Hailing from Sacramento, Cameron Oliver (a one-time Oregon State commit) is one of the more intriguing prospects in the 2017 NBA Draft. He came onto the college basketball scene at the University of Nevada and was a key cog in turning the Wolf Pack from a moribund program to the top of the Mountain West conference standings.
In his first year, Oliver had an impressive debut season in Reno as he averaged 13 points, nine rebounds and two blocks as he guided the Wolf Pack from nine wins the previous season to 24 wins and a CBI Championship. In his second season, after declaring for the draft and returning to school, Oliver was even better as he improved his numbers from the previous season. His points per game went up from 13 to 16 as he led the Wolf Pack to the Mountain West regular season and tournament championships as Nevada returned to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2007.
Now Oliver is looking to take his game to the next level as he hopes to be selected in the 2017 NBA Draft. Oliver is a tantalizing prospect due to his combination of athletic ability to attack the rim and solid shooting from the three-point line. Oliver is not without his issues however as he does struggle on the defensive end; his offensive game is still raw and he struggles with an inconsistent motor. Overall, Oliver is still a work in progress who has the ability and the skills that NBA teams look for in a prospect.
Here are some of Oliver’s strengths and weakness for Cam Oliver as we head towards the 2017 NBA Draft.
Cameron Oliver is an explosive athlete who can finish strong around the rim and is a solid three-point shooter and a decent low-post scorer as well. On defense, Oliver is a good rim protector who averaged close to three blocks per game in his last season at Nevada. Oliver does have the tools and ideal size at 6-foot-8 and 240 pounds that NBA executives look for in a player.
Oliver is still underdeveloped as an offensive player as he does tend to settle for long, bad jumpers instead of using his athletic ability to take the ball to the rim. His post-up game needs a lot of work as it is unpolished in that facet of the game. On defense, Oliver tends to get loss in his defensive assignment and can be easily fooled by pump fakes by the opposing shooter. Oliver, at times, displays an inconsistent motor and can coast a bit on his athletic ability. Also, there is a question on what position he will play at the next level. He does not have the height or weight to be a power forward but he lacks the all-around shooting consistency to be a small forward so it is up to the team that selects Oliver to decide where he fits best.
Cameron Oliver was a key contributor in Nevada basketball’s resurgence. He improved his numbers from his freshman season to his sophomore season and improved his three-point shooting as well. Oliver has the physical tools that to catch on in the NBA and could thrive in the right setting. He does need to develop a better post-up game, sharpen up his shooting mechanics and improve his defense to be a contributing player on a NBA team. The popular comparison for Oliver is Golden State Warriors forward Draymond and like Oliver, Green has the same type of versatility and weakness as well coming out of college. If Oliver can improve in those areas where he struggles at, then he can be a successful play in at the next level.