February 11, 2023
Locked on Women’s Basketball: Stanford’s Haley Jones is most polarizing prospect in 2023 WNBA Draft
'Anyone can look at her and get a different sort of impression of what direction they want her to go in'
The latest episode of Locked on Women’s Basketball continues our series of scouting reports on the top 2023 WNBA Draft prospects! In today’s episode, co-hosts Hunter Cruse and Em Adler discuss Stanford wing/forward Haley Jones. (Note: Because of the video footage in this episode, we recommend watching it on YouTube rather than listening to it as a podcast.)
Jones is 6’1 and was a consensus All-American last season and the NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player in 2021. This season, she is averaging 13.8 points, 9.1 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 0.8 steals and 0.7 blocks per game and shooting 49.6% on 2-pointers.
Em gives an overview of Jones’ offensive skills and tendencies:
“She gets to the rim more than most forwards in the country. She gets into the paint really well; she finishes really well from the paint overall. But she’s about average at finishing at the rim, which to be clear is kind of an improvement over yesteryears. In terms of her shot profile, she spent a couple of years taking some threes. She basically doesn’t take them anymore, and she really could never hit them efficiently. … She really really loves going right to left on pick-and-rolls, on drives, on really anything there. She can finish with either hand pretty well. She’s very athletic; she’ll finish through contact. … [She] sort of defies positional boundaries.”
Em dives deeper into why WNBA scouts are likely divided on what Jones could be in the WNBA and even what position she’ll play:
“If the shot improves, then you have someone who can really be sort of a combo utility wing, but being excellent defensively at the same time. If you turn up her athleticism a little bit, if you think for some reason you can get her faster with conditioning at the next level, then I think that’s the key to being able to play her at the one …
“Anyone can look at her and get a different sort of impression of what direction they want her to go in. And the problem is that I think if you improve any one of those skills that I just mentioned, then she develops into someone who is a really valuable role player, really valuable, but also all the skills we just mentioned are ones which we would have expected to improve by now.”
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Here at The Next, in addition to the 24/7/365 written content our staff provides, we also host the daily Locked On Women’s Basketball podcast. Join us Monday through Saturday each week as we discuss all things WNBA, collegiate basketball, basketball history and much more. Listen wherever you find podcasts or watch on YouTube.