Small Forward, 6’7″, 220 lbs. Junior, Ohio State University, 21 years old
35.4 minutes, 19.8 points, 44.4 field goal percentage, 34.4 three point percentage, 83.4 free throw percentage, 1.3 assists, 5.9 rebounds, 0.5 steals, 0.3 blocks.
DeShaun Thomas’s biggest strength is his scoring. On an Ohio State team that didn’t have any other big scoring threats, Thomas was every opposing defense’s main focus. He has a smooth jump shot, as well as a nice post game. Thomas is at his best when he is in the catch-and-shoot role, no matter where he shoots it from. One of DeShaun’s best traits might be his mentality. He enjoys pressure situations, as we were able to see during his last season at Ohio State.
One of DeShaun’s big weaknesses is his defense, especially at the next level where his size may be a concern. He’s not big enough to play power forward, where he played a lot in college, and he’s not athletic enough to effectively guard small forwards.
Another big concern is his rebounding. Out of the power forwards in college, Thomas ranked dead last in defensive rebounding. If Thomas isn’t rebounding well, and doesn’t shoot well in the same night, there’s really no point in having him in the game.
The last concern is his shot selection and three point shot. As I said earlier, he has a nice jump shot, but he only shot 34.4 percent from three in his last season in college — that’s not ideal. To add to that, Thomas forces a lot of shots; this may come from the fact that he had to carry Ohio State’s offense at times, but it is still troubling.
Where he fits in with the Lakers:
DeShaun Thomas could become an instant scoring boost for the Lakers off of the bench. Earl Clark could become the stretch four in Mike D’Antoni’s offense, while Thomas plays the small forward. His lack of athleticism and rebounding isn’t exactly what the Lakers are looking for, but I could see him being a decent fit on the team since the Lakers could use a reliable offensive weapon off of the bench.
Caleb Cottrell: There are other players I would rather have, but if no one I like left is available, I don’t think it would be a terrible thing. I think he can earn minutes right away, especially with the Lakers awful bench. I watched his whole career at Ohio State because my dad is a big OSU fan, so I may be a bit biased towards him, however.
Jacob Rude: Thomas would give the Lakers another scoring option off the bench, but his weaknesses are everything the Lakers already have. Questionable defending? No thanks. Taking bad shots? I’ll pass. There’s a lot of options worse than Thomas, but there are also a lot better.