This is the sixth part in a six part series that dives into the strengths and weaknesses of all six member’s of Duke’s 2020 freshman class. In case you missed my previous breakdowns, they are right here. In this player breakdown I’ll be taking a closer look at five star combo guard DJ Steward.
DJ Steward is simply a walking bucket. He can score from anywhere due to his soft touch, shifty scoring ability, and shooting range. He’s lengthy which he uses to his advantage defensively and offensively. In this clip Steward uses his quickness to blow past his defender, then uses his long arms to keep the ball out of the reach of the shot blocker at the rim. He finishes strong through the contact, and draws the foul.
Here’s another impressive dribble drive by Steward that showcases his shifty scoring ability. Steward uses change of pace and a quick behind the back dribble to get by his defender. He then uses a euro step to get by a second defender on the wing before finishing through some contact and getting the layup to go down. Sheesh.
In those first two clips, Steward showed off his impressive touch from inside the arc. However, what’s even more impressive is what Steward can do from beyond the arc. He has deep range, and can finish both off the catch and off the dribble. The next two clips showcase his shooting ability.
One question with DJ Steward is what position is he going to play? At the college level that shouldn’t be an issue. But, at the next level it could. Steward likely isn’t big enough to play shooting guard full time, but also hasn’t shown the ability to be a point guard full time. Again, at the college level that shouldn’t matter. Steward is simply too talented to not have success at whatever position he plays. Outside of that, Steward isn’t a great defender. He’s good, but not great. This clip shows a little bit of where Steward can improve as a point guard. He fails to recognize the trap which causes a turnover.
Overall, Steward figures to be a very impactful freshman at Duke, and a potential one and done. He isn’t a lock to go to the NBA after one season at Duke, but NBA teams covet the type of scoring ability that Steward brings to the table. Steward should be one of Duke’s primary scoring options next season.
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That wraps up this series of Duke freshman breakdowns.