Welcome back to LWOS NBA Draft Coverage, the column that brings you player profiles for the next crop of professional basketball players that are likely to be selected in the upcoming draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow us on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical profiles and scouting reports. Check out our complete coverage of the 2017 NBA Draft. Last Word On Sports is your new headquarters for all things 2017 NBA Draft!
This Josh Hart NBA Draft profile analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of Villanova’s senior guard.
Josh Hart – 6′ 5″ Guard, Villanova University, 22 Years Old
The guard from Silver Springs, Maryland, led the Villanova Wildcats to the NCAA championship in 2016. Returning for his senior year, Hart led the Wildcats in every major statistical category except for assists, in which he was second. Easily one of the most decorated players in Villanova’s rich basketball history, Hart is also know for his sportsmanship. Hart was a 2017 consensus All-American, as well as the Big East Conference Player of the Year. Hart’s progress throughout his time with the Wildcats can’t be overstated. Coach Jay Wright called Hart “the perfect combination of talent, hard work, intelligence, and humility.”
As a player, Hart showed dynamic improvement each year at Villanova. After winning the NCAA title, Hart entered the NBA Draft last year, but he chose not to hire an agent. Consequently, this allowed him to withdraw himself from consideration and return for his senior season. During his senior year, Hart led the Wildcats to the Big East regular season and tournament titles. He set out to get better and he was able to do so. Hart’s player efficiency rating (28.1 last season) and win shares (7.7) improved in each year of his college career.
Hart turned into an impressive shooter in college. His field goal percentage was over 50 percent (including over 40 percent from three) as a senior. A competitor with a relentless motor, Hart can be described as scrappy. He is mature beyond his years. Hart is 6’5″, weighing 205 lbs. His length, with a 6’8″ wingspan, is a noteworthy attribute. An aggressive defender, Hart averaged 1.6 steals per game and shared the 2016-17 Big East Defensive Player of the Year award.
As top notch talent goes, Hart shows above average athletic ability. With that said, he’s no Russell Westbrook or John Wall athletically. He is 22 years old, which works against him. Hart’s age has caused him to have a perceived limited upside. Hart is a good player with skills in all areas, but he doesn’t show a mastery of any. There are questions about Hart’s ball-handling ability, as well. Other questions include a perceived lack of lateral quickness, which could potentially prove a defensive liability.
Hart is a high character young man. Consequently, he has shown the ability and maturity to adapt to expectation and challenges. Additionally, Hart is able to contribute to an NBA team right away. He is a projected “three-and-D” prospect.
NBA Player Comparison
An outsider could reasonably compare Hart’s game to that of Shane Battier or Danny Green. Hart is a natural leader, much like Battier. Furthermore, Hart has a great basketball IQ, and he’s a strong locker room presence. He should be able to step in as a much-needed “glue-guy.” As NBA front office staffers often say, Hart checks the boxes.
Hart is projected to be an early- to mid-second round selection.