Donovan Clingan: NBA Draft scouting report and intel

2004 | 7’2 | 7’7 WS | 280 LBS

Team: Connecticut

Best aggregate mock draft rank: 7 / Worst rank: 19

2023-24 stats:

In the 2023-24 season, Clingan played 33 games averaging 22.1 minutes per game. He scored 12.9 points per game, shooting 64.3 percent from the field, 28.6 percent from three, and 57.4 percent from the free-throw line. Additionally, he recorded 7.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 2.5 blocks, 0.5 steals, 2.0 personal fouls, and 0.8 turnovers per game.

His late mother, Stacey Clingan, played college basketball for the University of Maine.


* NBA-ready shot blocker with strong rebounding abilities

* Efficient scorer around the rim, skilled in various finishing techniques

* Capable passer from the elbow and in DHO situations

* Runs the floor well and actively seeks to make winning plays

* Enormous frame makes it difficult to shoot over and avoids in the paint

* Displays potential as a high-level shot blocker, alters many shots around the rim

* Improved at not fouling as much, stays on the court longer

* Solid weak-side defender with good drop coverage skills

* Ideal rim protector with potential to be one of the best shot blockers and post defenders in the league

* Great footwork in the paint, particularly as a rim protector

* High floor as a serviceable defensive-rebounding center

* Ideal rim protector with potential to be elite in shot blocking and post defense

* Improved at avoiding fouls but still prone to foul trouble

* Limited offensive capabilities but high floor as a defensive-rebounding center


* Lack of athleticism and toughness at times

*Durability and stamina concerns, limited minutes in games due to injuries

*Lacks lateral quickness and struggles against quicker guards in pick-and-roll situations

*Limited offensive game outside the paint, poor free-throw shooter

*No range outside of the paint and struggles with foul shooting

Scotto's draft notes:

“I watched Clingan the other day before a game, and he got his shots up and made a fair share of them, but it looks like he’s been instructed not to take that shot,” an NBA executive told HoopsHype. “Coach Hurley and UConn have been successful with that formula. They have a lot of talented perimeter players to take those shots versus Clingan. They let him do what he does best, which is set screens and roll to the basket, and do all his damage at the rim, and get offensive rebounds and take advantage of his massive size. You can’t argue with success.”

“Clingan can potentially be a player like Ivica Zubac where if he puts on a lot of strength and muscle, it’ll be hard to score at the rim on him,” another NBA executive told HoopsHype. “You see a little bit of it with Walker Kessler, who’s a more athletic specimen. Clingan can still be somewhat of a lob threat and put pressure on the rim. There’s stuff there with him on both ends that can be impactful. He moves relatively well going north to south. If he puts a hand out there on defense, I think you can switch him out there if there’s five seconds left on the clock. I would more likely play him in a drop defensive coverage. I wouldn’t classify him as a stiff out there.”

“Clingan can pass a little bit,” an NBA scout told HoopsHype. “I saw him shooting in warmups, and he was shooting threes and showed some touch. He doesn’t shoot threes at UConn. Now, if he brings that element to the NBA, you’re talking about a different kind of player. He’s not overly athletic. His feet are slow, and he’s not mobile enough to guard pick-and-roll sets and being able to drop back and not allow the roll man to get behind him. He’s 7-foot-2, so he’ll definitely be able to block shots, though.”

Excerpts from HoopsHype’s Aggregate Mock Draft from colleague Michael Scotto, who contributed research to this story, can be found here.

Story originally appeared on HoopsHype