After being selected in the second round in the 2014 NBA draft by the Phoenix Suns, Alec Brown started his professional career in the NBA D-League. After playing 17 games for the Bakersfield Jam, he then opted to go overseas and began to start his overseas experience there. The Minnesota native played one season for Obradoiro, came back to the D-League and after Ondrej Balvin got hurt, he signed a short-term contract for Estudiantes, that was later extended to the end of this season. Brown earned himself a new contract with outrageous shooting numbers in just six games and established his reputation as a highly respected stretch-big.
This year Brown’s numbers have come to earth a little bit. The 7-footer, who is able to play both the four and the five, stands at 35,8% for the season from downtown. Looking at some of his highlights, you might start to wonder if that is going to increase and if he is able to break the 40% margin one more time. His shooting motion looks almost flawless for a guy his size and his release is really fast. It’s really important that he hits those long bombs at a high rate, because he’s not much of an inside guy and clearly prefers the jump shooting part in his game.
Another strong suit of Brown is his mobility. There aren’t many seven foot tall athletes out here in Europe who run the floor as hard as he does. He makes himself available for outlet passes and puts pressure on the rim. If he is matched up against a slow footed Center, Brown can certainly use his quickness in the open court to his advantage.
His mobility might be more of a thing on offense though. On defense Brown gets caught in between too much in pick and roll situations and he still hasn’t figured out quite yet, how he really wants to defend the pick and roll as he’s constantly changing his defense. He’s not a point-blank liability out there, but this part of his game is clearly an area, where he needs some further coaching or a strict system that helps him. Turning the back to the ball is also not ideal and playing through it really requires some high IQ or active rotations from teammates.
Besides his pick and roll defense, there are further questions. One of them deals with his toughness. Brown is not known as a fighter on the glass and he gets pushed around by dudes, who are bulkier, but smaller than him. There is evidence on both sides of the floor, as he isn’t really establishing a true post-position on offense too. Some of it has to do with teammates, who aren’t looking for him down-low, but part of it is his fault. I should also note, that his post-game is not highly developed and that he likes to shoot a turnaround-jumper instead of a hook shot.
Although he doesn’t get physical with his opponents, Brown could (and sometimes can) really affect a game with his defense and you wish he would establish his presence way more more. His sheer length and wingspan influences opponents shots and from time to time he gets up for a huge rejection. He isn’t a frightened rim protector yet, but he clearly has his moments.