H: 6' 8"|
W: 270 lbs
(20 Years Old)
|Pick: 32 in 2016 Mock Draft||Agent: Andrew Morrison ||
Hometown: Dreux, France
Drafted: Pick 16 in 2016 by Celtics
French big man Guerschon Yabusele works out in front of a myriad of NBA executives at the CAA Sports Pro Day in Los Angeles.
Jonathan Givony: What have you been doing in Los Angeles so far?
Guerschon Yabusele: We work out a lot you know. We keep on shooting. Playing 1 on 1, 2 on 2, 3 on 3. Keep in shape, working out a lot.
Jonathan Givony: What kind of basketball things do they have you working on? The trainers, what do they want to see you improve on?
Guerschon Yabusele: The trainers want to see me improve on my ball-handling skills. Keep working on my shot and my post up game, and my three point range.
Jonathan Givony: What was the Pro Day like for you?
Guerschon Yabusele: It was a big day for me. I really like to work a lot, and work like this when there are a lot of people here. I get to improve on myself and show them that I can really play basketball, and that I can play in the NBA.
Jonathan Givony: Was it nerve racking being in front of so many NBA general managers? Pat Riley and Jerry West and all these legendary guys.
Guerschon Yabusele: I mean at the beginning I was a little bit nervous, but that's good. I know I'm ready, so I just go on the court and show them that I can play. It feels great to be here with everybody.
Jonathan Givony: What do you think they were able to see from you?
Guerschon Yabusele: I think they could see that I could shoot. I got to work a lot on my ball-handling. I can post up and I can play one on one. I can play defense and offense. I'm smart on the court and can do a lot of things.
Jonathan Givony: People think that the difference between Pro A and Pro B is huge, but this year you made it look pretty easy with the transition. You were able to get a lot of the same numbers, you had some great performances against some of the best teams in the league. How were you able to do that?
Guerschon Yabusele: At the beginning of the season you know it was a little tough, because I had to learn and play quickly. I was learning a lot, talking to the players. Go in the gym before and after and stay. I got to work a lot and you know just keep going. It was tough, but I liked it, I had to go hard. I had to learn fast, and I just wanted to play like I know I can.
Jonathan Givony: How good of a shooter are you right now?
Guerschon Yabusele: Right now I think I'm a good shooter. I can make 3s even if someone is defending me closely.
Jonathan Givony: How have you found the difference between the European line and the NBA line? Is that going to be a transition for you?
Guerschon Yabusele: From the European line to the NBA I think it's going to be ok. I know the beginning is not going to be easy for sure, but I think I'm really ready and I can improve myself.
Jonathan Givony: What can you tell us about your measurements, even in centimeters and kilograms? Your weight, and your height, and your wingspan if you know it.
Guerschon Yabusele: Right now I'm 275 pounds, and I'm 6'7 without shoes.
Jonathan Givony: What is the month of June going to look like for you coming up to the NBA Draft?
Guerschon Yabusele: It's going to be a big day for me and my family and my friends. We are going to be here and ready. I got to do a couple workouts before that. I'm ready for the draft so we'll see what happens.
Jonathan Givony: How important is it for you to go to get drafted very high?
Guerschon Yabusele: Even if I'm the first round or the second round I don't really care it's not that important. You see Draymond Green was drafted second round and right now he is one of the best players in the league. I don't really care about it.
Jonathan Givony: What do you care about?
Guerschon Yabusele: To be drafted. I want to get drafted and play in the NBA next year.
Jonathan Givony: You mentioned Draymond Green. Could you play that kind of role as a small center sometimes, who spaces the floor or would you prefer to be a power forward full time?
Guerschon Yabusele: Right now I think I could play like him. A lot of people talk to me, and compare me to him. I got a lot of energy. I can dribble a little bit and I can shoot it. I can play defense on the 3, 4, and 5. I can play on both ends, so I think I can play like him. I know I got a lot of work to do, but I really think I can do it.
