Atlanta Hawks: 5 Reasons to Trade for Markelle Fultz

Markelle Fultz #20 Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Markelle Fultz #20 Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
4 of 6
Atlanta Hawks
Markelle Fultz #20 Atlanta Hawks (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Offensive Fit

Now for the on-court stuff. While the idea of acquiring Fultz for the tantalizing aspect of his immense upside is certainly appealing, his play through 33 career games has been troubling. However, just look at what he produced in his lone college season at Washington:

Of course, his shot has been the major cause of concern, but when delving into his career offensive numbers (which are not great), some interesting and surprising stats jump out.

First off, Fultz’s supreme, fluid athleticism allows him to knife his way to the rim with ease, and his frequency of shots at the rim ranks in the 90th percentile of all guards, according to Cleaning the Glass. A 6-foot-9 wingspan on a lanky 6-foot-4 frame coupled with impressive verticality means that Fultz is able to make his way to the rim quite easily with a swift first step.

Though his finishing is not as strong on those drives as his ability to get there, he is still finishing in the 74th percentile of point guards this season with a 59 percent clip at the rim.

Once you step away from the rim is where Fultz’s shot dissipates. Though the second-year player is willing to hoist up midrange shots – with shot frequencies in the 89th percentile on short midrangers, 87th percentile on long twos and 94th percentile of all midrange shots among point guards – his rough-looking jump shot is simply not falling. With a 41.9 field goal percentage and a 45.2 true shooting percentage, Fultz’s shooting efficiency certainly does not match Schlenk’s clear focus on putting players that can shoot at every position.

However, alongside Trae Young, Fultz would have a lot of opportunities to slash to the rim, finish alley-oops and perhaps serve as a backup when Trae is off the floor.