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adidas Nations Scouting Reports: Center Prospects
by: Jonathan Givony - President, Mike Schmitz
August 13, 2015
Scouting reports on six of the top center prospects seen at the 2015 adidas Global Nations, including Jarrett Allen, Ike Anigbogu, Udoka Azubuike, DeRon Davis, James Banks and Taruike Jianiyou.
More adidas Nations Content:
-Power Forward Prospects
-Wing Prospect Scouting Reports
-Point Guard Prospect Scouting Reports
-Markelle Fultz Interview
-Dennis Smith Interview
-Kobe Paras Interview
-Tim Quarterman Interview

Jarrett Allen, 6'10, Austin, TX, 2016 High School Class

Mike Schmitz

Strengths:
-Really good frame. Extremely long arms. Huge hands.
-Can get up and down. Smooth athlete who is quick off his feet and can play above the rim. Long strides. Surprises you at times with how explosive he is
-Active, competitive, player with a good feel for the game.
-Has the tools to be a very good rebounder. Career 11.5 per-40
-Crashes the offensive glass. Career 4.1 per-40
-Able to rebound in traffic on the defensive end thanks to his length and leaping ability. Career 7.5 per-40
-Will fly around on defense at times. Chase down blocks. Can alter shots at the rim a little bit. Career 2.9 blocks and 1.5 steals per-40
-Has soft touch. Career 59% for 2
-Proficient scorer with back to the basket. Has a jump-hook with a high release point. Some footwork inside the paint. Good body control. Finishes on both sides of the rim and with either hand
-Smart player. Doesn't turn the ball over. Makes some heady outlet passes. Good teammate
-Just turned 17 a few months ago

Weaknesses:
-In between the 4 and the 5 right now. 6-10 in shoes, but plays primarily in the low post. Looks to be in an early stage of development athletically.
-Not a consistent threat offensively.
-Really funky shooting mechanics. Long windup and unorthodox release. Head tilted. Misses left and right. Career 57% free throw shooter
-Still figuring out what his limitations are. Will take contested jumpers early in the offense. Not completely sure what type of player he is yet.
-Effort comes and goes on defense. Sometimes looks like he's playing at half-speed. Still figuring out how to make the most of his tools on a consistent basis.
-Not the most physical player. Lacks a degree of toughness. Gives up deep post-position. Can get pushed around inside the paint.
-Doesn't move all that well on defense. Looks upright in stance. Gets burned off the dribble more than you'd hope. Average fundamentals. Needs to improve his ability to cover ground, especially stepping out on the pick and roll.

Outlook:
A late bloomer, Allen had an outstanding adidas Gauntlet circuit this summer, averaging 22 points per-40 on excellent efficiency (59% for 2). His performance this summer helped him up his stock into the 5-star territory among recruiting services, and made him a priority for the likes of Kentucky, Notre Dame, Texas, Baylor, North Carolina, Indiana and others. He isn't the most polished prospect but he sports an excellent frame, long arms, huge hands, and shows flashes of activity on both ends of the floor. It will be interesting to see what Allen's game looks like once it catches up to his impressive physical attributes. He lacks a degree of size, athleticism and toughness to be considered an elite-level NBA prospect, but appears to be at an early stage of development physically and skill-wise, so it's difficult to fully assess his upside at this stage.

Ike Anigbogu, 6'10, Centennial CA, Class of 2016
Jonathan Givony

Strengths:
-Tremendous frame. Very well proportioned
-Very long arms. Huge hands
-Extremely mobile. Runs floor extremely well. Doesn't need time or space to gather himself for strong finishes off two feet.
-Explosive finisher. Can throw down dunks from impressive vantage points. Attacks the rim ferociously
-Excellent offensive rebounder. Goes out of area with quickness, timing and length. Some impressive putback dunks
-Shows some touch around the basket at times. Has good hands. Will surprise you with an occasional spin-move inside the post. Not clueless offensively
-Plays hard
-Terrific rim protector. Career 4.9 blocks per-40
-Only 16 years old. Could easily be in the 2017 class. Excellent student reportedly

Weaknesses:
-Lacks a degree of height for a center. Listed at 6-9. Definitely closer to 6-10, possibly bigger. Length/athleticism/frame makes up for lack of size somewhat
-Skill-level is still evolving. Career 12 points per-40 scorer, on relatively low efficiency (49.6% 2P%)
-Footwork, post moves, counters, off hand, etc all need work
-Has very ugly shooting mechanics. Poor balance and footwork. Elbow flailing out. Has a long ways to go before he can be considered a threat to do much outside of five feet
-Career 53% free throw shooter
-Averages nearly three turnovers for every assist he dishes out
-Feel for the game is a work in progress. Doesn't always catch everything thrown to him cleanly.
-Not always looking to score. Doesn't always want the ball
-Gets down on himself at times. Clearly a work in progress on both ends of the floor

