Position: Shooting guard
A three-point specialist can be labeled as a one-trick pony, but Tyler Herro is much more than that. His rising draft stock demonstrates the surprising diversity to his game.
Herro was a heralded recruit out of high school, showing up on the elite college radar after the high school summer camp circuit. He was always known as a scorer, but he’s proven to be more athletic and a better defender than he was given credit for when he first arrived at Kentucky.
Hunter. That’s how I would first describe Herro’s game. No, I’m not talking about the outdoor sportsman or a bargain shopper. Herro is a hunter for his shot. He knows what works for him so well, that even at 19 years of age, he works tirelessly to get to his spot on the court and knock down his jumper. Watch a game and watch how much he runs; you’ll notice a striking resemblance to what it looks like to watch JJ Redick on the court for the Sixers. Herro may run a couple miles in a game, creating space and coming off screens.
His shooting mechanics are textbook and his stroke is pure. Because of his youth, he can be a little inconsistent with his long-range shot at times, but as we saw in his lone season at Kentucky, that only improved. He is skilled at the three-point shot as well as at the mid-range jumper.
The “3-and-D” phrase is perhaps thrown around too liberally at times, but it may end up applying to Herro. Look no further than the Wofford-Kentucky second-round NCAA Tournament game. Fletcher Magee came in as the nation’s leading three-point shooter at 151 makes last season and 509 in his career. Herro was tasked with defending Magee, who was coming off a win over Seton Hall in which he buried seven threes. In the loss to Kentucky, Magee made zero perimeter shots — 0 for 12. I’m not saying it was all Herro, but he was on him all game and it definitely affected Magee.
The first thing that jumps out about Herro is his size. His 6-foot-6, 192-pound frame isn’t the ideal NBA body. While he’s adept at coming off screens to shoot, he often hurries to set his feet and that accounts for some of his inconsistent numbers from the perimeter. He’s not a great passer and couple that with a loose handle, he is susceptible to turnovers and having the ball stolen. He’s more athletic than at first glance, but he doesn’t have the NBA speed that will allow him to consistently keep up with quicker guards.
One of the bigger issues the Sixers faced, especially in the playoffs, was the lack of a long-range threat outside of Redick. In an ideal world, they re-sign Redick, Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris. But that’s not necessarily reality, and even if they do, having a reliable, young perimeter shooter will provide dividends for years to come.
Herro’s stock is rising after pre-draft workouts and a pro day, so he may not be around at 24 when the Sixers pick. But if he is, they should consider the greater need they’d fill for seasons to come.
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