Wisconsin Herd: A deep dive into new Herd player Vince Hunter

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 16: (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 16: (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Wisconsin Herd made Vince Hunter their first expansion draft pick. Here’s why.

Vince Hunter is probably not a name many Milwaukee Bucks or Wisconsin Herd fans are familiar with. Hunter has gotten looks from multiple NBA teams before the last two regular seasons, but he has yet to play a minute in the Association, or be on a roster once the season starts.

He’s played overseas, both in Greece and in Russia, and also played half of a season in the NBA G League (back in 2015-16 when it was known as the D-League). He’s also recently played in Summer League, averaging 16.3 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.3 blocks in less than 24 minutes per game with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

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That information is nice, but Herd fans likely want to know more about the guy who might be their best player in the team’s inaugural season. So let’s start from the beginning. Hunter declared for the NBA Draft after his sophomore season at UTEP, and went undrafted in 2015.

From there he started the season in the G League, and had an All-Star season despite playing just 32 games. He averaged 21.8 points, 11.3 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.5 blocks per game with the Reno Bighorns.

From there Hunter bolted for Greece. where he played for various teams and had an overall quiet season, scoring a combined average of just 5.7 points per game. He spent last season in Russia playing for Avtodor Saratov, and finding more success, averaging 14.7 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 1.4 steals, and 1.3 blocks in 26 minutes per game.

After a few Summer League stops this summer, Hunter is now expected to join the Herd for at least the beginning portion of this season. Now that we’ve seen the numbers, let’s look at what it is Hunter does to put up his stats.

It’s obvious from the above video (and others on YouTube) that Hunter is a relentless driver on offense. He attacks the basket and finds–or makes–space so he can get to the rim, where his next-level athleticism allows him to convert more often than not.

Hunter stands around 6’7″, but he’s extremely lengthy, with a 6’11” wingspan. Look for him to play as a sort of G League Giannis Antetokounmpo–relentless drives and terrifying fast breaks on offense, and turnovers created on the other end thanks to his length he uses to block shots and intercept passes.

Like Giannis, Hunter is not much of a three-point shooter. He’s had a few spells of nice-looking percentages from deep, but universally across NBA Summer League, NCAA, G League and International ball he’s never taken a high volume of shots from deep.

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This past Summer League is a good example. Hunter shot an incredible 62.5 percent from three-point territory across his tenure with the two teams he played for, but just eight of his 66 total shots came from beyond the arc.

A more realistic comparison for Hunter–with a slightly more accurate height–is Michael Beasley. It seems like Hunter could end up being a more focused defender than Beas, but they both excel at just flat-out getting buckets, especially around the rim.

If Vince Hunter does join the Wisconsin Herd, it’s more likely than not that he’ll end up leading the team in scoring. Bronson Koenig and Jalen Moore might have the coveted two-way contracts, but Hunter is a polished player with professional experience.

Next: Getting to know the 11 Herd expansion draft picks

He’s ready for another shot at the NBA, and Herd fans will be happy he’s shooting his shot in Wisconsin.