A star transfer from Radford, Carlik Jones made an immediate impact at Louisville, earning All-ACC honors in 2021. As a senior, Jones averaged 16.8 PPG, 4.5 APG, 5 RPG, 1.4 SPG, 0.1 BPG, and 2.1 TOPG on shooting splits of 40/32/82. Below is his full scouting report:
Name: Carlik Jones
Height/Weight: 6’1 / 174
Wingspan/ standing reach: 6’5 ¼ / 8’2
Hand size: 9
Pre-Draft team: Louisville
Tools: Defensive playmaking
- Defensive disruptor that forces turnovers with ease
- Projectable jump shot
- Reliable shooter off the dribble within the flow of the offense
- Best playmaking comes in P&R sets
- Long arms
- Strong head fakes help him finish at the rim
- Dynamic space creator with a hard crossover
- Lacks explosiveness getting to the rim; doesn’t blow by defenders
- Must improve shot selection
- Must get better at finishing over bigs
- Needs to speed up jump shot
- Can struggle with turnovers
- Needs to get more consistent as a scorer from game to game
Carlik Jones is a defensive-minded guard with the ability to create his own shot and be a microwave off the bench. With a strong crossover that creates lots of space, particularly near the 3 point line, he should be able to get his shot off in the NBA. However, he needs to speed up his jumper, which will be crucial in being able to shoot over defenses. Additionally, he must get better at finishing at the rim, particularly against big men. While he can finish well against guards on drives, he struggles against length at the rim, which could negate his space creation and with a simple scouting report, teams can gladly pressure Jones to the rim. The lack of finishing may stem from his lack of overall explosiveness, because he has good skill near the rim with head fakes and finishing moves. As a passer, Jones is basic and doesn’t make many advanced reads, but can be both a reliable scorer and passer out of the pick & roll. Defensively, Carlik Jones is a pest and forces lots of turnovers. He can disrupt shots, off-ball sets, and 1-on-1 situations, making him a valuable defender as a guard both on-ball and off-ball. Jones likely needs a year in the G-League, but is worth a two-way contract as a gamble on defensive upside with some offensive value.
Similar to: Darren Collison, Donte Divincenzo, Isaiah Briscoe
Projected draft range: 50-undrafted
Expected role: Combo guard that provides defensive value, shooting, and P&R prowess as a score-first guard next to a pure point guard.
Unplayable if: Speed of jumper holds his shooting back, and turnovers and overall simple playmaking limit his effectiveness everywhere else.
Exceeds expectations if: finishing translates and his overall shot selection improves as an NBA player.
Fit with Mavs:
Carlik Jones could be an undrafted free agent acquisition that adds value as a defensive presence in the backcourt, with potential to develop his scoring through run with the Texas Legends. If everything goes right, Jones could be a third string or emergency backup guard in Dallas within a year.