British prospect Ryan Richards has received rave reviews for his performances on day one the NBA’s pre-Draft camp in Chicago.
The Kent-born forward, who was widely criticised for his decision to enter the Draft after only a handful of professional outings in Spain and Austria, impressed scouts and observers in work-outs against some of the best college talent in the USA.
The 19-year-old still has until next month to decide whether to keep his name in contention or return to Gran Canaria for next season but he has now earned the attention of the league’s talent evaluators.
“He’s fundamentally sound,” said Len Elmore, the former NBA star-turned-television analyst. “He doesn’t some of the flaws in his game that you might have if you developed your game in the States, like rolling the ball out or playing in some areas.
“Those are the kinds of guys the coaches want to work with, somebody who has with a bit of purity in their game and with the fundamentals. You can build talent off that foundation.”
Jay Williams, once a college star at Duke University, believes Richards – who was left out of Great Britain’s squads for this summer, was the most surprising performer on show.
“He also showed the ability to shoot the ball from the perimeter,” he said. “And also he’s only 19. He’s still growing into that body.”
Watch ESPN's highlights on Ryan from Chicago.