**This is the second player that is being graded based on their season performance with the Philadelphia 76ers. Players already graded are: Tony Wroten.
Hollis Thompson finished his college career in 2012 after three years at Georgetown University. Like most basketball players he dreamed of one day playing in the NBA however when June 2012 rolled around and draft night was here; Hollis was not selected with any of the 60 picks available.
Thus, he spent the 2012-13 season playing for the D-League’s Tulsa 66ers where he played in 48 games and started 10 — not bad for an undrafted prospect.
Thompson hit the jackpot this year as the Sixers went into full-fledged rebuild mode and he finally got his chance at the big show. Hollis played in 77 games and started 41 of those games as well. He got himself a hefty pay raise as he went from making $25,000 last year to earning a cool $816,482 for his services this year with the Sixers — Hollis is signed through the 2016-17 season; however, none of the future years are guaranteed.
Some take an opportunity like this and flourish from day one — Hollis was not one of those guys. It was clear from the start of the season that there would be a learning curve for Thompson, however the league can almost always find a spot for a 6’8″ guy who can shoot the basketball, just ask James Jones. Thompson ended the season averaging 22.6 minutes, 6.0 points and 3.2 rebounds per night — nothing that will get your blood pumpin’.
The thing that stood out for this young guy is that he can shoot the rock. He finished the season shooting 46.0 percent from the field, 40.1 percent from 3-point land and 71.2 percent from the free throw line — the free throw percentage leaves something to be desired but the efficiency from the field is encouraging. The Sixers have made it known that they are looking for a wing or wings in this year’s draft so Hollis’ starting spot is by no means safe, but maybe that will light a fire in him and get him to be more aggressive.
We’ve seen that Hollis can shoot, however he only took 4.8 shots per game; tough to make a huge impact when you’re not using your biggest skill. Thompson has shown that he could possibly be a rotational guy in the coming seasons, but again he needs to assert himself and show off that nice jumper he’s got. His true shooting percentage (a measure that takes field goals, 3-point field goals and free throws into account) sits at 57.0 percent which is pretty good considering league average is around 53.9 percent.
Hollis has never been much of a scorer — he averaged 8.1 points in 48 D-League games and 8.7 points over his three years at GU — but some guys develop and blossom later than others so who knows what will come of Thompson. At the very least he should be able to carve out a niche as a James Jones type of player who can step in and help spread the floor with his propensity to hit the 3-ball.
Given the opportunity that was given and not really seized I would have to say that Hollis’ debut season was a bit of a letdown, but that doesn’t mean it’s all downhill from here. That aspect is up to him, and maybe he will flourish with more talented players around him as well — the Sixers are hoping to bring in a ton of talent via the draft in June.