteed money ran out after the Oklahoma City Thunder declined his fourth-year team option. Immediately after doing so, they then gave him over a thousand minutes, as opposed to the mere 96 he managed over his first two years combined. The Thunder at the time were desperately looking for a wing defender who could also space the floor. Huestis, however, didn’t, shooting only 28.7% from three on a high volume of attempts. He needed a bounce-back season this year to re-establish his NBA credentials; instead, though, he again shot poorly in the low-30% range that is usual for him. The 38.5% he shot with the Blue in the 2016/17 season is clearly anomalous compared with the rest of his career.
If it were not, then Huestis would be back on the radar. His defensive reads combine with his athleticism and length to make him an active and versatile defensive forward, the kind of multipositional defensive presence the NBA craves. But to be a net negative at the G-League level – which is what he was this year – is not going to cut it. He needs a bounce-back year, again.
– 20th June, 2019
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