Reason No. 1 Bates will blossom: His scoring ability
Despite his low draft position, Bates is one of the best raw scorers in this year’s draft. In a game against Toledo this year, Bates finished with 43 points on 15-of-23 shooting and 9-of-14 from three-point range. During that 43-point game, Bates had a stretch of 29 straight points. I don’t care what the competition is like, that is uber-efficient and impressive.
Additionally, Bates had 12 games where he scored over 20 points this season, and 25 games with double-digit points. Bates also showed up against top competition, as in games against Michigan, South Carolina, Florida Atlantic, and Kent State he had 30, 19, 36, and 24 points respectively. While it is a limited sample size, it shows that Bates was able to shine against good college programs.
Bates did have some bad shooting games and sometimes had poor shot selection, but he has a knack for scoring the ball and getting to his spot. Young players have the tendency to have lower IQ when it comes to shot selection and that bad habit usually goes away as the player matures and gains more experience.
The bottom line is that Bates’s raw scoring ability is going to take him a long way and he could become a go-to scorer off the bench for the Cavs.