Jonathan Givony: I was looking at your per minute numbers from last year and this year, and your rebounding took a big jump. Usually when guys go from Pro B to Pro A they go way down, but you went way up. How did your rebounding improve so much?
Guerschon Yabusele: I was ready, I was really ready to play in Pro A. Even when I was playing in Pro B I was thinking about Pro A all the time because I really wanted to go up a level. I just go with energy, all that I can, jumping everywhere, try to grab a lot of rebounds, take some minutes, take some shots. I just improve myself, and I'm happy to play. The coach was trusting me, so I was just playing. I'm 20 years old, I came excited on the court. I give a lot of energy, I try to be the energizer on the team.
Jonathan Givony: Even though you found a lot of success individually, your team struggled, and ultimately was relegated. Why did you guys struggle to come together so much as a team?
Guerschon Yabusele: This year was tough. A lot of players came and a lot of players left. Sometimes we played a game with five players, or six players. It was tough with confidence, but we tried to stay together everybody on the team, and talk to each other. When you play like 32 games, and you play with six players it's tough to win a lot of games. We took some games, and we were happy. We got some problems, everyone outside the court. But you know, we tried to keep going. We were close, every game we were close, like five points or four points. We played big teams, with a big roster, and we just give everything on the court.
Jonathan Givony: Great stuff man, appreciate it.
Scouting Report by Matt Kamalsky. Video Analysis by Mike Schmitz
Among the more intriguing international early entrants for the 2016 NBA Draft, Guerschon Yabusele was one of the only players under the age of 21 to see significant action in the French first division (Pro A) this season. Averaging 11.5 points and 6.8 rebounds per game for often outmanned Rouen, who were relegated to the second division after finishing just 6-28, the powerfully built forward became one of just three draft-eligible domestic players this decade to end the year averaging over 10 points and 5 rebounds per game, joining Ludovic Vaty and Mouhammadou Jaiteh.
Born in Dreux, a town of 30,000 an hour west of Paris, Yabusele spent the early part of his career with Roanne, playing exclusively in the Junior League (Espoirs). The thick power forward also played a minor role at a number of international events in his late teens, for example Team Africa at the 2013 adidas Nations, as well as France's U18 and U20 National Teams.
A bit of a late bloomer, Yabusele made his Pro A debut in 2013, but didn't see significant action at the senior level until Roanne was relegated to Pro B during the 2014-2015 season. Averaging 8.5 points and 4.3 rebounds per game as a regular starter, Yabusele began to show some promising signs, albeit against less than stellar competition.
His jump into the collective conscious of NBA decision makers came at the 2015 EuroCamp, where, in front of representatives of every NBA team, including over a dozen General Managers, the then 19-year-old big man scored 20 points per game posting a PER of 48 for France's U20 National Team in three preparation games, thoroughly dominating offensively. Averaging a less impressive 9.2 points and 6.6 rebounds per game at the actual U20 European Championship, Yabusele had nonetheless planted himself firmly on the radar of NBA scouts entering this season, as he made the jump back to Pro A, signing with Rouen (not to be confused with Roanne).
Measured on the NBA workout circuit in recent weeks at 6'8 in shoes with a near-7'2 wingspan and tipping the scales around 270 pounds, it isn't difficult to see what makes him an interesting prospect on first glance. Yabusele has a massive frame that appears to be able to gain and lose weight quickly, and though he is slightly undersized for a power forward, he compensates with his wingspan and nice explosiveness. What makes Yabusele unique, aside from his physical tools, is that he appears very comfortable playing facing the basket offensively and possesses terrific scoring instincts.
Playing a massive role for Rouen, especially down the stretch when he played all 40 minutes on a number of occasions, and enjoyed a huge amount of freedom, the talented big man did around a third of his scoring from the perimeter on spot up or pick and pop opportunities according to Synergy Sports Technology. Contributing in a variety of ways in the paint cutting off the ball, running the floor, crashing the boards, and even creating a bit for himself in the post, Yabusele wasn't overwhelmingly productive in any one area, but did a bit of everything offensively.
