School: Michigan State
Height/Weight: 6’0, 185 lbs
Cassius Winston has proved to be an elite floor general and the key to success for Tom Izzo and the Michigan State Spartans.
Where Cassius stands out from the crowd is his playmaking ability. His name has been thrown around with the likes of former elite Michigan State point guards Scott Skiles and Magic Johnson and rightfully so given his talent.
He makes difficult passes seem easy and rarely turns over the ball. He’s a player that a coach will always trust with the ball no matter the situation.
Scoring wise, Winston is a crafty finisher that uses angles well to finish on both sides around the basket. As with most small guards, Cassius uses a variety of floaters and deceptive speed changing moves to get decent looks around the rim.
The last thing we absolutely need to discuss is his three point shooting which has been phenomenal his past two seasons. While the 3 point shooting has taken a dip (to be fair he was at a historical 49.7% last year) he has kept that percentage above 40% while increasing his shot attempts per game.
He’s got a pure stroke and should have no problem adjusting to the 3 point line.
Cassius Winston has a decent frame for college basketball but will largely be undersized as a pro prospect. His limitations physically are most visible on the defensive end where he isn’t such a productive player.
In watching his defense, Winson could easily be a more active and pesky on-ball defender and should look to be much more disruptive to garner any true NBA Draft value. Being a smaller defender, he is going to have to make up for his lack of size with early, energetic defense.
At times, Cassius’s greatest asset is also his downfall. He can be prone to making high-risk plays which have lead to turnovers at inopportune times. I am sure the Michigan State coaching staff wants him to continue to push the envelope and be creative with his game. However, as he develops mentally I look for Winston to learn when to reign things in and use his wizardry more situationally. He definitely has made improvements since his first couple years at Michigan State, but there’s still work to be done.
Cassius Winston is the key holding floor general for the Michigan State Spartans. Winston should be considered one of the best playmakers in the nation and has proven it in his junior year. As of right now, I see Winston as a 4 year player for the Spartans. Physically, he is still not yet ready for the NBA and will likely take the full time for his body and mind to develop. This will only continue to allow his game to mature and showcase his talent for NBA scouts as he makes a run at the 2020 draft.
If he does decide to declare this year, I don’t see him being drafted unless he has a fantastic workout with a team and they take a change on him late in the 2nd. More realistically though, he would go undrafted and have to prove himself in Summer League and then the G League to prove that he deserves a spot on an NBA team.