Kenny Wooten finished his sophomore year season averaging 6.3 PPG and 4.8 RPG with 2.2 BPG on 59% shooting. While that doesn’t stand out, Wooten’s impact deeply lies in the blocks per game. Here’s why I like Kenny Wooten more than the numbers suggest I should:
Tools: Shot blocking, athleticism
- Elite shot blocker
- Great athlete
- Jump shot potential
- Great FG%- plays within himself and takes smart shots only
- Long arms
- Undersized at 6’9
- Still raw
- Limited offensively; can’t create for himself
Overall: Kenny Wooten is an explosive athlete and explosive shot blocker with a rim running, rim protecting skillset. Wooten’s game is quite simple: he hovers around the paint as an elite help side defender and shot blocker, while offensively being low usage and playing above the rim as a dive man. Wooten has a high IQ on both ends- defensively he calculates his shot block attempts, and offensively he doesn’t take bad shots, and only goes for shots he can make at a high percentage. Often times these were dunks due to his elite athleticism and elite second jump that he used to help him on the offensive glass. Defensively, he used his elite athleticism to quickly recover at the rim. Wooten has long arms which helps make up for his height.
NBA Comparison: Floor: Khem Birch; ceiling: George Johnson
Projected draft range: 2nd round/undrafted
Fit with Mavericks: Usually being limited offensively is a negative, but for the Mavericks, that makes Wooten a better fit. Carlisle has traditionally done better with low usage centers that defend the rim. Wooten would provide more athleticism than previous options, which could give him high upside with the Mavericks. Wooten could easily absorb Salah Mejri’s minutes without much, if any, drop off (without the shooting). Wooten, like fellow Oregon teammate Louis King, will greatly benefit from NBA spacing and NBA tempo.
If this article interested you, I highly recommend checking out my film review of Wooten vs Washington State here.