Shooting has defined basketball in 2020 and every general manager is looking to improve their team's 3-point ability in any way possible. For that reason, there is going to be a premium put on deep shooters in the draft that pressure defenses the moment they step over half.
Here are the five best shooters in the 2020 Draft.
Players are listed alphabetically.
Desmond Bane, TCU
For many teams in the NBA their nucleus of star talent is set and they are looking to augment their leaders with complimentary pieces. That often means shooting, and teams looking for a catch-and-shoot floor spacing dream don't need to look any further than Bane.
A four-year college player, Bane has a massive sample size that shows consistent excellence from behind the arc. His career average was 43% from 3 and doing that over four seasons shows the consistency that professional basketball requires. Bane also stands at 6-foot-6, giving him good size to shoot over top of closeouts. Muscular at 215 pounds, he has the lower body strength to shoot from well behind the arc with ease.
Bane has premium shooting ability at a premium position and he'd be comfortable in pretty much any scenario spacing the floor around stars.
Tyrese Haliburton, Iowa State
Haliburton might not have prototypical shooting form but after a second year in college hitting over 42% of his 3s he has cemented himself as one of the best shooters in this class. There is a bit of slingshot action to his release that looks a little funky but his shots fall, and they fall a lot.
What makes his shooting so special is the fact that he isn't just sitting in the corner and taking wide open shots, many of his attempts come off the pick and roll where he takes a few dribbles before pulling up. Haliburton was a key cog in Iowa State's offense and the fact the ball was in his hands so often meant many of his 3s were coming off the bounce and often at key points in the game with the game or shot clock winding down.
For most players shooting off the dribble is far more difficult than shooting off the catch and the fact he was able to shoot so well off the dribble suggests he could be even better of a shooter when he's playing off the ball and able to get more open attempts in rhythm.
MORE: How high will Haliburton be selected in the draft?
Isaiah Joe, Arkansas
A volume shooter in the truest sense, Joe had one of the greenest lights in the NCAA to shoot whenever he was open and he took full advantage. Joe averaged 11 3s a game last year, more than any other player on this list, and in doing so demonstrated the lack of conscience that many NBA shooters need to thrive in that role. Yes, sometimes Joe would go cold, but he also had incredible hot streaks and that ultimately brought his career 3-point average in college to 38%. Considering he showed questionable shot selection at times, that number could easily have been better without the countless heat checks but in an NBA structure he should take better shots and have even better results.
Joe's favorite 3-pointer to take is in transition, whether it's as a player leaking out and getting a hit ahead pass or as a trailer. There is something he loves about running into a shot off the break and those will be the attempts to watch from him as he enters the league.
MORE: Who are the five best defenders in the draft?
Markus Howard, Marquette
It's entirely likely that Howard won't hear his name called on draft night but as an eligible player who put together one of the greatest shooting college careers in history his name belongs on this list.
Howard is a career 43% 3-point shooter on seven attempts per game, numbers that show his incredible touch from deep. Almost all his attempts were off the dribble as one of the highest-usage players in college hoops last year and his ability to hit tough shots put him in elite company. Shooting off the dribble is one of the most sought-after skills in basketball and Howard's excellence in this area means he could hear his name called on draft night.
The reason he may go undrafted is that he's only 5-foot-11 and struggles on the defensive end but his offensive upside might be enough for a team to take a shot on him. Seeing the elevated level of defense in the NBA playoffs it's apparent that you need multiple players who can get a bucket individually and Howard can do that better than just about anyone, especially when it comes to pulling up from deep.
Aaron Nesmith, Vanderbilt
Nesmith was having a monumental year shooting the basketball until injuries cut his season short at only 14 games but what he did in those contests has NBA teams intrigued. At over eight attempts per game, Nesmith hit a ridiculous 52% of his 3s, a number that is impossible to ignore.
To further put Nesmith's outstanding shooting season into context, it needs to be noted that Vanderbilt was a team that struggled offensively and lacked established point guard play, meaning Nesmith was in a difficult spot trying to muster open looks. However, that didn't stop him as he snaked around screens, sprinted into open space when his defender looked away, or simply pulled up from so far behind the arc that his defender wouldn't come out to get him.
Nesmith's sample size as a shooter is small but his form looks immaculate and he's got good size at 6-foot-6. In a draft that lacks a lot of upside, teams may be looking for the best role players available and Nesmith looks the part of floor spacing wing.
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