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Kevin Durant says Marcus Smart could play in the NBA right now

Nov 20, 2013, 12:59 PM EDT

Oregon v Oklahoma St Getty Images

Marcus Smart turned a few heads the other day dropping 39 points on a ranked Memphis team to lead his No. 7 Oklahoma State Cowboys to a blowout win. Smart hit 5-of-10 from three and when the defense closed on him he penetrated and either scored or created for others. Plus he can play defense.

That caught the eyes of a lot of fans — including the best player in the state of Oklahoma right now, Kevin Durant. KD was at the game where Smart took over and was impressed like everyone else, as he told the USA Today.

“That is a tough shot to make, and that is a gutsy shot to shoot (a pull up three in transition that Smart made),” Durant told USA TODAY Sports after the game. “But he earned the right to take those shots. Marcus can play in the league right now. Definitely.”

“He is poised,” Durant said. “And the extra year will help him out as far as knowing the game more. I wish him good luck.”

Most scouts already knew that.

DraftExpress.com has Smart going sixth in this draft (and if he had come out last summer he might well have topped the 2013 draft). Smart was a team leader on the Team USA U19 squad sent to the FIBA Championships last summer and he did it with effort — he was not only the best player on the team he was the hardest worker. Scouts love that.

Smart has size, athleticism and can defend the point well, he creates off the dribble and is a good passer (particularly in transition, he’s strong in the open court).

The book on him is that he needs to work on his jumper, which is why his shooting against Memphis was noteworthy (but he needs to do it consistently). He needs to choose better when to shoot.

While some are mixed on him this is a potentially very good NBA point guard. Don’t take my word or a scout’s word, just ask KD.

  1. unxpexted1 - Nov 20, 2013 at 1:16 PM

    Well yea…..dude coulda been a top ten pick easy last year. He’s easily better than Anthony Bennett

  2. 1972wasalongtimeago - Nov 20, 2013 at 2:03 PM

    If JR Smiths brother can be in the NBA….

    • asimonetti88 - Nov 20, 2013 at 2:56 PM

      Pretty much. I don’t think there’s any doubt he could play in the league, but the bigger question is if he could play well. Kid definitely has talent. I think he could be a pretty good player once he develops, may take a year or two though.

  3. legend30 - Nov 20, 2013 at 4:41 PM

    I already seen Parker, Wiggins, Smart, and Randle. Now, I need to start watching Gordon. I can’t wait for the NCAA tournament and NBA draft!

  4. philtration - Nov 20, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    Smart and Parker are going to be beats in the NBA

  5. philtration - Nov 20, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    *Beasts*

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