Just How Good is D’Angelo Russell?


D’Angelo Russell’s rise to stardom was a unique mixture of sudden, shocking, and unbelievable at the same time. He committed to Ohio State out of Montverde Academy (Montverde, FL) as a widely sought-after 5-Star SG.

He was seen as a sweet-shooting lefty with the ability to drive-and-dish the ball when needed. He had an innate sense to score and pass, but most thought he would take some time to adjust to the college game. Many scouts thought he had NBA potential, but almost none saw it coming to fruition year 1. The amazing thing is, he’s Become so much more than that. Instead of just showing flashes of NBA potential, he looks the part of a player that seems to be a legitimate NBA Star in the making.

Russell started off the season strong against a rather bad UMass-Lowell team, where he went off for 16 Pts, 6 ASTs, and 4 REBs. (On 7-14 Shooting in a 92-55 Victory). Yet he followed it up with arguably his worst overall collegiate game against Marquette where he put up a rather bland, yet poor stat-line of 6PTs, 4 ASTs, and 2 REBs. The bad part? He committed 7 TO’s in the process, despite OSU blowing out Marquette 74-63.

Russell went on to finish off his non-conference, leading the Buckeyes to a 11-2 record and averaging 17.6 PPG, 5.3 APG, and 4.7 RPG. He put up great numbers, but struggled against the two legitimate teams OSU played against in Louisville and North Carolina (Both losses), so many people didn’t truly take his play seriously. That is, until he stepped it up in B1G play.

In B1G play, Russell is averaging 20.5 PPG, 5.7 APG, and 7 RPG. All while in the process of leading the Buckeyes to a 8-5 start in B1G play.

Russell looks the part in terms of a player who is an absolute future NBA superstar in the making, and has even been compared to current NBA Stars in players like Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors and James Harden of the Houston Rockets.

He projects to be an easy top 5 pick in the NBA draft, and is absolutely in contention for the first overall pick.

Yet despite all of his draft projections, what is most amazing is the simple fact that he is physically carrying this Buckeye team through the gauntlet that is the Big Ten, and while the conference is down from past seasons. Russell is practically doing it by himself (And while this Buckeye team is extremely talented all around, Russell is clearly the one fully engineering it.).

Russell is a phenomenal talent and will go top 5 guaranteed (If indeed he declares following the end of the 2015 season). The ability he possesses is that of a potential superstar, and for now he truly is an NBA player playing beside College players. This is truly amazing to say the least.

Not too bad for a freshman with no draft projections prior the 2015 season, eh?


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