Height/Weight: 6’5, 195 lbs.
Ryan Cline was overshadowed by his teammate Carsen Edwards who had left the NCAA tournament with all-conference honors and scoring barrages rarely seen in the tournament. During these impressive performances by Edwards, Cline hit some of the biggest shots for Purdue in the tournament. Especially in the upset win against Tennessee.
Cline had seven three pointers against the Volunteers and they were not ready for the best catch-and-shoot player on the team to not miss. Cline might be one of the best catch-and-shoot players in the country. He has one of the most unorthodox releases in the country, but is a very fundamentally sound player and has a deadly pump fake that gets defenders to rise constantly, due to his knockdown shooting ability.
He has a quick release that retreats the ball far behind his head before he releases so a lot of defenders struggle to get their hands on it. Once he is in a rhythm, it’ll be hard for him to come out of it.
He is an amazing shooter, but with him being such a fundamentally sound player, when he needs to be he is able to find the open man. He may even surprise you with a flashy pass you did not know he was capable of passing as well.
Cline could find success at the next level with even more space available. He is one of the best in the country when moving without the ball to get open. It reminds you of the underrated speed and IQ that JJ Redick possesses.
If Cline even wants to do well in Summer league, he must become a more adequate defender. Cline was a late bloomer for sure, but now that he has put it together, he wants to build on it. Hopefully it’s not too late if he can improve his defense and maybe his creativity with the ball in his hand.
He is an average athlete so most defenders play him to shoot, which can at times throw his game off and he becomes less of a factor in the game if guarded correctly. Another troubling sign is the former 80%+ free throw shooter declined to 70% this season and without that consistency from the line, the struggles will come in bundles if his shot is not falling.
He never averaged more than three rebounds in his career for the Boilermakers and he must be able to crash and get dirty in the paint if he wants to survive in the association as well. He had the ball in his hands more this year and his turnover percentage barely moved. He is a smart player, however he can be too smart on the court at times as well, overthinking the play and instead of taking the easy shots, he may force the pass.
Ryan Cline is a knockdown shooter that travels on the floor well without the ball in his hands. He must become an improving defender and rebounder to succeed at the next level. I think Cline is worthy of a Summer League spot, but it’s very unlikely he is drafted. He will be sought out for after the draft I believe by teams that are very systematic that can benefit from a shooter like Cline. The Clippers, Warriors, Spurs, and Bucks all come to mind.