Marquese Chriss

PF/C Washington

6-10, 223,  8-9 SR, 38.5" MV, 

MVR 11-11.5, 7' WS, 

15.8 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 1.7 APG, 1.5 SPG, 

Pure Explosion.

By Tom Mahoney

Chriss is an exciting leaper in a 6-10 body. His Max Vert Reach measured a 1/2 inch below 12 feet. That is is his primary NBA trait. "Marquese, just his talent, if you remember, I had said early, before anyone saw him play, this is arguably the most talented big guy we’ve ever recruited," his HC at Washington Lorenzo Romar said. "People looked at me then like, ‘right.’ I think now we can see. You know that ability was there and we also knew they would definitely play in the NBA. Just how soon? I don’t think Dejounte or Marquese thought they would have a chance to go in the first round after one year. I don’t think anybody thought that. It’s a credit to them and how hard they worked and how they developed so fast to get to that point." He has an elite NBA body, and now just has to add skills and smarts to it. He is at his best when he is using his Vert and length. 

When he can just jump he looks like a top five prospect. "I hate to use the word potential, but he’s got a lot of potential," an Eastern Exec said." He’s still filling out physically, but he’s got good hands. Really explosive. Really good length. His jump shot is improving, but he still mainly relies on playing above the rim. But that’s the great part about him. People love his athleticism." He has worked his 3-point shot into an interesting NBA weapon. If he continues that hard work on his shooting, he could be an explosive stretch four who can shooting 35 to 40% from Three. 

He is a nice jump shooter. He can catch the pass, jump-step forward and shoot it quick. He falls back a little naturally which makes it harder to block as well. He keeps his right arm and body straight as an arrow, and really has spectacular balance in the air, which really shows on his jumper. His jumper is very tight and in control. 

I really like the form of his 3-point shot. "Chriss has more size, length and potential. And it's not as if he had a shabby freshman season," Chad Ford said. "He averaged better than 20 points over his last four games while shooting 50 percent from 3. Athletic 6-9 players who can shoot and block shots don't come along very often, and I think Danny Ainge might be the type of GM willing to gamble on him." The fact that he is such a high flier only makes it that much more impressive. 

He has improved by leaps and bounds this season, and is not the player he was in the beginning of the season. "He's an unpolished player in all senses of the word," a Western Exec said. "As we go along here and do more intel, to me, you can see he can run and jump and he can do those types of things, but what else can he do? It could be that he's an Amir Johnson type. He's okay. Could he become an Antonio Davis, where he's better than okay? I don't know yet. I don't have an opinion on him yet." He raised his game in the PAC-12 Tournament and the NIT above both those guys.

He has that knack for the spectacular, and plays in the air as well as anyone in this Draft. "He's a quicker jumper than [Deyonta] Davis and Ellenson, and he can jump multiple times," a scout said. "He can also step out and shoot the college three. He runs the court pretty well. He's young, he has a lot to learn, he has to get stronger. But his upside can be really good. With him, it's going to take time." He is a top five player in this Draft. I have Simmons, then Ingram and Bender, then Brown and Chriss as my next two. 

He can catch the high pass, turn his body in the air, and slam it down with amazing aerial body control. He is so naturally bouncy, running, jumping, and doing anything athletic. "I think he's naturally gifted and it's going to take time to learn how to play," a Central exec said. "It's a process. You're going to have to wait on him." He has a little fall away game as well. He can two-dribble to the right in the post, then spins to the left or right for the fall away. 

He played two games in the NIT tournament. It was a small sample size, but it is interesting, because it was his last two games of the season, after a year of playing and being coached in the PAC 12. He averaged 23 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 1.5 SPG, and 1.5 APG in the NIT Tournament. He also shot 33.3% from Three, 54.8% from the floor, and 78.6 from the line. However, he still has a ton to learn. He also did not have a single assist, not even by accident, in the two NIT games. That is really disgraceful. He can be so good and show so much potential, but he still has too much of a high school game, and is a straight up ball hog. When the ball gets in his hands on the offensive end, he is shooting it no matter what happens.

He is not only a high flier in a Jolly Green Giant body, he can hit the Three. He can also leap up and shot a straight up and down jumper from the foul line. His mechanics are a little mechanical, but he uses his legs and wrist nicely. His form looked even better in the NIT. He extends the ball a little too much in front of him, but he gets up so high on his release that no one can block it anyway. He can float forward when he is shooting on the break, and still hit the jumper from 15 and in.

He can soar on the fastbreak. He can take off a couple yards away from the hoop, and hop over the center to dunk it. Great alley-ooper. He soars over everything, catches it, and slams it down like no one in this Draft except Zizic. He had a block against a PF, where he leaped over the side of his body and caught it against the board with both hands, and pulled it down. He can run down the baseline and soar up for the alley-oop on the other side of the basket, and almost hit his head on the rim coming down.

