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NBA Draft Combine Measurements
Why You Might Know Him
By Taylor C. Snow
Kelly Oubre may be the most physically recognizable young man on the draft board. He normally rocks a rust-colored mofro (Mohawk/afro combo), which compliments a pair of soul-piercing light brown eyes. But it’s not his physical attributes that got him here; his uncanny athleticism and 3-point consistency set him apart in the Big 12.
The first thing I notice when I watch Kelly Oubre play is his incredible length. Standing in at 6-foot-6 ¾, he possesses a 7-foot-2 ¼ wingspan that affects the game at both ends of the court. On offense, that length allows him to extend and get shots off in traffic (sometimes… more on this later). On defense, that length helps him to challenge shots, take away passing lanes and deter drives. Oubre has nearly all of the tools necessary to become a great defender. We already know he has great length, but he’s also very agile and has pretty good feet. He plays under control at the defensive end and doesn’t commit too many fouls. He doesn’t over-pursue on close-outs but does challenge shots. The two areas that I question regarding his defensive potential are his size and his effort. He’s a lanky 6-foot-6 ¾ and he’s going to need to put on a lot of weight to be able to handle the strength of NBA small forwards. From an effort perspective, Oubre isn’t a guy who’s going to stand out as someone who’s dogging it. However, he also won’t stand out as a guy who’s giving it his all. I think if he can have the type of defensive motor of someone like Marcus Smart or Avery Bradley, he really be able to make an impact in the NBA. Oubre plays with much less patience and control at the offensive end. He does not handle the ball well and does not read and react. He’ll put his head down and drive to the basket, directly into three defenders, and then throw up a wild shot. He really needs to improve his ball handling and the way he reads defenses. Currently, his ability to create his own shot is very limited. He’s a lefty and finishes almost exclusively with that hand around the basket. When he does get off a clean shot around the rim, he displays very nice touch. He has a nice little runner in his arsenal. I think this is an area where he can really excel in the NBA if he does, in fact, develop his ability to read and react. He rarely uses his athleticism to his advantage when finishing in traffic, but he does display a great second leap for putback attempts. I think his jump shot has potential. He was a respectable 3-point shooter at the collegiate level and I think that will eventually translate to NBA 3-point territory. He displayed no midrange game at the collegiate level, so that’s something I’d really want to see during a workout.
By Taylor C. Snow
Oubre was born on Dec. 9, 1995 in New Orleans, La. to Kelly and Tonya Oubre. During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, he and his father moved to Richmond, Tex., where he eventually attended George Bush High School. Oubre played three seasons for the Broncos, averaging 22.7 points per game his junior year, before transferring to Findlay College Prep, Avery Bradley’s alma mater in Henderson, Nev. During his lone season at Findlay, Oubre averaged 23 points per contest, and earned All-American honors. At the 2014 McDonald’s All-American game, he tallied the game-winning free throws for the West, to go along with 11 points, seven rebounds and three blocks in 18 minutes. This past season at Kansas, he started 27 of 36 games and was the highest scoring freshman (9.3 points per game) on the team. He was also second on the squad in rebounds (179) and steals (41). During the opening round of the Big 12 Tournament, Oubre scored a career-high 25 points and sunk 15 free throws, after making just 56 in his previous 31 games combined. He declared for the NBA Draft on April 1.