SALT LAKE CITY, UT – FEBRUARY 10: Matisse Thybulle #4 of the Washington Huskies controls the ball against the Utah Utes at the Jon M. Huntsman Center on February 10, 2016 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images)

Matisse Thybulle is being projected as a late first to an early second round pick by most draft experts. Thybulle enters the 2019 NBA Draft hoping a team like the San Antonio Spurs or perhaps the Cleveland Cavaliers will grab him late in the first round.

Career at the University of Washington

Matisse Thybulle came into Washington as a solidly ranked recruit according to 247 sports, and he showed why throughout his career. Thybulle endured a putrid start to his career as a Washington Huskie in terms of wins and losses. Through his first two seasons at Washington, they had a combined record of 28-37. Things turned around over his final two seasons after a coaching change, the Huskies had a combined record of 48-22.

Thybulle was a defensive stalwart in his four seasons at Washington. He earned two PAC-12 conference defensive player of the year awards and was named to the 2018-2019 All PAC-12 first team. While his offensive stats may not wow you, he did a little bit of everything at Washington. For his career, Thybulle started 134 of 135 games and averaged 9.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, 2.0 assists, while shooting a solid 35.8 percent from three. He also averaged 2.5 steals and 1.4 blocks for his career.

Strengths

Matisse Thybulle is the best perimeter defender in the 2019 NBA Draft. He is long (seven-foot wingspan), he is quick, and he has fantastic defensive instincts. Thybulle is a world-class defender. His defensive ability is the reason why he has a chance to go in the first round.

Offensively, Thybulle does a few things solidly. He is pretty solid at scoring off the dribble. Although he only shot 30.5 percent from three in his final season, he was a solid three-point shooter throughout his career. He shot the three ball at 35.8 percent for his career on four attempts per game.

Weaknesses

For all he excels at on the defensive end, Thybulle is a work in progress on the offensive end. It is concerning that he shot it so poorly from three in his final season after three pretty good shooting years. Thybulle is an excellent free throw shooter but struggles to get to the line, often times avoiding contact rather than seeking it out. For as long and athletic as he is, he doesn’t rebound the basketball very well as he only averaged 3.1 rebounds per game for his career. He can be a bit careless with the basketball at times also.

Player Comparison

Mattise Thybulle is nearly an identical player coming out of college to that of Oklahoma City Thunder wing Andre Roberson. Roberson and Thybulle are both defensive machines who don’t produce a lot on the offensive end. Thybulle has more potential offensively than Roberson, and there is some precedent there as Thybulle was never below 36 percent from three through his first three seasons at Washington.

Draft Projection

Late First Round

The Cleveland Cavaliers and San Antonio Spurs both have a second first round pick, late. The Cavaliers could use a lock-down defender as they were one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA last season. Thybulle is the definition of what the San Antonio Spurs look for in a player. He defends like crazy and plays with high energy. Thybulle will be able to come in day one and be a contributor on the defensive end of the floor, so he will find himself in the rotation.

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