Perhaps the most intriguing element of the French forward's game is his jump shot. A reliable shooter with his feet set all the way to the 3-point line, Yabusele shoots a bit of a set shot getting very little elevation, but has a fluid release. He attempted just 1.8 3-pointers per game this season, but made 43% of his attempts and 43% of long twos. Understanding his limitations and shooting very few pull up jumpers, Yabusele seems to have some potential as a legitimate floor spacer, though it will be interesting to see how his shot (and two-handed above the head release point) translates to the NBA 3-point line.
Around the basket, Yabusele is a good, but not great finisher. Shooting 57% around the rim in the half court, the 1995-born forward tries to tear the rim down with dunks when he can elevate in space, and carves out good position bullying opposing players with his frame, but isn't particularly quick off his feet and forces some shots driving to the basket from the mid-post around defenders. Flashing solid footwork, Yabusele tosses in the occasional half hook spinning off of defenders, but has room to improve his left hand and shot selection inside.
Finishing in the top-20 in Pro A in offensive rebounds per 40 minutes pace adjusted, and setting some solid screens to free up teammates, Yabusele does some of the little things as well, but isn't overly physical despite his strength. He has a lot of room to grow as a playmaker, but also flashes solid vision at times. A fairly skilled offensive player with terrific hands who can even put the ball on the floor a bit, Yabusele has some interesting tools to work with offensively.
The challenge for the bruising big man moving forward will be on the defensive end, where Yabusele struggled mightily this season. Rouen was the worst defensive team in Pro A by a comfortable margin, so expectations were fairly low, but Yabusele did little to help matters, frequently seeming to be going through the motions. Lacking great lateral quickness on the perimeter and providing little rim protection, Yabusele's length and strength help him in the post at times when he's competing, but he has a number of significant questions to answer on this end. At this stage, the jury is out on what Yabusele could be capable of in a more demanding environment with a bigger focus on defensive coaching and conditioning. To his credit, he looked far more engaged and showed better feet in other settings than he did at almost any point this season.
Making huge strides over the last two seasons, Guerschon Yabusele is a strong draft and stash candidate who could find his way into the late first or early second round depending on his willingness to stay in Europe for another year (or two). His defensive ability is a huge question mark, but if he can make significant strides on that end, particularly as a rim protector, he could even feasibly have some potential as a small-ball center. He is a little green at this point, but there's plenty to like about his game moving forward.
Yabusele's contract situation is interesting. Rouen bought his rights from Roanne last summer. He has a NBA out clause for this summer, and his team was relegated to Pro B, meaning a change of scenery is obviously coming. If the team drafting Yabusele wants him in the NBA immediately then there is nothing to be seen here, but if a team wants to stash him in Europe this coming season, he'll need to find a way out of his current contract if he wants to move to a more favorable development situation, which may require some creativity.
Guerschon Yabusele scored 23 points on 7-13 from the field to go along with 9 rebounds in the early game as the French U20 National Team downed the Greek U19 National Team. A chiseled big man with long arms and excellent athleticism, Yabusele is more than just a bruiser, possessing nice hands and touch around the rim, flashing some ability to create off the bounce, and finishing strong inside, sometimes emphatically. His jump shooting mechanics away from the rim are a work in progress, even if he's a capable shooter, and he forces some shots and drives from the midrange, but it isn't difficult to see why he was able to contribute as a regular starter in the French 2nd division at age 19 averaging 8.5 points and 4.3 rebounds for Roanne.
Coming up with a number of blocks and steals today, the 19 year old also rebounded the ball well, which is significant considering that has been a the knock on him through his career. Built similarly to Jarnell Stokes, but preferring to play facing the basket, it isn't surprising the Yabusele has been so productive through two games against younger, less seasoned competition here. If he can continue to play with the same kind of motor in Pro A next season, his physical tools, budding skill level and intriguing versatility will almost certainly keep him on the NBA radar after what he showed this weekend.