After a promising freshman year, Canadian born Bennedict Mathurin has shown he has the skill set and upside to make him a potential lottery pick in the 2022 draft.
The 6’6, 210 lbs shooting guard out of Montreal has been nothing short of phenomenal this year. His freshman year Mathurin averaged 10.8 ppg on 47.1% from the field and 41.8% from 3pt. To go along with 4.8 rebounds and 1.2 assists. Coming out of his freshman year the lanky guard did not necessarily have the one-and-done stats, however it was his frame and upside that projected him to be a late first round pick. Last year, Arizona was in the middle of the pack at 17-9, with Mathurin being a much smaller part of the offense as James Akinjo and Azuolas Tubelis doing the majority of the scoring. However, this year with Tommy Lloyd as the new head coach, and Akinjo transferring to Baylor, Mathurin has emerged as a vital part of the Arizona Wildcats success.
On offense he does a bit of everything and is still developing at a rapid rate. In the half court setting he is in the 90th percent shooting 48.6%. In the first half of the season Mathurin has shown that he does not need the ball to be effective as he has scored the majority of his points cutting, coming off screens, or spot up shooting. According to Synergy Sports, when cutting Mathurin is in the 78th percent shooting almost 67% which is deemed as, “very good.” Coming off the screens he has shown some upside with room to develop shooting 35.7% which is ranked as, “good,” by Synergy Sports. Mathurin has developed a nice floater that seems to be his go to coming off screens. He also does not shy away from taking tough shots when needed, showing that he wants the ball when it is most necessary, ranking in the 84th percent in catch and shoot situations when considered, “guarded.” When guarded Mathurin is shooting 42% while his adjusted field goal is 63.5%. Adjusted field goal determines the impact of 3 point shooting on a player’s field goal percentage. Along with his growth shooting the ball, the lanky guard has shown his NBA-like athleticism. His long strides and bounce has proven him to be a real threat in transition and on the offensive glass. On his 26 offensive rebounds the 6’6 guard is shooting 100% on put-backs on 13 attempts. In transition he is able to be a lob threat while also having the ability to take it himself shooting 54.8% in transition. Mathurin certainly passes the eye and will be exciting to see as he continuously develops.
Along with his athleticism contributed to his success on the offensive side, it has proven to be beneficial on defense, as well. His bouncy play style has allowed him to bring in 79 rebounds to this point which is second best on the Wildcats. Along with that, Mathurin has great lateral quickness. His lanky frame has made it much easier for him to stay in front of smaller guards. Mathurin is also very good at moving around the screen whether it is off ball or on ball making it difficult for the offense to get open. When guarding the pick and roll ball hander, Mathurin has held his opponents field goal percentage to 22.2% and 33% coming off screens. The presence that he brings is one that may not show up on the stat sheet, however when watching him play defense it seems like he is everywhere. Mathurin's frame alone gives him the potential to be a force on the defensive end.
Bennedict Mathurin has definitely helped his own draft stock with his play so far this season. It will be exciting to see how he performs against top teams such as UCLA and USC. Keep an eye out for him for the rest of the season.