“The Question Is His Shooting” | Orlando Magic Rookie Point Guard Anthony Black Has All-Star Potential If He Can Develop A Reliable Jumper

The Orlando Magic drafted the best playmaking guard in the 2023 NBA Draft when they took 6-foot-7 Arkansas Razorbacks star Anthony Black with the No. 6 overall pick.

Black who’s got unreal court vision, and already is a great defender, is a lot like the great Jason Kidd was when he left California after two seasons.

A player with all the intangibles, he will need to work on his shooting if he’s to reach the potential that he has. 

Orlando Backcourt Is Crowded

Black will be joining a pretty full backcourt in Orlando with Jalen Suggs, Cole Anthony and Markelle Fultz, but none of them play the lead guard position like Black, who’s a pass-first guy.

Black’s skillset has CBS Sports Analyst Adam Finkelstein raving about the pass-first guard’s immense potential. 

“The question is his shooting, and he has looked better in the draft process than he looked in college,” said Finkelstein. “If he can figure out that end out, he will end up being a top five player in this class, no doubt.”

Black Was An Outstanding Floor Leader At Arkansas 

Considered a lottery pick since high school, Black played just one season in Fayetteville. There, he averaged 12 points, five assists and five rebounds per game. While he shot a respectable 45 percent from the field, he only shot 30 percent from three. His shot isn’t about mechanics or a funny hitch; he just needs more in-game repetition to become a better range shooter. 

Black is easily the best passer and pick-and-roll guard in the draft, and a lot of that stems from his 6’7″ height and ability to probe and see over the defense. 

Out the gate Black will be elite defensively, as evidenced by his two steals and SEC-best three deflections per game. 

Black Has Penny Hardaway Traits

To compare Black to someone as great as Orlando Magic legend Penny Hardaway may be a stretch, but it’s not that far-fetched. He’s not as skilled offensively as Hardaway was, but he makes up for it with elite basketball IQ and savvy. Throw in his high-level instincts and his ability to penetrate the defense and create easy looks for teammates, and now we’re cooking. 

One player who’s going to love Black is reigning Rookie of the Year Paolo Banchero, who won’t have to create so much of his offense on his own now. 

Black could end up in the thick of the 2023-24 Rookie of the Year race. 

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