While those players taken in the first round of the NBA draft justifiably got most of the attention, there seemed to be an inordinate number of college stars, such as DeJuan Blair who went in the second round. Which will make the biggest NBA impact? That's the question for this week's Monday Tip...[details]
HEADER CHASE BUDINGER Shooting Guard/Small Forward University of Arizona Wildcats #34 6:06.6-217 Encinitas, California La Costa Canyon High School
OVERVIEW Budinger's athletic ability makes his all-around game look effortless. A heralded recruit, he delivered on that promise by earning Pac-10 Conference Freshman-of-the-Year honors, followed by All-Pac-10 third-team and All-District first-team honors as a sophomore and league first-team accolades as a junior.
In three seasons at Arizona, Budinger averaged 17.0 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 100 career games (all starts). He connected in 46.9 percent of his field goal attempts as a Wildcat, including 38.3 percent from 3-point range. He became the 42nd player in UA history to score 1,000 career points and was just the sixth sophomore to accomplish the feat. His 1,675 total points rank 11th in school annals while his 188 3-point field goals rank sixth. His average of 35.4 minutes played per game is the second-highest mark in Arizona history, topped by only Jason Gardner (35.5 minutes per game, 1999-2003).
At La Costa Canyon High School, Budinger was regarded as one of the nation's top basketball and volleyball players, earning San Diego County Male Athlete of the Year honors from the San Diego Union-Tribune in both sports. He was rated the seventh-best overall prospect in the country and the second-best small forward by Bob Gibbons' All-Star Sports Top 100.
Budinger became the 14th player in school history to garner All-American honors (Parade and McDonald's). He finished third in the Long Beach Press-Telegram's "Best in the West" voting, leading the team to the CIF regional title as a senior. That year, he averaged 34.0 points, 11.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 3.0 steals per game. As a junior, he averaged 27.9 points and 12.5 rebounds.
Budinger was a three-time San Diego County volleyball Player of the Year and the 2006 Mizuno national volleyball Player of the Year. As an outside hitter, he helped the Mavericks win the San Diego section Division I championship for the third consecutive season, on the way to earning his third-straight Union-Tribune boys' volleyball Player of the Year honor. He was also a scholar athlete at La Costa Canyon.
In summer basketball competition, Budinger earned co-Most Valuable Player honors at the McDonald's 2006 High School All-America Basketball game, as he tallied 11 points (5-of-8 field goals), three rebounds, four assists and three steals in 21 minutes. He was also named the Most Valuable Player of the Nike Junior World Championships in Douai, France, in June 2006, where he averaged 28 points and eight rebounds per game as Team USA went 6-0.
Budinger signed his national letter-of-intent during the November early signing period, earning Pac-10 Conference Freshman of the Year honors in 2006-07. His 484 points scored represented the fifth-highest total for a freshman in school history, and in the Lute Olson era only Gilbert Arenas (523) and Sean Elliott (499) have tallied more (Jerryd Bayless scored 592 points in 2007-08, but Olson had taken a one year leave of absence).
Budinger led the team with 50 3-point field goals (136 attempts) and shot 36.8% from that range. He made 48.5% of his field goals and shot 84.5% from the foul line. He grabbed 179 rebounds (5.8 rebounds per game), as he totaled 62 assists, 34 steals and 13 blocked shots.
In 2007-08, Budinger was an All-Pac-10 Conference third-team and NABC All-District XV second-team pick. He ranked second on the team in scoring, averaging 17.1 points per game on 44.6% shooting from the field and 71.8% from the charity stripe. He increased his assists total from 62 the previous season to 99 (2.9 assists per game), adding 38 steals and six blocked shots.
After his sophomore season, Budinger decided to make himself eligible for the 2008 NBA Draft. But a few weeks before the draft, he decided that he needed more "grooming" and returned to the Wildcats for the 2008-09 campaign.
Budinger was selected All-Pac-10 Conference first-team by the league's coaches. He added All-District honors, as he registered at least 20 points in 16 of the 35 games he started, scoring in double figures a total of 31 times. He averaged 18.0 points per game on 48.0% shooting from the field, including 39.9% from 3-point range. He grabbed a career-high 217 rebounds (6.2 rebounds per game) and handed out 118 assists (3.4 assists per game).
Budinger forfeited his remaining college eligibility by again declaring for the NBA Draft in April. He is not eligible to return to school because he declared for the draft a second time.
