Is there anything Evan Mobley can’t do?
The Cleveland Cavaliers‘ 2021 rookie looked half-human, half-superhero for much of the season.
Listen, Scottie Barnes is fantastic…
The 2021 NBA Draft class is fantastic…
There is simply no way Evan Mobley wasn’t the most impactful rookie in the league this year
— Tony Pesta (@Tony_Pesta) April 23, 2022
He’s already done his best Superman impression, saving the Cavs from another year of purgatorial rebuilding.
He’s also been Cleveland’s Flash, turbo-charging and flash-forwarding the current team’s timeline.
Mobley’s also been a rich-person’s Danny Trejo; a player who, in most every instance, just makes the viewing experience better.
So what could be in store for the Rookie of the Year runner up in year two?
To continue the analogy (and end it, mercifully), the sky’s the limit.
There is greatness in Evan Mobley.
Even his teammates recognize that.
“I laugh because he hasn’t even scratched the surface yet. There’s so much for him that’s up for grabs and to make a major leap, and he’s going to be a star for a very long time. I was very impressed with how he handled himself. You talk about that quiet confidence with Evan, and again I’m super excited for him and the core unit to really make a big step this year.”
What about starting guard Darius Garland?
Here are his thoughts:
“He’s literally a unicorn. A 7-footer, 20 years old that can do everything. I’m glad to play with him. Happy to have him on my team so I don’t have to go against him.”
Evan Mobley is a future number one option on a team capable of winning the Finals.
An over six-seven, excellent ball-handling, fearlessness, defensive dynamo, and zen master.
It’s why a player like Ben Simmons would have been so incredible had he developed a shot and shred of confidence.
Mobley doesn’t operate only in the paint, like a prototypical center.
But he has the ability to play in the paint at an exceptionally high level.
Evan Mobley was the 3rd best rim protector in the NBA this season, per Bleacher Report
“Jaren Jackson Jr. and Rudy Gobert were the only bigs to allow a lower field-goal percentage inside six feet among players who defended more than 400 shots at that range.” pic.twitter.com/SM0Lgr1N9b
— Cavaliers Nation (@WeAreCavsNation) April 28, 2022
Areas of Improvement
The biggest area of improvement for Mobley will be his shooting.
In all fairness, Mobley promises to be much better than that.
For starters, Mobley is already a much better defender than both of those two.
Offensively, Mobley is similar to those two in his slightly underwhelming shooting.
But, Mobley still took shots.
From three, he shot 25% on 1.3 attempts per game; from inside the arc, he was a solid 54.1% shooter (just over 10 shots/game).
He could also stand to improve his free throw numbers (66.3% last season).
Much of Mobley’s future projections are personnel dependent.
Fortunately, the only biggest change on the horizon for Mobley is the potential addition of Collin Sexton.
Will Sexton take away touches from Mobley?
Defensively, Mobley’s numbers shouldn’t change much.
He’s a great scheme fit in J.B. Bickerstaff’s system and has shown he can manage a complex lineup alongside another, more traditional big.
If anything, his defensive numbers could balloon in year two with the same core.
Expect Mobley to be in the mix for an all-defense team and (potentially) compete for defensive player of the year.
An improvement in his shooting across the board could also put him in the All-NBA conversation.
His rebounds, blocks, and general defensive stats should bump up a bit (are 8.7 rebounds/1.9 blocks too lofty?)
If he could put up a .270 (1.8 attempts)/.600 (12.8 attempts)/.710, Mobley would certainly be taking an offensive leap forward.
These are big goals, but Mobley is more than capable.