Outlook: Physical specimen who shows impressive flashes of potential in different areas. Late bloomer who has huge upside to continue to improve. Parents are from Nigeria but grew up in the States. Had a very impressive weekend at adidas Nations. Recruiting services (except Scout.com) seem to be missing the boat on him? Committed to UCLA

Brandon McCoy, 6'11, Morse CA, Class of 2017
A report on McCoy from earlier this summer can be found here

Udoka Azubuike, 6'11, Lagos, Nigeria, 2016 High School Class

Mike Schmitz

Strengths:
-Elite physical profile.
-6' 11.5 in shoes with a massive 7' 5 wingspan.
-Extremely developed physically. Bruising 267-pound frame.
-Good leaper for his size and weight. Put back dunks. Can finish above the rim after catching drop offs in the paint. Soft hands.
-Career 23 points per-40 on tremendous efficiency, 68% 2P%.
-Shows some touch around the rim. Dropped in a pair of jump hooks. Effective when he's able to get deep position. Finishes through contact.
-Has the physical profile to be a very good rebounder. Career 4.7 offensive rebounds per-40. Plays with some nastiness. Not afraid to throw his body around. Chins the ball and keeps it high with other players swiping at it.
-Defensive potential thanks to his size, strength, length and mobility. Blocks 3.5 shots per-40 on career
-Career 8.3 defensive rebounds per-40

Weaknesses:
-Lacks a natural feel for the game. Not sure what to do with the ball when he catches inside. Uncomfortable passer. Career .5 steals per-40 (lacks anticipation skills and timing)
-Poor shooting mechanics. Shoots a push shot with a low release point Career 46% shooter from the free throw line.
-Plays inside of five feet. Not a threat to make mid-range jumpers or score at all outside of the paint.
-Not a quick twitch guy on offense or defense.
-Not the most fluid athlete. Lumbers up and down the floor a bit.
-Very rigid footwork in the post. Huge feet. Lacks polish on the block.
-Doesn't have great instincts on defense. Reaction time and fundamentals aren't there yet.
-Can be a bit foul prone.

Outlook:
The supposedly 15-year-old Nigerian center Udoka Azubuike is a man amongst boys at virtually every setting he plays in. His physical profile is outstanding for a big man prospect, and he has the type of edge that coaches want from a player with his size, strength and length. With that said, Azubuike is a long way to go as a pure basketball player feel for the game, instincts, and fundamentals on defense. Azubuike will never have to be the most skilled player given his physical tools (although he does display good hands and solid touch inside), but it will be interesting to see if he can develop into anything more than a big body on the interior.

Although Azubuike is listed as being only 15 years old, he's scheduled to enter college in a year from now, which doesn't make a great deal of sense. Even if he's 18, rather than 15, he's a very good prospect. His size, length, frame and productivity everywhere he plays is clearly legit.

DeRon Davis, 6'10, Overland CO, Class of 2016
Jonathan Givony

Strengths:
-Has a very strong frame with long arms and big hands
-Physical and competitive player. Displays a nice activity level
-Operates regularly with back to the basket. Uses strong frame to establish deep post position. Can back players down. Can score inside the post using decent footwork and touch, sometimes using hook shots and turnaround jumpers
-Draws contact regularly and gets to the free throw line at a strong rate. 6.8 free throws per-40 for career
-Sets wide, solid screens. Not afraid to lay the wood
-Unselfish player who makes the extra pass. Doesn't turn the ball over very frequently.
-Shows potential with his shooting stroke, particularly from the waist up. Could develop this part of his game in time. Career 68% free throw shooter
-Knows what he is and generally plays to his strengths.
-Can be a presence on defense when he wants to. Blocks 2.5 shots per-40 minutes. Gets in the passing lanes as well (1.8 per-40)

Weaknesses:
-Does not possess great height or athleticism. Lacks a degree of explosiveness, particularly as a finisher.
-Just an average rebounder on both ends of the floor. 3.3 offensive rebounds per-40. 6.1 defensive.
-A little bit wild at times, particularly when asked to do too much. Projects as a complimentary offensive player with his current skill-level
-Has a ways to go as a shooter before this can become a real part of his game. Displays average balance and footwork.
-Will have to continue to improve his post game as the competition level increases and his strength advantage becomes less of a factor.
-Can improve his off hand, particularly as a finisher inside the paint
-Doesn't always play with the same intensity on defense as he does on offense. Loses his focus at times
-A year older than his class. Will turn 20 in the first few weeks of his freshman season

Outlook: Listed by recruiting outlets at 6-8 or 6-9, but appears to be bigger than that. More of a center than the PF he's usually listed at, but may improve his skill-level enough to play both spots down the road. A bit undersized for a center, without great explosiveness to make up for it. Not flashy or overly skilled, but an extremely useful player on both ends of the floor. Appears to have improved his body, motor and toughness from we've seen him in the past

James Banks, 6'11, Decatur, GA, 2016 High School Class

Mike Schmitz

Strengths:
-Really strong base. Good upper body that will continue to fill out. Wide shoulders.
-Long arms. Big hands.
-Solid offensive rebounder (career 3.6 per-40)
-Moves well laterally. Can contain the ball in pick and roll or hedge and recover. Has quick enough feet to eventually guard power forwards on defense.
-Solid timing as a shot blocker. Career 2.7 blocks per 40 minutes pace adjusted. Not a freak athlete but long and mobile enough to meet opponents at the rim.
-Solid fundamentals on defense, especially given the fact that he's only been playing basketball for a couple of years.
-Doesn't force the issue on offense. Knows his limitations.
-Solid shooting mechanics from the line. Should be able to develop a mid-range game in time.