2008-09 SEASON First-team All-Pac-10 Conference selection by the league's coaches...Added All-District IX honors from the USBWA and second-team All-District 20 recognition from the National Association of Basketball Coaches...Posted season bests in nearly every statistical category as a junior, including field goals (219), free throws (125), free throw attempts (156), rebounds (217), assists (118), steals (50), points scored (630) and scoring average... His 1,317 minutes played in 2008-09 are the most in school history for a single season, while his scoring tally equaled the 11th-best figure in UA annals...Averaged 18.0 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game in 35 appearances...Shot 48.0 percent (219-of-456) from the field and 39.9 percent (67-of-168) from 3-point range...Ranked among the Pac-10 leaders in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals (1.4 per game), free throw percentage (.801), 3-point field goals made (1.9 per game), assist/turnover ratio (1.4:1) and minutes played (37.6)...Finished in double figures 31 times this year, including 16 20-point games...Averaged 19.0 points and 5.0 rebounds while shooting 56.1 percent (23-of-41) from the field during Arizona's three-game NCAA Tournament run...Had 85 turnovers and 65 personal fouls.
2007-08 SEASON All-Pac-10 Conference third-team choice, adding All-District XV honors from the National Association of Basketball Coaches...Started all 34 games, ranking second on the team in scoring with 583 points (17.1 per game), as he shot 44.6% (204-of-457) from the field and led the team with 73 3-point field goals (.380 percentage) and 1,200 minutes played...Made 102-of-142 free throws (71.8%) and pulled down 184 rebounds (5.4 per game), including 34 off the offensive glass...Credited with 99 assists (2.9 per game), six blocked shots and 38 steals (1.1 per game)...Posted a team-leading 29 double-figure scoring games and registered one double-double...Fouled out of two games, as he had 66 personal fouls and 80 turnovers.
2006-07 SEASON Second-team Freshman All-American selection by Rivals.com and Collegehoops.net...All-District XV second-team choice by the NABC...Became the fifth Wildcat to earn Pac-10 Conference Freshman of the Year honors...One of just nine freshmen to score over 400 points in Arizona annals, as his 484 points rank fifth on the school season-record list for first-year players...Ranked seventh in the league with a 15.6-point scoring average, as he shot 48.5% from the field (176-of-363), 36.8% from 3-point range (50-of-136) and 84.5% from the charity stripe (82-of-97)...Collected 179 rebounds (5.8 per game) with 62 assists (2.0 per game), 34 steals (1.1 per game) and 13 blocked shots...Turned the ball over 49 times.
CAREER NOTES Budinger started all 100 games he played in for the Wildcats...His average of 35.4 minutes played per game rank second in school history behind Jason Gardner (35.5 per game, 4,825 minutes total, 1999-2003)...Became the 42nd player in school history to score over 1,000 points (1,067), accomplishing that feat as a sophomore...Closed out his career with 1,697 points (17.0 points per game), ranking 11th in school history...Successful on 599-of-1,276 field goal attempts (attempts rank ninth in UA annals), finishing with a .469 percentage... Connected on 190-of-486 3-point tries (38.3%), as his 190 treys rank sixth on the school career-record list behind Salim Stoudamire (342, 2001-05), Jason Gardner (318, 1999-2003), Damon Stoudamire (272, 1992-95), Jason Terry (193, 1996-99) and Matt Othick (191, 1989-92)...His 486 3-point attempts rank fifth among Wildcats, topped by Gardner (875), Salim Stoudamire (747), Damon Stoudamire (677) and Jason Terry (514)...His 484 points scored in 2006-07 was the fifth-highest total in a season by an Arizona freshman... Grabbed 580 rebounds (5.8 rebounds per game), as he handed out 279 assists (2.8 per game), added 122 steals (1.2 per game) and blocked 35 shots (0.4 per game).
HIGH SCHOOL Attended La Costa Canyon (Cal.) High School, playing basketball for head coach Dave Cassaw...Regarded as one of the nation's top basketball and volleyball players, earning San Diego County Male Athlete of the Year honors from the San Diego Union-Tribune in both sports...Rated the seventh-best overall prospect in the country and the second-best small forward by Bob Gibbons' All-Star Sports Top 100...Became the 14th player in school history to garner All-American honors (Parade and McDonald's)...Finished third in the Long Beach Press-Telegram's "Best in the West" voting, leading the team to the CIF regional title as a senior...That year, he averaged 34.0 points, 11.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 3.0 steals per game...As a junior, he averaged 27.9 points and 12.5 rebounds...Three-time San Diego County volleyball Player of the Year and the 2006 Mizuno national volley-ball Player of the Year...As an outside hitter, he helped the Mavericks win the San Diego section Division I championship for the third consecutive season, on the way to earning his third-straight Union-Tribune boys' volleyball Player of the Year honor...Was also a scholar athlete at La Costa Canyon.