Nice defensive instincts. He does a nice job attacking the ball in the air when someone tries to high lob him the ball.  He gets too high and thin sometimes and turns himself into a scarecrow on defense. He looked much better fronting guys on defense. When has to go into a regular defensive stance he can look stiff and passive sometimes. He is great with everything that happens when he is in the air, but he often looks bad when stuck to the floor. When his feet are on the floor he can look like a different player. What saves him on defense is his great aggression. Great timing on blocks. His defense can be troubling. 

He doesn't understand position, and too often looks to leap up and try and block everything. When he doesn't get low in man defense he can look out of balance to me. Not as smooth and explosive in defensive stance when the big is driving on him. He is so much better on defense when he moves to a spot and can just leap. He has nice feet on perimeter defense. He looks elite on the air, but often looks a little lost with his feet on the round. He uses his arms nice in post defense. Does a nice job bumping in the post as well. But when he is locked into an offense player he can really move his feet. He still plays too high in deny defense. 

He can use his left hand for a little jump layup a foot from the basket. He can one dribble with his left down the left lane, but still has to draw it back to his right to shoot it. He is just so used to leaping over everyone that he has never needed to use his left. He can dribble behind his back to the left, which he did in the PAC-12 Tournament against Oregon. He can turn to the baseline from the right block and hit the fall away. When he snaps his wrist on his shot he looks like a top five prospect. Crinkles his fingers oddly on his release sometimes, but it doesn't seem to affect his shot. He gets up so high and floats on his jumper, you can see his perfect form for a split second in the air after he shoots. 

One scary thing about Chriss is that he is a non passer. I find assists to be sign of basketball intelligence, and obviously understanding of team and team concepts, and team work. It is more unusual for Chriss to have an assist than it is for him to have Zero Assists. "Right now Marquese is really raw, and he has a lot of things he has to work on," his HC a UW Romar said. "But his talent package, man, he’s going to be a special player. Then when we started playing games, you just saw some of the things he did. We thought it was just a matter of time before the NBA was going to recognize what he could do." When a guy plays 20 to 30 minutes a game and consistently garners Zero Assists, that is a problem. When he gets the ball in his hands on the offensive end he is shooting it no matter what he has to do. Chriss averaged 18 points, 7.5 rebounds, 2 blocks, and shot 57.1% from Three in the PAC-12 Tournament. He has the work ethic to play in the NBA. 

2015-16 (Freshman): Started all 34 games and averaged 13.7 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.6 blocks… honorable mention Pac-12 All-Freshmen selection… reached double-figures in 24 of 34 games, including four 20 point efforts… had a stretch of 11-straight league games with double-figure scoring…career-high 29 points in the second game of the season against Mount St. Mary’s… was 11-of-18 from the field while adding 10 rebounds and two blocks… one of four double-doubles on the season… had 27 points and 11 rebounds in the first round of the NIT against Long Beach State… led the team in rebounding nine times and in scoring six times… finished fourth in all-time points by a freshman at UW with 467 and fifth in rebounds with 183… had 55 blocks, the most by any freshman in program history.

Chriss Vs Rabb:

I know this screen is too busy, and makes the viewing harder, but it can be hard to find defensive Tape of these guys. Chriss plays some nice deny defense here. See how he keeps his body between Rabb and the ball. He is a little over aggressive over the top. He gives up the backdoor for what should have been a high lob dunk, but it was a fake. But he uses his nice feet recovering as Rabb comes back up the lane (1:04). He plays too high in deny defense. He doesn't bend at all, but he uses his feet nicely to stay with Rabb. Now you can complain about the fronting like me, but he was clearly told by the coaches in the game plan to front Rabb, and he did it very well.

Here he is fronting Rabb in the left post. Watch when the ball gets close, he cuts off the angle, and gives him a bump with his long arm. He is clearly being told by his coaches to front Rabb, and he is doing an excellent job so far, Though he barely bends his knees again (1:14). Pick and roll defense. He stays up on Rabb at the 3-pint line, but doesn't front him. You can see him read the pick before it happens and backs off. He gets a little lower than when he is covering Rabb, but is still too high  (1:19). He uses his feet to back off nicely, but he never cuts off the PG. He stays between the guard and Rabb. Again, it looks like he is covering something specific. He stays between Rabb and the basket, while still facing the PG. In the NBA the PG shoots that. But instead, the PG tries the high lob. However, Chriss is in perfect position to defend the high lob. To me that is two mistakes by the guards trying to pass to Rabb. Chriss used his positioning to take away two different things on the 1st play and this play, and the guards tried to to do those things rather than take what he gave them. It should have been the backdoor pass on the first play, and a shot on the second. But Chriss is playing excellent positional defense on his feet, so far. He forced the guard to make a decision twice, and he made the wrong decision both times.