Weaknesses:
-Good not great athlete. Tends to lumber a bit getting up and down the floor.
-Not much of a threat to score outside of put backs. Hands are a little shaky. No post game. Gets swallowed up inside at times.
-Limited offensive player in general. Averaged just 10.7 points per-40 minutes this summer, which is a very low rate. Did so on poor efficiency at that, just 50% for 2
-Average feel for the game. Dishes out two and a half times as many turnovers as assists. Almost never gets in the passing lanes (.6 steals per-40) despite his length
-Lacks a level of toughness. Not a physical guy despite his excellent frame. Doesn't set strong screens.
-Doesn't defensive rebound like you would hope. 5.5 defensive rebounds per-40. Stands around too often. Can do a better job finding a body then attacking the rebound.

Outlook:
A quarterback growing up, who only recently converted to playing basketball full time, right now Banks looks the part of high-level prospect more than he plays the part. There isn't a ton to Banks' game at this stage, but he has a very good frame, a strong base, long arms, some shot blocking ability, good feet, and has only been playing basketball for two years, making him worth tracking as he continues to develop as a prospect.

Interview:



Taruike Jianiyou, 6'10, Beijing Ducks, China
Jonathan Givony

Strengths:
-Doesn't have great size, but has a very nice frame, especially in the upper body
-Fairly mobile. Runs the floor. Can play above the rim a bit.
-Not completely clueless offensively. Shows some flashes. Can create his own shot a little. Some ball-handling ability with left hand. Uses the glass nicely at times.
-Solid finisher around the basket. Shot 71% at Nations
-Has a chance to develop some shooting ability. Mechanics aren't bad. Ball comes out nicely with a good rotation
-Has some toughness. Not afraid to get physical. Will use his body to his advantage.
-Gets after it on the offensive glass
-Competes on defense. Doesn't get backed down. Blocks shots on occasion (2.4 per-40 at Nations)

Weaknesses:
-Undersized for a center at around 6-9
-Raw and unpolished. Looks fairly new to the game.
-No real skill-level offensively at this stage. Everything looks rushed. Game moves too fast for him. Lacks great footwork. Does not have a very advanced post game
-Struggles to defend on the perimeter. Not very flexible. Lacks a degree of explosiveness. Does not possess great awareness
-Poor defensive rebounder

Outlook: 17-year old Chinese big man with solid physical tools. Father is Nigerian, which gives him a fairly unique background. Was not overly productive at Nations, averaging just 12 points and 8 rebounds per-40 minutes, but showed some flashes of physical tools and upside. Competitive. Probably his first time playing against this type of competition. Was up and down. Will need to either grow or develop a higher skill-level to emerge as a real NBA prospect, but has a chance to play for China internationally down the road.
 


Feedback for this article may be sent to jonathan@draftexpress.com Mike.Schmitz2@gmail.com .

 

Jarrett Allen
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 220 lbs.
Birthday: 04/21/1998
17 Years Old
Teams:
High School: St. Stephens Episcopal
Current Team: Texas Pro , HS Senior
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
4.2 Pts, 5.8 Rebs, 0.2 Asts


Ike Anigbogu
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 230 lbs.
Birthday: 10/16/1998
16 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Centennial HS
Current Team: Compton Magic , HS Senior
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
4.1 Pts, 5.8 Rebs, 0.3 Asts


Udoka Azubuike
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 11"
Weight: 280 lbs.
Birthday: 09/17/1999
15 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Potter's House Christian Academy
Current Team: , HS Senior
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
13.1 Pts, 7.6 Rebs, 0.4 Asts


DeRon Davis
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 210 lbs.
Birthday: 11/20/1996
18 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Overland
Current Team: Colorado Hawks , HS Senior
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF/C,
Possible: PF/C
Quick Stats:
14.3 Pts, 6.2 Rebs, 1.8 Asts


James Banks
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 11"
Weight: 220 lbs.
Birthday: 00/00/0000
Teams:
High School: Mount Vernon Presbyterian School
Current Team: Atlanta Celtics , HS Senior
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
4.8 Pts, 5.3 Rebs, 0.2 Asts


Taruike Jianiyou
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 220 lbs.
Birthday: 03/17/1998
17 Years Old
Teams:
High School:
Current Team: Beijing , International
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
6.3 Pts, 4.3 Rebs, 0.8 Asts


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