April 2, 2011
Robert Vaden (54th pick, 2009)
- Vaden was drafted as a shooter, and by my troth, he still is one. He returned from Italy to play for the Tulsa 66ers this year, and has hit 40% of his shots from three point range on route to 10.4 points in 27.9 minutes per game. The question about Vaden's game was always everything else; could he learn how to dribble, how to consistently get to the basket, how to finish, how to be an exceptional defender at a position he's slightly too small for, and how he could impact the game in ways other than via the mid-range and long-range jumpshots. Those questions remain.
Chances of making the NBA expressed as an arbitrary percentage: 3%
November 15, 2010
7th: - Rio Grande Valley Vipers - Robert Vaden, UAB
You can pretty much take Chris Lofton's scouting report above, and apply it to Robert Vaden. Vaden, too, is a shooting specialist, who demonstrated this when he averaged 16.9 points per game for Italian Lega Due team Aget Imola last season, shooting 40% from three point range on almost 8 three point attempts per game. The 6'5 Vaden is bigger than Lofton, offers slightly more defensively, yet does even less within the paint and is equally underwhelming athletically.
Vaden was drafted 54th overall by the Oklahoma City Thunder (via the Charlotte Bobcats), yet was not allocated to the Thunder's self-owned D-League affiliate, the Tulsa 66ers. Nevertheless, the 66ers traded point guard Mustafa Shakur to RGV in exchange for this pick, bringing Vaden back into their stable. (Shakur had been allocated to Tulsa as a returning player, a unison further enhanced by his midseason stint with the Thunder last season.)
July 5, 2010
Vaden was an ambitious draft choice last year, drafted because of his one NBA calibre skill; his jumpshot. In his first professional season, with Aget Imola in Italy's SerieB, Vaden proved he still has that one NBA calibre skill, averaging 16.9 points per game on 40.0% three point shooting.
Unfortunately, he still has only one NBA calibre skill.
May 18, 2010
- Robert Vaden
After being drafted by the Bobcats and traded to the Thunder, Vaden's professional career began in the Italian second division with Aget Imola. He averaged 16.9 points in 35.7 minutes per game there, shooting more threes than twos and hitting them at 40%. Vaden formed an explosive backcourt with former BYU guard Trent Whiting, who averaged 22.1 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. Whiting his spent eight of the nine seasons of his professional career in Lega Due, and has averaged no less than 16.6ppg in any of them. Is there not an opportunity for promotion here?
Former San Diego State forward Ryan Amoroso was also with Imola for much of the season, but he left in February. The man who Jimmy Dykes once described as being "in there to foul" did a lot of it, averaging 4.1 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.7 fouls in 16 games.