Here he is fronting Rabb in the post again. Watch how he takes the nice elbow in the chest by Rabb, and still takes the position that he wants. He has to hop around the forearm, and then turns his body to inside position on the Front. He forces the pass to the baseline and off the block.  (1:27). He gets low and extends his right hand to stop the lefty dribble. But he doesn't look balanced. He is so balance and agile in the air, but he doesn't always look balanced with his feet on the ground. He looses position inside to the left, so he has to give up position and just raise his arms in defeat. Which allows the ref to make a bad call. 

He is getting in front of him again. His MVR makes it very difficult to go over the top of him. Then he attacks forward to help on the center, in some kind of half court press. He ends up trapped between the center and Rabb, with Rabb alone in the Paint. He can only do what he is cached to do (1:37). He is not as good in a regular defensive position. He gets tall and thin like a scarecrow. So he can't move his feet in traffic. Which leads to him getting picked by his teammate (1:48). He moves over a little to stay between Rabb and the ball. He steps over late to block the shot on the drive. He misses the block, but makes him adjust the shot higher so he misses, but he also leaves Rabb free on the weakside (2:01). He gets his hand up in the passing lane. Then moves his feet to stay between Rabb and the ball, and gets way out of position (2:16). That is the problem with fronting, you give up inside position. He fights nicely with Rabb when the shot goes up, but all he does is push him a little closer to the basket. Rabb gets the rebound and goes up strong, and all Chriss can do is foul him.

That was a lazy scarecrow box out. He has to get low and wide on the box out. He is so used to just leaping up and blocking everything that he gets lazy inside sometimes. The ball took a bad bounce, and the rebound was just long, and went outside to Rabb (2:27). You can really see on the box out how high he got (2:39). You cannot play inside in the NBA and expect to box out a veteran scarecrowing like that.

Maybe his defining characteristic is that he can look awkward and stiff on the floor, but when he takes flight he becomes elegant, agile, and explosive, and looks like a top five player in this Draft (2:59). Great Jumper. I don't even know what his percentage is yet, but watch the form. He one dribbles and goes straight up with his head arched back a little. He extends his arms a little too forward, but his form is perfect. He uses his Vert and wrist to snap his nice soft jumper (3:12). When you add in his explosion off the floor on defense and rebounding, once he gets smarter with experience and repetition, he will be a very nice explosive stretch Four. See how soft that ball landed in the net.

He has extended his range to the college 3-point line already. Watch the form. He uses his legs to explode up high, keeps his legs together in balance as he raises the ball over his head. Then snaps the ball with his wrist beautifully at the peak, and again look how soft it lands in the net (3:24). Plus, he has expanded his inside game a little as well. He gets the ball on the left block. He uses his Vert to shoot it with his right over 95% of the time (3:32). But he has added a little lefty hook that he can hit through a little contact. He also has a little lefty layup when left all alone.

On the left block. You can see he still doesn't trust his left at all. He has to spin to get back to his right hand and clanks another. He is not ready to play on the left side of the hoop in the NBA yet (3:47). He uses the back pick to get free on the left block again. But he rushes it, gets himself out of balance, and misses (3:54). Sometimes on the boards you just need to find a little space. He has to cross the lane against the grain to find some space on the board (4:09). He has some nice instincts on rebounds. The ball bounces to him, and he is much more comfortable on the right side of the hoop.

Chriss Vs Rabb:

Chriss Vs LBS NIT:

When he plays with his head up he looks great. Simple back door lob he turns into a slam bam highlight. These Tapes really should be called offensive highlights (:19). He got better and better as the season went on. He kept adding to his game. Here he is blowing past the smaller defender with two dribbles and then exploding to the hoop where he gets hammered. He takes the big cheap shot hit early, and doesn't let it affect his game at all. That is the biggest thing we'll learn about him from this Tape (:36). He is terrific in the open court. When he is moving, running, and leaping he looks like a top five pick (:42). He has matured has a player mentally as well. Watch the nice quick swing pass to the top of the key (1:00). Then he sees the two defenders sneak up a little, and he attacks down the baseline. He gets himself in position for the easy alley hoop. Notice the top of his head above the rim.

Watch the hustle getting back on defense, and the elite MVR. He skies up over the other Big, pins the ball against the glass with both hands, and pulls it down. I know the level of comp is low, but that is an amazingly athletic and aggressive play against the big ugly who gave him the nasty cheapshot (1:19). I love how he goes to the left. That is such a weapon for a guy with his length and explosion. Guys with his gifts too often over rely on them, but he has basketball skills as well (1:54). When a guy his size hits 50% from the college Three, even if it was only for the last four games of the season you have to take notice (2:00). Freeze frame it at 2:00. It is not a mistake he was shooting so well from the college Three. Look at that form on the jumper. That is great form for a point guard, never mind a 6-9 power forward. Feet even, body straight up and down, left hand flat to steady the ball not shoot it, and look at the wrist.

