The Numbers Are Not Kind to Davion Mitchell

Looks like a backup PG

Baylor star Davion Mitchell has seen a meteoric rise in this year’s draft cycle. Thanks to his improved shooting and POA defensive impact, many have him going in the top 10. He posted a OBPM of 6.4 and a DBPM of 3.7. Here are juniors who posted similar numbers and who were taken in the first round of the NBA draft:

  1. Kris Dunn Former 5th pick
  2. Ty Jerome, former 25th pick
  3. Shabazz Napier, former 24th pick
  4. Klay Thompson, former 11th pick
  5. Iman Shumpert, former 17th pick
  6. Jimmy Butler, former 30th pick

Interesting group of players, with vastly different NBA destinies. One player that I want to focus on is Jimmy Butler. While their bodies and their games might be different, they both strike me as similar personalities. Both have been overachievers so far in their careers. Mitchell, with his work ethic, dedication, with the help of his defensive ability, instincts and athleticism, will probably trend closer to a Butler than to a Jerome or Napier.

Defensive Metrics

Known as one of the best defenders in college, and an absolute bulldog as a POA defender. He  posted a DBPM of 3.7, defensive rebound rate of 8, ok for a guard, steal rate of 3.3, block rate of 1.2, all above average numbers. There is only one junior who posted similar numbers, Toney Douglas. If we expand that to other ages we get

  1. Sophomore Mathisse Thybulle
  2. Freshman Tony Wroten
  3. Sophomore Dion Waiters
  4. Freshman and Sophomore Jeff Teague

Not the most encouraning bunch of players, and all of them were younger than Davion when they posted these numbers. I guess if you draft him you are hopefully he trends towards a 6 foot version of Thybulle.

Will the he be able to space the Floor?

There has been a lot of divineness when it comes to Mitchell’s shot. I’m more in the pessimist camp, since I value FT% a lot, and his has been around 65% his whole career. Davion posted a FT% of 65, a free throw rate of 21,both are really poor numbers, especially for a athletic, undersized guard three point percentage of 44.7, nuclear percentage really,  and usage of around 20, which is more low than high. Here are some similar players in terms of production, all of them freshmen:

  1.  Tyrese Haliburton, shot 40% his rookie year
  2. Cory Joseph, career 33% from 3
  3. Tj Warren, career 36% from 3

All of them were 2 or 3 years younger than Davion when they posted these numbers. I am a bit more optimistic now, but I still think he might end up closer to 35% than 40% in the NBA.

Creation for Others

Davion has a very impressive 2.3 assist to turnover ratio, with over 5 assists per game at Baylor. His usage was an ok 20% and assist% a solid 27%. Here are drafted players in the first round who posted similar numbers:

  1. Junior Payton Prichard,  around 3.5 assists per 36 his rookie year
  2. Junior De’Andre Bembry, peaked at 2.5 assists per game so far in his career, 4 per 6
  3. Sophomore Jerian Grant, peaked at 5 assists per game
  4. Sophomore Shane Larkin peaked at 4.5 assists per game

A depressing list, especially for a prospect that should go top 10 and is billed as a starting point guard from day one. The list screams backup point guard, at best. Or maybe a Euroleague stud like Larkin.

Scoring Volume

Davion really struggled to get to the line, with only 2 attempts per game. He took a similar number of 2s and 3s, both finishing at a very high rate. He posted a FT rate of 20, FT% of 65%, 8 3pt field goal attempts per 100 possessions and a 3pt field goal percentage of 44.7%. He took 5.6 2s per game and made 56%. Let’s try and find players who posted similar numbers:

  1. Sophomore Tyrese Haliburton, averaged 13 points his rookie year.
  2. Senior Admiral Schofield scored a total of 99 points in the nba
  3. Junior Jabari Bird, scored a total of 39 points in the NBA


The numbers are not kind to Davion Mitchell. If history is our teacher, he could be a mistake that costs someone a lot of money. To me he seems like a backup point guard, who might be a decent passer, floor spacer, really struggling to generate a lot of points for himself. He will probably be an very good defender on the next level. But I just don’t see a more athletic, but worse shooting Patrick Beverley going in the lottery.

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