De’Andre Hunter: Intelligence
Our scouting grades represent the composite opinion of at least three different scouts. Each category is graded based on how we view a player’s current ability level relative to NBA players at the same position (guard, wing, forward or big). A grade of 1 indicates replacement level, a grade of 5 indicates NBA average, and a grade of 10 indicates historically elite. Our composite scouting notes help provide context for our grades.
By and large, Hunter is very aware of both himself and teammates, especially on the defensive end. He shows good instincts when rotating on the weak side and can challenge on hedges and recover to his man without allowing an easy basket. He does get stuck on solid screens, something which can catch him off guard when applied at the correct angle, but he is very often cognizant of incoming screens. He does get lost on the offensive side of the ball more often, putting himself in bad positions in the short corner by driving baseline from the mid post.
Generally a very high IQ player, Hunter pays attention to the clock and knows how long he has to get a shot off. He has great awareness when being doubled out of the low post and can find an open man. Defensively, he is a smart doubler who is good at challenging late in the shot clock without fouling. He is very aware in team defense situations, knowing when to tag in ball screens as a help defender.
A good defensive decision maker, Hunter moves well and is good at assessing weak side situations where help is needed. On offense, he is a good system passer, but his playmaking is somewhat lacking outside of dump downs to interior post-ups. He needs to improve at finding players on the wings when he is driving as he can get a little single minded when moving downhill. While his offensive decision making could improve, he may not operate with the ball in his hands and a live dribble very often at an NBA level, somewhat downplaying the importance of this skill set.
Hunter’s decisiveness can definitely wax and wane with his comfort level on the offensive end. He can be explosive when on the attack after his opponent reveals any weakness, but tends to be less comfortable looking for relocating teammates while on the move. He is patient and doesn’t force things on defense, allowing the game to develop in front of him and reacting appropriately.
Anticipation (A to C)
Virginia's defense does not feature a lot of A-to-C switching or rotating, especially in regards to Hunter. He has shown the ability to rotate and help as well as hedge and recover but has relatively few instances where he has had to showcase true anticipation. His lower score in this category comes from how he can be blown by on closeouts, especially after rotations.