Standing 6’6 and 220lbs at first glance Newton may strike most as the physical bang in the low post type. No doubt he can mix it up down in the paint. What may ultimately set him apart from many in his class however, is the inside/outside versatility to his game. Newton shot well overall (51% FG) in ’11-’12, but most impressive was in success from long-range (42% 3PT). Albeit on a fairly small volume (28 for 66) Newton displayed a consistent stroke beyond the arc and gave defenders another offensive element/threat about which to worry. A consistent and effective finisher, Newton plays well through contact and is steady from the Free Throw line (75% FT ’11-’12). Asked to define his area of opportunity Newton listed a desire to improve his “lateral speed and jumping ability”. Not necessarily a jump-out-of-the-building athlete Newton relies on strength, body control, and an improving outside shot when putting in work on the offensive side of the court. Not yet an accomplished distributor (2.0 APG ’11-’12) Newton caries a 1:1 Assist/Turn Over ratio, which given his size, is more than adequate. Citing early interest from Arizona State, Penn State, Portland, Stanford, and Washington State, the Harvard-Westlake Forward should expect a dramatic rise in his recruit stock with any improvement over his solid ’11-’12 production.
Now almost 2 years removed from significant shoulder surgery Derick Newton’s ’11-’12 campaign should have put to rest any injury related concerns. The focus transfers solely to his game and its continued development. At 6’6 and not hoisting a high volume from behind the arc (66 in ’11-’12) Newton’s overall FG% (51) is a couple of ticks lower than expected. Newton shot 52% on 2PT FG’s and ideally that needs to get north of 55%. Averaging just 2.0 TO’s per game in ’11-’12 Newton demonstrates above average ball security, but has yet to prove an above average distributor (2 APG). This is not a huge area of concern, but taking his Assists into the 3.0-4.0 range would further substantiate his status as a complete prospect. Blocks (0.7) and Steals (1.0) were negligible last season and represent further opportunities to impact the game. Newton may have worn down a bit down the stretch last season. He managed to top 5 Rebounds twice over the final 7 games. Fair chance fatigue began to set in after a full year away from the game.
17.1 Points and 6.9 Rebounds would serve as lofty goals for the average High school Forward. For Derick Newton they may represent nothing more than a scratch of the surface to his lofty potential. There’s a fair chance Newton may gain another 1-2 inches of height and may naturally fill out to the 230lb range. At 6’8 230lbs Newton could slide into a PF slot, and with the agility and outside game of a SF would prove a nightmarish match-up for most defenders. Newton appears a natural scorer and should push the 18-20 Point range his junior season. If he does in fact hit his goal of averaging a double-double there’s little doubt he’ll grab the attention of West Coast high majors and hold plenty of options when it comes time to choose his collegiate home. Asked to summarize his game Newton seemingly hit the nail square on the head, “Production! I’m not really flashy I just get the job done. I can score in many different ways. I do what it takes to win.” Doesn’t appear Newton will develop into a rim-rocking YouTube sensation, but I’m confident projecting a spot in Rivals ’12-’13 top 150 and a dialed-up recruitment as he progresses through his junior campaign. If averaging 20 and 10 represents “not really flashy”, D1 programs will take it all day long.