NBA Draft 2022: What EJ Liddell Brings to New Orleans Pelicans

John Fanta
FOX SportsCollege Basketball Writer

It was the most amazing autumn of NBA Draft night.

Even draft experts who had doubts EJ Liddell You wouldn’t have seen it coming. The Ohio The product was widely considered the choice of the first round, but he has always been New Orleans Pelican At number 41.

How amazing was this? Liddell didn’t even work in New Orleans because he and his team thought there were no shots available deep in the draft.

When asked about Liddell, one scout said, “I was very surprised that he had fallen so far.” “Maybe the team didn’t buy him as a shooter and is still worried about the lack of a real position. He’s tough, defends multiple spots and has a very high IQ. Liddell is typical. There’s no reason you can’t be a good role player. With the NBA. ”

The 6-foot 7, 245-pound forward returned to school after testing the body of water in 2021 and developed at college level, raising the score per game to 19.4 points. Liddell was 33% of the shooters from the other side of the 2021 arc, so he’s been over 37% this past season, and his mark from the field has also increased to over 49%.

Liddell, at the age of 21, may have turned off some teams, but he became stronger in the process of developing the shots and preparing for the transition to the NBA. He received feedback and made the most of it under Chris Holtmann in Columbus.

So why autumn?

This issue revolves around uncertainty about what role Liddell can play in the NBA.

EJ Liddell’s Defense Helps Ohio Survive

EJ Liddell had three blocks to keep Backeyes alive in the first half of last season’s match against Xavier.

He’s a bit tweened in terms of his size, and the idea that he’s a small ball five is there, but certain matches can be difficult for him to handle. With a wingspan of 7 feet, he was a big ten, ambitious and capable defender, able to handle a variety of matches and even turn on faster guards.

On the offensive side, there is absolutely reason to believe that Liddell can stretch the floor if he removes his sample size in Ohio. According to Kempomeroi’s assessment, Liddell was the fifth most efficient player in college basketball this past season. He became more than four in order for The Birth to develop his game and try to give them an aggressively different look, and in fact became a more aggressive weapon. He is not mistaken for a ball handler or passerby, but Pelicans have not drafted him to do those things.

Reached the postseason for the first time in four years, Phoenix Suns In the 6-game series, an important area to tackle is defense.

“I never thought EJ would be 41,” said Trajan Langdon, general manager of the Pelicans, on the night of the draft. “For us, that was a big achievement. It’s great to raise 2.5 blocks per game (this past season) at his size. He’s a physical player, a high-level competitor, and A high-level man. ”

Pelican wants to win a second steal for the second year in a row after grabbing Herb Jones Jones eventually created the All-Rookie Second Team.

“This is nothing new, as people have proved that people are wrong throughout my life,” Liddell said on the night of the draft. “I will continue to do that until the day before. I’m glad they (New Orleans) gave me a chance, and I’m grateful for giving them an opportunity.”

John Fanta is a national college basketball broadcaster and writer for FOX Sports. He covers sports in a variety of positions, from calling games on the FS1 to acting as a lead host on the BIG EAST digital network and providing commentary on the fields of the 68 media network. Follow him on Twitter @John_Fanta..

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NBA Draft 2022: What EJ Liddell Brings to New Orleans Pelicans

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