Pure Shooter

Josh Carter Scouting Report

Josh Carter is one of the best pure shooters in the globe, having hit over 38% on at least 175 three-point attempts in each of his last three seasons with Maccabi Ashdod, Spartak Saint Petersburg and Montepaschi Siena and in all four of his years at Texas A&M between 2005 and 2009.

He is an excellent catch-and-shooter with a very fluid motion and a consistent follow through. Unfortunately Siena’s offense didn’t call for him to jet around screens much and his role mostly consisted of floating around the perimeter waiting for passes off drive-and-kicks. Carter’s shot is rarely blocked due to his high release point, possible because of his six-foot-seven height and six-foot-11 wingspan. He is the textbook definition of what a set shooter should look like.

His efficiency decreases significantly when he is forced to take one or two dribbles in order to elevate, though. Carter does get decent separation off the bounce as he is actually quite quick attacking closeouts and rarely forces bad looks as his low shot attempt average can attest but the ball simply does not go in as much on pull-ups. He has a nice handle and dribbles the ball low when driving with some speed, a must for taller players to navigate traffic. His turnover rate was impressively low.

Carter is more athletic than the average European swingman and is capable of playing above the rim but rarely does it in a halfcourt setting as he’s mostly looking to pass the ball when forced to put it on the ground. Carter only took 11 shots at the rim in 265 Euroleague minutes and only 140 of his 487 shots were two-point attempts in 1,721 minutes combining the Euroleague, Eurocup and Italian league. He averaged fewer than two free throws per game.

Siena’s offense had the ball monopolized by its lead ball-handlers so there weren’t many opportunities to see Carter actively participate in shot creation, which is surprising considering how capable he looked in the few times he had to do it. His assist rate was disappointingly low.

But his mere presence on the floor is very impactful. Siena averaged 17.5 more points per 100 possessions in the Euroleague with Carter in the lineup as opposed to in the bench and he ranked fourth in the Italian league in offensive rating among small forwards.

Carter is a functional team defender, aware of his rotations and attentive to his switching responsibilities. He’s disciplined, pretty much never gambling for steals. His steal rate was understandably low. He plays hard but struggles badly with his individual defense, though. Bigger, more physical types like Alessandro Gentile can take him into the post and Carter provides little resistance due to his 200-pound lean frame, which forces double-teams and scrambles. He also struggles against smaller attacking guards as his quickness doesn’t translate into lateral mobility on defense and he can’t stay in front of opponents to contain dribble penetration. Siena allowed on average 110 points per 100 possessions combining the three leagues it played in last season.

Editor’s Note: Statistical data for this post was researched at in-the-game.org and basketball.realgm.com.

Rafael Uehara is the managing editor of ‘Basketball Scouting’. More of his work can be found here or at Upside & Motor, where he is a regular contributor. He can be followed on twitter as @rafael_uehara.

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