I thought he was going to go lefty hook (2:07). He has that knack for getting into position to affect the Boards. Watch how high up and away from the basket he stops that ball (2:18). That looked like goal tending. But did you see him pick it up off the rim, double pump it, and dunk it. That is incredible (2:24). Very nice weapon on the right block shooting the ball through contact (2:32). He comes down the floor very late, which is a little worrisome, but then out hustles two guys for the loose ball (2:38). He practices and plays hard, which is often half the battle with guys with his size and talent.

He shows a little meanness here with the cheap shot. I don't like the cheap shot, but you have to be a little mean on the court to be great (3:07). Okay, did he just go around the back to his left. And that was more of a self pass than a shot (3:20). When you let him spin to the right from the left block he will destroy you. Watch how high up he gets on that righty hook. That is positively Al Jefferson like on the right hook from the left block (3:35). I would have liked to have seen more defense. But we got to see some toughness and meanness, which we needed to see. We already knew he had the shot, skill, and explosion.

Chriss Vs Long Beach:

Chriss Vs San Diego ST:

As rumors abound about Danny's fondness for Chriss, I am compelled to take one more look. The NIT Tournament was such a great thing for Chriss. We get to see him at the end of the year, after his full season as a freshman and the after the PAC 12 Tournament. He not only shot 50% from Three in his last four games, those last four games where in the PAC-12 Tournament and the NIT. So his best shooting was essentially in Playoff games. We can see that progress he made during the season. How his body has matured over the past year. How his game has matured over the past year, and hopefully how he has matured mentally over his freshman season. We know his skills have matured, because the Chad Ford stat of the week: "He averaged better than 20 points over his last four games while shooting 50 percent from 3." Though fifty percent from college Three usually translates to less than 40% from three as a rookie. But it does show that he could be a stretch four who can shoot 40% from Three. Plus, with his length and athleticism he will be more than a stretch four in the NBA. 

He is more than a stretch four, but watch the explosion off the ground on his jumper. That is just great (:08). He should have just Al Jefferson-ed that shot. But instead he gets fancy and missed it. But at least he drew the foul (:17). He gets position on the left block again. He was much better at drawing fouls in those four games than early in the season (:31). Being a stretch four is nice, but he is much more than that (:08). After taking two big hits on the left post. He gets the ball at the 3-point line where you'd think he'd just pop it. But watch this up fake, and the sudden shoulder fake to the right. Then the nice first step and one dribble left. Then he leaps up, but he has to twist back a little to free his right hand instead of shooting it lefty. But who cares, as he soars up and drops it in over two guys. Great shot. You can see he is a smart guy, and you have to be smart to affect winning in the NBA.

I think one of the reasons they put him on the left block is the back door lob. It is so fun to watch him grab that lob and dunk behind the defense (1:07). He is also so good at that trailing block. Which I think is why he can look so terrible with his feet on the ground in man defense. Because he over relies on the block, and likes to get in position to try and make the block from behind too much (1:21). He will still look like a 19 year old kid sometimes (1:44). He sooo needs to be on a fastbreak team. I believe the Danny rumors because Stevens has to look at Tape of him shooting Threes, and in the open court and get excited (1:52). Here he is trailing on the break. He is more than just a stretch four (2:12). He is great in the open court, and he can play some defense as well. He is still only 19-years old and as he gets bigger and stronger and adds consistency to his jumper he has a chance to be a hell of an NBA player.

Chriss Vs SDSU:



Jordan Mickey Bio:

2015-16 (Freshman): Started all 34 games and averaged 13.7 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.6 blocks… honorable mention Pac-12 All-Freshmen selection… reached double-figures in 24 of 34 games, including four 20 point efforts… had a stretch of 11-straight league games with double-figure scoring…career-high 29 points in the second game of the season against Mount St. Mary’s… was 11-of-18 from the field while adding 10 rebounds and two blocks… one of four double-doubles on the season… had 27 points and 11 rebounds in the first round of the NIT against Long Beach State… led the team in rebounding nine times and in scoring six times… finished fourth in all-time points by a freshman at UW with 467 and fifth in rebounds with 183… had 55 blocks, the most by any freshman in program history.

Pleasant Grove High School (Elk Grove, Calif.) – Was selected to play in the 2015 Ballislife All-American Game…Averaged 21.9 points, 11.6 rebounds and 3.1 blocks per game as a senior for Pleasant Grove ... Ranked the No. 49 player overall in the nation, No. 8 for his position and No. 3 in the state of California for a PF…as a junior, averaged 19.0 points, 11.7 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks per game.


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