Weight: 224 pounds
Position: Center/Power Forward
Even though he is undersized for a center, Jordan Bell impacts the game in a number of ways, but most notably on the defensive end. Bell uses his outstanding athleticism, high motor, and excellent timing to toss away shots and alter the ones he can’t get to.
Bell’s defensive capabilities aren’t solely limited to the paint as he possesses the lateral quickness to switch on to guards and hold his own on the perimeter. In this day and age, bigs who can switch on the pick-and-roll and keep up with guards are very necessary, and that is where Bell will shine.
Bell is also an excellent rebounder thanks to his constant activity and pure effort. He especially excels on the offensive glass where he averaged nearly three per night. He had at least 12 rebounds in each of Oregon’s five NCAA Tournament games and his 11-point, 13-rebound, eight-block performance against Kansas in the Elite 8 was one of the best of any player in all of March Madness.
Offensively Bell isn’t the most skilled player, but he understands his limitations and plays within himself. He is a good finisher at the rim thanks to that athleticism and gets a lot of his baskets in transition simply by beating his man down the floor. He is also a decent passer, showing the ability to make good decisions on the move and find open shooters or cutters.
Bell lacks ideal size for the center position, which is likely his best spot based on his skill-set. It would help if he had an outstanding wingspan to make up for it, but it is only 7’0 which is good, but not enough to make up for his height.
For the most part, his offensive skill set is very basic. He has no real advanced post moves and doesn’t really create much offense for himself. Though he has made improvements, he is not someone who you can throw the ball to in the post and expect a basket. He also turns the ball over far too much for someone who doesn’t have the ball in his hands a lot.
He does have a tendency to rely too much on his athleticism on the boards at times, failing to box out his man. He could also stand to add a little more strength to his frame. He is definitely a strong player, but some of the bigger centers will likely be able to push him around.
Player Comparison: Tarik Black
Tarik Black went undrafted but has carved out a role for himself with the Lakers because of his athleticism and high motor, despite being an undersized center.
Bell will definitely hear his name called at the draft, but his role in the league will be very similar. Bell won’t be counted on to be an offensive force, but his impact will be made on the glass and defensive end thanks to his never-ending motor and outstanding athleticism. Black is a little stronger while Bell is slightly quicker, but their games remain similar as is their lack of ideal height.
Black has worked hard to improve his offensive skills, and Bell will need to do the same, but at the very least he will be an energy big off the bench with the potential for more.
Fit With the Lakers
Neither Tarik Black or Thomas Robinson is a guarantee to be on the Lakers roster next season as Robinson is a free agent and Black’s contract is non-guaranteed. Bell could step right into their role as an energy big man off the bench and would arguably be the Lakers’ best rim protector immediately.
The biggest concern for the Lakers moving is forward is the lack of defenders on the roster and Bell would certainly help on that end. He is a competitor, a rim protector and can switch out on guards, something no other Lakers big is capable of right now.
His speed and ability to run the floor also mesh well with the Lakers desire to get up and down the floor. A team can never have too many guys who play hard every night and take pride on the defensive end.