Height/Weight: 6’9, 205 lbs.
Louis King is a unique wing talent that has clear potential to be successful at the next level. As a freshman, he already has an NBA-ready body with a strong frame. King’s biggest asset is his athleticism. He is strong and well-built, however, he is an explosive run and jump athlete as well. King has the ability to run the floor in transition well and soar in for alley oops and some quite impressive jams.
King also possesses excellent body control and is able to finish through contact at the rim. This athleticism will be useful at the next level because it will allow King to contribute on both sides of the ball.
As a young wing player, King has proven that he can score in a variety of ways including 3-pointers, step back jump shots, fade-aways, floaters and athletic finishes at the rim. He is excellent off the dribble and is able to create enough space to get his shot off with his above average handles for his size.
King’s shooting form is smooth and he is starting to develop more and more confidence and consistency from behind the arc. He uses his excellent shooting form to his advantage at the free throw line, where he is an above average shooter. On offense, he always has his hands ready to catch and shoot and he understands spacing and where to set up on the perimeter. King is a constant scoring threat from the wing and his scoring versatility coupled with his athleticism will allow him to take advantage of defenders.
King is also able to use his athletic build to his advantage on defense as well, as he is a solid defender. He constantly communicates with his teammates on defense, calling out switches on screens. His length and quickness are tools that he uses well on the perimeter by closing out and contesting shots, playing passing lanes and using active hands to swipe at the ball. King is also able to use his strength to keep up when playing against bigger opponents. He has the versatility to guard multiple positions at the next level.
One of King’s weaknesses on offense is his consistency shooting from behind the 3 point line. He has shown rapid improvement throughout his freshman season, however, in order for him to be more of a complete offensive weapon he will need to be able to knock down threes consistently. This is important because it will open up more scoring opportunities for him and will allow for better spacing for his team on offense. King also needs to work on his post moves and operating with his back to the basket so he can take advantage of mismatches on smaller or weaker defenders.
At times King relies too much on his athletic abilities by predominately looking for a way to score at the rim. He needs to learn when to pull up for a mid-range jump shot or understand when to look for a better shot. His shot selection needs some work, however this could be a product of trying to overcompensate for the loss of projected lottery pick Bol Bol.
King is an average rebounder but can definitely improve in that department. With his size and athleticism he should be hitting the glass hard and fighting for offensive and defensive rebounds. It will be important for King to rebound at a more efficient rate so that he can impact a game in multiple ways at the next level. His lack of size attributes to his small number of boards. Teams would like to see him put on 15-20 more pounds.
Louis King has pretty solid handles as mentioned before, but at times he can get loose with the ball. He has shown the ability to keep it on a string, but too often we’ll see that string snap because he’s just doing too much.
King has been showing rapid improvement in developing his overall game throughout his freshman season at Oregon, however he is still a raw talent who could benefit from another year or two in college. He is an explosive athlete at the college level and has the skills necessary to play and contribute in the NBA. If he decides to test the NBA waters after this season then I believe he would be projected as a late first or early second round pick. King is a versatile wing player that plays well on both sides of the ball and has a significant amount of potential because he can play and guard multiple positions at the next level. He is an offensive weapon that will be a scoring threat from everywhere on the court once he develops a more consistent 3-point shot, a smarter shot selection, and learns how to operate more efficiently out of the post.
King has a strong frame but can also improve by adding 10 to 15 pounds of muscle to keep up with stronger NBA wings and forwards. While I would love to see him refine his game by staying another year in Eugene, I’d be surprised if he doesn’t declare for the NBA Draft. He’s got too much potential not to.