NBA players are all tall when compared to the regular population, and the league is getting larger over time. Even so, that doesn’t mean an athlete needs to be exceptionally tall to succeed. In fact, many modern players excel without towering over their competition.
One such example of that is Devin Booker. In the following sections, I will look at Devin Booker’s height to give a better idea of, not just recent shifting trends in the NBA, but how he manages to be a superstar without a particularly huge frame.
A Recent Shift
In today’s NBA, there’s no doubt that bigger is better. Most top players in the league are athletes who figured out how to remain agile and quick despite their big frame. Jokic, Giannis, and Doncic are all examples of that.
If a player is able to out-muscle their opponent without losing a step they have a leg up. That’s true at every position, but it’s especially apparent on the wing. If a center is a few inches bigger, it’s not as big of a deal as if a point or shooting guard has a clear height advantage.
That’s a big reason why all outside NBA positions are much taller than they were a few years ago. Going up in both height and weight without sacrificing any speed is an advantage that’s hard to copy. Still, it’s possible to succeed without falling into that trend.
Toeing the Line
Devin Booker is one of the top players in the league. Despite that, he’s not tall for his position. In fact, he’s pretty average. The Suns sharpshooter stands right at 6’5 (196cm). That’s a hair above the mean for NBA shooting guards (6’4) and right below the average for shooting guards (6’7).
That means, depending on his position in any given game, he’s either average or below average height. He does have a large wingspan (6’8), but it’s not so large that it would put him far above any other player. His weight (206) isn’t particularly impressive either.
What is impressive, however, is that despite his dimensions he remains one of the best players on one of the best teams in the entire NBA.
A Quick Cutter
Analyzing Booker’s height is important because it informs the way he plays the game. The outside shooter is not short by any means, but he doesn’t have the edge you see in so many other franchise leaders.
Rather than being someone who plays bully ball or who constantly pushes against their opponent, Booker relies on his natural quickness and court vision to properly play.
He’s a knock-down outside shooter with slick handles and a knack for the game. All of those traits combine to create a crafty shooting guard who not only can pull up from distance when needed, but who knows how to always make the right basketball play.
That’s a common trait in smaller NBA players, and it’s something Booker exemplifies each and every night. He’s never going to go through his competition. Rather, he’ll find a way around them. If he can’t do that, he’ll drive in, cut, or find the open man.
Height is useful in the NBA, but, as Devin Booker shows, it’s not everything. There are quite a few top players who aren’t especially large or tall. Rather, they utilize craftiness, speed, quickness, and IQ to get the job done.
Booker is a finesse player through and through. Part of that is a result of his ability to shoot, and part of that is how he sees the floor. Either way, he shows that there are still a few ways to make a name for yourself in today’s NBA.