Be Wary of Otto Porter

Georgetown Men's College Basketball Otto Porter

Be Wary of Otto Porter

The future of Georgetown forward Otto Porter is in no way affected by what former Georgetown forward Jeff Green has been able to do in the NBA. The two are not literally connected in any way whatsoever…just figuratively. They happen to have an awful lot in common, which does not bode well for Porter if an NBA team is planning on drafting him in the top three, as things are looking right now.

Jeff Green is not a bad NBA player. Many people think of his career as a disappointment because he was taken so highly out of college (fifth overall). But truthfully, he is a serviceable pro player; he came on strong during many parts of the 2012-2013 Celtics season. Green averages double figures, shoots okay from distance and can grab a few boards and defend when he’s engaged. He has essentially not developed at all from the player he was in college though: a man of nearly identical production to one Otto Porter, projected top five NBA draft pick.

Both Green and Porter played under John Thompson III at Georgetown. The system in GU under Thompson is predicated on slow pace, tight defense and scoring when the opportunities present themselves in the fabled Princeton offense. It doesn’t leave much room to develop otherworldly scoring machines. With that being said, both Green and Porter developed into effective offensive players and top weapons in the Big East. They each averaged double digit points per game, grabbed around half a dozen rebounds, dished out a few assists and racked up a couple combined blocks and steals per game. Porter was the better shooter (his three point numbers as a freshman not withstanding), but as draft time approaches, many are declaring Porters’ current NBA comp to Green. Call it lazy journalism if you must; it seems kind of accurate nonetheless.

Very few Hoyas in recent years have had NBA success. In fact, very few exist in the league at all. Green, Roy Hibbert, Greg Monroe and DaJuan Summers are the only ones at this moment. Hibbert is currently a much better pro than he ever was at school thanks to a desire to get himself into shape. In college, he relied on simply being big; now, he’s big and good. Summers is a bit player but Monroe was supposed to be a star like Green and is now approaching the same plateau that Green succumbed to. He isn’t really any better than he was as an amateur. I guess this should really be looked at as more of a coincidence than anything. Just because the two best Georgetown players this decade have not improved at all in the NBA does not mean the next Georgetown player will not improve at all in the NBA. One does not prove the other.

Still, it is a little weird, like USC quarterbacks entering the NFL. We may need one or two more Hoyas for this to become a trend worth studying. Just as fair warning though, Otto Porter may be that next guy, especially if he’s taken in the top three of this month’s draft. Expectations haven’t weighed well on Hoya grads.