Maryland center Diamond Stone is not taking part in 5-on-5 scrimmages at the 2016 NBA Combine in Chicago, but he is meeting with teams and speaking with the media.
As part of a longer meeting with the media on Friday, Stone was asked the players after whom he models his game. His answer? San Antonio's LaMarcus Aldridge and Memphis' Zach Randolph.
Yes, talent-wise those players are absolute ceiling projections for Stone. But as far as skill set models, Stone's explanation is foundationally sound.
"LaMarcus Aldridge, you know, he's ambidextrous just like myself and he has great touch. He can pick-and-pop and I can also," Stone explained. "Zach Randolph, he's not the most athletic but he can score in various ways. He has great footwork and he knows how to use angles.
"I can bring low-post scoring. I can be another competitor on the team. I love to win. I've been winning all my life and I feel like I can be a great teammate."
Stone averaged 12.5 points and 5.4 rebounds in just 22.6 minutes per game as a freshman at Maryland while shooting 56.8 percent from the field and 76.1 percent from the free-throw line.
His offensive upside will be what drives his draft stock, considering the fact that his footwork for a 6-10 player who is 19 years old is exceptional. Like Stone mentioned about Randolph, he is far from unathletic, but also isn't a leaping, explosive athlete. That, conditioning, and maturity will be the biggest question marks ahead of the draft.
He worked well in the pick-and-roll game with guard Melo Trimble as a freshman and his 76 percent shooting from the line should give scouts the feeling that he could develop a mid-range game down the line.
DraftExpress.com recently shifted Stone from a first-round pick to a second-round pick in a new edition of their mock draft. Any team drafting him will know they are drafting a project player and not an immediate plug-and-play option. But, all things considered, Stone could still find himself in the first round.