INJURY REPORT No injuries reported.
OTHER TOURNAMENTS/TEAMS SUMMER: Budinger earned co-Most Valuable Player honors at the McDonald's 2006 High School All-America Basketball game, as he tallied 11 points (5-of-8 field goals), three rebounds, four assists and three steals in 21 minutes...Named the Most Valuable Player of the Nike Junior World Championships in Douai, France, in June 2006, where he averaged 28 points and eight rebounds per game as Team USA went 6-0.
PERSONAL Business major...Born 5/22/88...Resides in Encinitas, California.
SCOUTING REPORT Positives: Has good length, wingspan and athleticism, but is more suited for the two-guard spot...Gets excellent elevation and is explosive getting off his feet and into the air, where he can hang a long time until he gets to the rim...When he elevates for the putback or rebound, he shows soft hands to secure the ball...Finishes well in transition and has a nice "bag of tricks" (hesitation moves, shoulder dip, pump fakes) to force the defender to commit too early...Good slasher taking the ball to the basket from the perimeter vs. wing players and two-guards with the initial step to fly past his man off the bounce and angle his way to the basket after gaining separation...Has become much more comfortable from the perimeter and has NBA-caliber 3-point range...More suited for the up-tempo game with some space on the floor to operate in dribble-drive situations rather than in a half-court situation when he's forced to create...Uses his body well to set up screens...Accurate shooting on the move, as he likes to catch and quickly take his shot while drifting away from the goal...Has a knack for getting open to take his shot behind the arc when playing from the weak side...Times leaps well going for the rebound has the upper-body strength to maintain position and prevent bigger wing players from boxing him out...Not the type that will force his shot, and knows how to scan the court to locate an open teammate...Too smart and instinctive to bite on a shooter's moves at the perimeter...Shows the body control to adjust when a defender faces up to him and is versatile enough to finish with either hand...Has the vision to slip through a crowd in the lane, using his sharp cutting ability to get to the rim for a smooth put-in...Has a good understanding for positioning when playing along the perimeter, and can juke the defender off the dribble...Developing better range shooting from the outside, correcting a slight hitch in his release...As a junior, he had a higher release point and a smoother stroke on his jump shot...Takes good angles to the basket, knowing how to draw contact along the way to get to the foul line...Sets his feet well to pull up and put in a shot from the top of the key... When playing in the half-court game, he does a good job of making off-balance shots in traffic or fading back to uncork a pull-up jumper...Has the natural ability to be a solid defender with great reach and elevation, along with good timing to stay in front of his man.
Negatives: His biggest weakness is on the defensive end where he has just decent lateral quickness, not enough to handle quicker NBA guards...Has adequate strength, but needs to add more power to his game to avoid being pushed out of the paint in the NBA...Has some stiffness in his hips which also comes into play when trying to fight off screens (the shooter can easily beat him off the dribble)...Until he improves his overall power base, his in-between game will remain inconsistent...With a player that displays the elevation Budinger does, it is alarming that he fails to block shots (13 as a freshman, six as a sophomore and 16 as a junior)...Part of his problem defending vs. perimeter shooters is that he fails to stay down in his stance...Needs to play with better control on the defensive end, as he will out-run the play, leaving his man open to take uncontested shots...Lacks the skills to create his own shot coming off the dribble (tends to rush his shot and fails to set his feet)...Needs to show more aggressiveness in the lane and guard against sitting back and firing mid-range jump shots... Because of his hesitation in going to the rim through traffic, he is not the type that can easily convert on isolation plays...Easily gets up and down the floor, but doesn't easily separate from defenders.
Compares To: BRENT BARRY, Houston -- Budinger is an emerging talent on the offensive end, with good size and perimeter shooting. He has the quickness to beat wing players to the basket and shows a nice touch finishing at the rim. His lack of ideal strength disqualifies him from playing small forward at the next level and his defensive skills have yet to emerge. He struggles to shoot off the dribble and when he gets bounced out of the paint, he will just park along the perimeter rather than aggressively fight back to draw contact. He looks too stiff in his hips to rotate well on defense, especially when assigned to cover "2" guards. He will have to add more upper-body strength to play at the next level and show more desire on defense, especially using his leaping ability to block shots. Without more emphasis on aggressively attacking the rim and improving his defense, he will be nothing more than another Keith Van Horn.