Bennedict Maturin scouting report: strengths and weaknesses of 2022 NBA draft prospects and player comparison

Almost every year in the NBA draft, there is a prospect that lights up and starts shooting at draft boards in the weeks leading up to draft day.

One of the names that have created some serious buzz in 2022 is Bennedict Maturin, the Canadian quarterback who became a household name in the NCAA tournament by putting on a show to lead Arizona to the Sweet 16.

At 6’6″ and weighing 195 pounds with a claimed wingspan of 6’9″, Maturin has the size, height, strength and speed to hold his own against any perimeter player in the NBA. Oh, and he’s only 19 years old.

Here’s more on why Maturin might have heard his name earlier than expected on draft day.

MAIN PROJECTS OUTLOOK: Banchero | Holmgren | Smith Jr.

Benedict Mathurin Scouting Report: Strengths

What sets Maturin apart as a prospect in the NBA is his ability to take down jumpers in many different ways, more than comfortably throwing off the rebound, but also willing to play off the ball and break away from screens and shields to free himself for open eyes.

Maturin’s jump shot is clean and confident. He has a fast and high shot, and the defenders do not interfere with his shot. He’s always looking for an opportunity to stop on a dime and pull himself up for the jumper – sometimes almost to the point of a mistake, drawing contesting looks – but he’s a tough shooter.

He has the “it” factor, he wants the ball in his hands at the big moments, which we saw in this pull-up after dribbling when his team’s season was on the line in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Mathurin’s knockout shot plays into his hands, as he has already advanced in finishing attacks. From there, he doesn’t shy away from basket contact and uses his elite athleticism and body control to finish among the trees. It will go straight for anyone standing between it and the ring, but it has also designed a secure float so rim defenders can’t guess.

As a playmaker, Maturin is able to simply read the ball, always ready to take what the defense gives him. If too much focus is placed on his ability to score, he will show patience, allowing the game to develop before finding the best way to feed an open teammate.

And how smoothly he can be a scorer with the ball in his hands, I’m most impressed with his work without the ball.

Mathurin is incredibly active with high motor skills, always moving or cutting, which makes him a headache for defending an opponent. Because he is strong, athletic and physically fit when attacking the basket, he has no problem with passes that lead to hard shots.

We saw it when he threw a tournament dunk against TCU. The finish rightfully attracted attention, but it all started with his movement without the ball, anticipation and acute awareness.

However, this is more than just one piece. He always finds free places outside the ball. Whether timely backdoor for easy bucket or run away from the screens to free the jumper with catching and shootingMaturin without the ball gives as much trouble as with him.

Despite playing as a combo guard, I see Maturin thriving at the next level as more of a shooting guard than a point guard. His ability to create without the ball makes it easier to build around him, and also raises his floor if he doesn’t hit, as option #1.

Benedict Mathurin Scouting Report: Weaknesses

Maturin has what it takes to be a blocking perimeter defender, but he doesn’t always dial. He tends to relax too much when coming out of his defensive stance (even if he is the main defender in certain actions such as pick and roll). It has more to do with effort than actual inability to defend, which can be seen as a plus or minus.

When Maturin goes head-to-head with one of the NBA’s top-scoring defensemen, he’ll have no choice but to go all out, defending at a high level. He can be annoying and annoying with the ball and take some risks off the ball, but he has a long way to go when it comes to defending endless pick-and-rolls at the next level.

Offensively, he is improving as a passer, but he still needs to hone his game as he relies more on his first step and strength to get past defenders than on a fast jet dribbler to stir up his opponent.

I have little doubt that Mathurin’s all-round offensive play is broadcast and developed in the NBA, while his defense may be what defines his ceiling as a professional.

Benedict Maturin NBA Player Comparison

In the NBA draft, Maturin told me that he watches Devin Booker and Zach LaVine a lot on offense and Mikal Bridges and Jrue Holiday on defense. If he gets close to that combination, we’ll look back five years and wonder why Maturin wasn’t in serious contention for the No. 1 pick overall.

I think Mathurin has shades of LaVine and Celtics guard Jaylen Brown in his game. LaVine blossomed as an elite scorer and became the crown jewel of the free agent class this summer. Meanwhile, Brown boasts of his two-way play as either the second or first pick in the NBA Finals.

There is a long history of the best player in the draft coming out of the top five. While he’s probably riskier than some of the players who planned to go above him in the draft, Maturin exudes stellar potential, and there’s a world where he’s growing into the best player in this draft.

Can I predict it or bet it will happen? No.

Would I be surprised if this happened? No.

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