Both Jabari Parker and Carmelo Anthony garnered headlines as college freshmen.
Parker was on the cover of Sports Illustrated twice before finishing his freshman season at Duke and is expected to be a top pick in the NBA draft.
Anthony led Syracuse to the 2003 NCAA title as a freshman, receiving the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award and a consensus second team All-American selection.
On the court, Jabari Parker and Carmelo Anthony were almost identical as freshmen.
The best way to compare the freshmen stats between Jabari and Carmelo is on a Per-40 minute basis to evaluate per-minute productivity. Data is taken from Sports-Reference.com.
#1) Height and Weight: 100% Similar (6’8″, 235 Pounds)
ESPN lists both Parker and Anthony at exactly 6’8″ and 235 pounds. They share the same body type and athleticism, making both of them a matchup nightmare. Their height and strength make them too big for most wing players to guard, but their explosiveness on the perimeter make them almost impossible for a big man to defend.
#2) Field Goals Made Per-40 Minutes: 99% Similar (8.8 vs. 8.7)
On a per-40 minute basis, Jabari made 8.8 field goals as a freshman at Duke compared to Carmelo’s 8.7 field goals in his only season at Syracuse. Not only did they put the ball through the hole at a nearly identical clip, they both also attempted a similar amount of shots per-40 minutes at 19.2 for Carmelo and 18.8 for Jabari.
#3) Points Per-40 Minutes: 98% Similar (25.0 vs. 24.4)
With such similar field goals made per-40 minutes (8.8 vs. 8.7), it is not too surprising to see Parker and Anthony were nearly identical in how often they scored while on the court. On a per-40 minute basis, Parker’s 25.0 points just edged out Anthony’s average of 24.4.
#4) 2-Point Field Goal Percentage: 98% Similar (50.4% vs. 49.6%)
If we were to round to the nearest whole number, both Parker and Anthony shot 50% on 2-point field goals as freshmen, though Parker’s 50.4% was slightly better than Anthony’s 49.6%. When it came to overall field goal percentage, including 3-pointers, Jabari’s 47.3% was also better than Carmelo’s 45.3%.
#5) Rebounds Per-40 Minutes: 96% Similar (11.4 vs. 11.0)
While both Jabari and Carmelo are both predominantly wing players, they were each very effective rebounders as freshmen. On a per-40 minute basis, Parker once again performed slightly better with his 11.4 rebounds just bettering Anthony’s 11.0.
Carmelo Anthony is now one of the NBA’s best players with the New York Knicks. He is consistently among the NBA’s top scorers and has been names an All-Star in seven of his last eight seasons.
Based on their freshmen stats, this bodes well for Jabari Parker and the team that drafts him.
While there are no guarantees how college performance will translate to the NBA, the Jabari-Carmelo connection is as close to 100% as it gets.