#2) Lautaro Lopez, 6'2, 162, Point Guard, 17.5 years old, Argentina
Lautaro Lopez capped off his busy summer with a strong showing at the Americas Team Camp, after competing at the FIBA U17 World Championship, the FIBA Americas U-18 Championship, and the Adidas Nations. The Argentinian guard was one of the more dynamic players in Mexico City, showing the ability to both score and create with ease. At 6'2 Lopez has decent size for the point guard position, but at 162 pounds his body is very much on the thin side, something that may hinder his long-term potential if he can't add weight to his frame.
Lopez is a quick and skilled guard, who can operate smoothly at different speeds and with change of directions. He is very comfortable playing out of ball screens, and is a creative passer, who can make difficult passes look easy.
Throughout his FIBA play this summer Lopez hadn't shot the ball consistently from deep, but that wasn't the case this week. He's got deep range, and a smooth stroke, and is more than capable of creating space off the bounce and scoring with one or two dribble jumpers. Lopez can break defenses down off the bounce, but has some limitations finishing around the rim. He has to get creative with floaters because he doesn't have the athletic ability or strength to finish consistently in traffic.
Lopez loves to push the pace and get out in the open court, but he plays with a certain level of confidence and flair that can sometimes come back to bite him. He's competitive on the defensive end, but his lack of strength is very apparent in his on ball defense, which is fairly lackluster. His lack of physical tools may be his biggest setback moving up in competition, but in this setting he certainly had the skills to compensate for it.
Lautaro Lopez, 6'2, Point Guard, Almagra, 1999
-Quick and fluid guard who can operate at different speeds
-Strong ball-handler with excellent footwork as a driver
-Has an extra gear he can get to to help him create off the bounce
-Has impressive timing and body control attacking defenders and weaving through traffic
-Creative passer who can make very difficult passes look easy. Has a lot of flair to his game
-Loves to push the ball in the open floor
-Has a decent shooting stroke. Can make shots both with his feet set and off the dribble
-Advanced feel for the game for his age
-Body is a major work in progress. Very narrow in both the upper and lower body
-Struggles mightily finishing inside the paint. Everything is a difficult floater
-Can get very wild with his decision making at times. Careless turnovers. Averaged more turnovers than assists in Zaragoza
-Shot selection is not ideal
-Jumper is definitely on the streaky side. Career 24% 3-point percentage in 28 games in DX database. 65% FT%
-Can he score enough to keep defenses honest?
-Very limited defensively due to his narrow frame and overall average tools
Outlook One of the tournament's leading scorers at 17 points per game. Had some impressive outings, but struggled with consistency and efficiency, which has been the case throughout his career. Shows tremendous creativity and moxy from the point guard position, but average physical tools may limit his overall upside.
-Average size at 6-2, but has some nice length
-Nice ball-handling skills. Some quickness. Good first step
-Really knows how to play pick and roll for a kid his age. Changes speeds. Good footwork. Finds open man
-Very unselfish. Makes extremely creative passes
-Good feel for the game. Moves off the ball. Knows how to play
-Tough and aggressive.
-Not afraid to drive right into teeth of the defense and take hits. Finishes creatively and intelligently, using either hand
-Shooting mechanics don't look bad
-Competes on defense.
-Has some swag to him
-Extremely thin. Difficult to say how his body will develop in time
-Didn't make a single 3-pointer at Adidas nations. Career 5/27 3-point shooter in 228 minutes we have logged
-Career 65% FT%
-Lack of strength will make it difficult for him to finish at a high level inside the paint unless he grows.
-What kind of potential does he have defensively?
Outlook: Very young and creative point guard, only born in 1999. Was the leader of the Argentinean U16 team that finished in third place this summer at the FIBA Americas Championship, earning a spot in the U17 World Championship in Spain in 2016. Had a negative assist to turnover at the FIBA Americas U16 Championship, appearing to look primarily for his own offense. At Adidas Nations, among much older players and on a very unselfish and disciplined team, he looked to pass as much as possible and posted a near 5/1 assist to turnover ratio.