Considered one of the most talented scorers in the college ranks, Michael Porter Jr. was a candidate to go first overall coming into the season but suffered a back fracture that required surgery and ended his season before it could ever really get underway.
Porter returned for Missouri’s final two games, looking understandably rusty, but certainly not mitigating concerns about his future. It has been hard to get a good look at Porter since his decorated high school career, and while NBA teams are familiar with his game, they now must assess his situation carefully before deciding whether to draft him.
The Crossover’s Front Office breaks down Porter’s strengths, weaknesses, NBA comparison and more in its in-depth scouting report.
Michael Porter Jr., F, Missouri | Freshman
Height: 6’10” | Weight: 210 | DOB: 6/29/98 (19)
Stats: 10.0 PPG, 6.7 RPG, 33% FG
• Ideal body for his skill set, with the size, length and high release to shoot over the top of defenders. Could spend time at either forward spot offensively.
• Polished, highly skilled offensive game. Fluid athlete when at 100% health. Lives off of straight drives and pull-ups. Soft shooting touch. Plays in transition.
• Will add value as a rebounder and make the occasional defensive play. First and foremost a scorer but not a one-note talent. Stands to grow into added responsibilities.
• Serious back injury at a young age creates added uncertainty surrounding his athletic profile and long-term health. Has to prove he’s right physically.
• Has never been much of a playmaker. Tends to be a ball-stopper and look for his shot. How will he adjust to playing with more talent around him?
• Not an especially committed defender. Multiply that with his back issues and it’s fair to doubt what type of consistent impact he might be able to make on that side of the ball.
• Some teams have concerns about his attitude, maturity and work ethic.
Michael Porter prepares for his NBA litmus test (August 2017)
Comparison: Harrison Barnes
Porter’s well-rounded offensive game makes him the kind of player most any team could find a way to use. If he can get back to full strength and tap into his full potential, this comparison will look underwhelming.