The independent news organization of Duke University

Duke men's basketball 2018-19 player preview: Cam Reddish

<p>Cam Reddish will be asked to play numerous roles for the Blue Devils.</p>

Cam Reddish will be asked to play numerous roles for the Blue Devils.

Cam Reddish 

  • Year: Freshman 
  • Height: 6-foot-8 
  • Position: Forward 
  • Last year’s statline: N/A 

Game Breakdown: There is a reason Reddish is coming into Durham as the No. 3 overall recruit in his class, behind only teammates R.J. Barrett and Zion Williamson. The Norristown, Pa. native is an elite scorer, both one-on-one and catch-and-shoot, and is terrific at drawing fouls and getting to the free-throw line. Furthermore, the McDonald’s All-American has the physical tools to defend virtually anyone in the country. Overall, many scouts actually label Reddish as having the most pure basketball talent out of Duke’s top three freshmen, but with that talent comes causes of concern as well. 

One of the biggest worries for Reddish this upcoming season will be his effort level, both on the offensive and defensive ends. While Pennsylvania's Mr. Basketball may be just as skilled as Barrett and Williamson, he often lacks the fire that his freshmen counterparts bring on the court. That may just be a difference in personality, but it’s something to note nonetheless.

Other weaknesses that surround Reddish’s game include a streaky three-point shot and a tendency to settle for bad looks. In addition, despite getting to the line 20 times over the Blue Devils’ two exhibition contests, the star forward made only 12, a percentage he must improve upon.

Role on the Team: On nearly every other team in the country, Reddish would be the No. 1 guy on offense—the alpha dog. But in Durham lie the only two players who could possibly take that status away from him in Barrett and Williamson. Now, the Westtown School product is an awkward third option, with many questioning how he will fit into the Blue Devils’ offense this season.

With Barrett, Williamson and point guard Tre Jones commanding the ball, Reddish is going to need to adapt to off-ball scoring far more than he’s done in the past. That means constantly cutting around screens and becoming the team’s premium catch-and-shoot threat. Likely the best outside shooter out of Duke’s freshman starters, Reddish’s ability to spread the floor and sink open looks will be essential in clearing up the lane for his teammates. 

When Jones isn’t on the floor, however, Reddish will also serve as the Blue Devils’ primary playmaker, running Duke’s offense and finding good shot opportunities for Barrett, Williamson and company. The First-Team All-State recipient last year already showed he’s capable of this during the preseason, recording 12 assists over the Blue Devils’ two exhibition wins.

NBA Comparison: Reddish is a guard in a forward’s body, an elite isolation scorer with a streaky outside stroke. Who does that remind you of? How about San Antonio Spurs shooting guard DeMar DeRozan.

DeRozan is one of the top scorers in the NBA, averaging 23 points per game last season. Furthermore, the Compton, Calif. native is one of the league’s top playmaking wings with an average of 5.2 assists per contest, good for third among shooting guards in 2017-18.

Both Reddish—at 6-foot-8 and 220 pounds—and DeRozan—6-foot-7 and 218 pounds—are also very similar in size, using their height to shoot over smaller shooting guards and quickness to blow past larger forwards.

Projected Stats: 13.6 PPG, 4.4 APG, 4.8 RPG


Share and discuss “Duke men's basketball 2018-19 player preview: Cam Reddish” on social media.