Summary: Notes:Biedrins made a name for himself when he came to the U.S. this summer and played in several high school summer tournaments here. By most accounts he dominated the competition and became a top prospect for this years draft. Has been dominant of late in the Under 18 Championships in Serbia. Averaged 21.8 ppg, 14.4 rpg, and 2.6 apg in the tournament and dominated another top prospect, Johan Petro. Insider traveled to LA in May to watch him workout for the Lakers, Jazz, Clippers and Nuggets.
Upside: He's unlike any Euro I've ever seen. He's long (7-foot with a 7-1½ wingspan), has great lateral quickness, is an explosive leaper with a 34½ inch vertical jump (Chris Bosh and Carmelo Anthony each have a 33-inch verticals, by way of comparison) and ... drum roll please ... Biedrins prefers to play in the paint, where most 7-footers belong. He's a pure four whose specialty is defense, shot blocking and energy -- not real staples of the Euros who have been flooding the draft the past few years. His body is ripped, and he has a strong core that allows him to play in the post. He bench presses 185 pounds around 15 times. Only one big guy in Chicago (Jason Keep) topped that in combine testing last year.
Downside: What will ultimately scare a few teams away is his pedestrian outside shooting ability and questions about the competition level he played against in Latvia. Biedrins' outside shot isn't bad (in fact, in the second workout with the Clippers and Nuggets, it was actually very, very good), but it's clear from his shooting form that he struggles to hit anything consistently outside of 12 feet -- think Andrei Kirilenko when he first came into the league.
Insider Projection: He's been slipping a bit. Teams fear that he's too raw to help anytime soon. Realistically, he'll probably fall anywhere from No. 5 to No. 12. But chances are it will be a lot closer to 12 than 5.