Top NBA Draft Prospects in the Big 12, Part Two September 28, 2012
Coming into the season as the second rated point guard in the 2011 high school class according to the RSCI board, Myck Kabongo had big expectations placed on his slender shoulders. While Kabongo did not have a standout freshman year, especially in terms of his own scoring output, he showed the skills, leadership, and maturity that made him such a highly rated prospect as well as some of the weaknesses he'll need to improve upon in order to reach his full potential.
Kabongo is first and foremost a pass first point guard. He has very good natural point guard instincts, displays a consistently high basketball IQ, and is extremely unselfish. Combine that with his excellent court vision and these are extremely promising qualities for a point guard prospect to have, particularly one at such a young age. Kabongo was 7th in the DraftExpress database in assists per field goal attempt, and his 6.7 assists per 40 minutes pace adjusted was the top mark among freshman in our top 100 database.
Kabongo isn't quite as advanced when looking for his own shot, as his 12.4 points per 40 minutes pace adjusted, a number which is in the bottom 10 of our top 100 database, will a attest to. He shows some potential as a catch and shoot threat, as he appears more consistent in his form when he's able to step into the shot. Shooting off the dribble, however, is something he is not yet comfortable with. He doesn't get very much elevation on his jump shot and he struggles to maintain his balance when pulling up off the dribble. This is something that affects the rest of his offensive game, as defenders are able to sag off of him substantially when defending him off of pick and roll and isolation situations, limiting his ability to get into the lane.
Despite that, Kabongo does show some ability off the dribble, as he has good quickness and an array of hesitation moves that he uses to successfully get by his man and into the paint. Once he gets into the paint, though, he struggles to finish at the rim. Kabongo isn't all that explosive of a leaper and his lack of strength can hinder him when trying to finish through contact. On the positive side, he's very good at drawing contact, helping offset his inefficiency finishing plays. Kabongo was third in our database at 0.77 free throws attempted per field goal attempted.
Kabongo's main value in the paint is as a passer, where he is equally adept at finding big men cutting to the hoop as he is at finding spot-up shooters when defenders sag off of them. Kabongo's timing is excellent, finding the exact time when the defensive rotations are at their weakest and finding the open man. As good as he is as a passer it behooves him to develop his ability to shoot off the dribble, as forcing defenders to pick him up 20 feet from the hoop will open up a plethora of driving and passing lanes, making him all that much more effective as a passer in these sets.
One area where Kabongo can improve, both in transition and in the half-court, is in limiting his turnovers. His 3.9 turnovers per 40 minutes pace adjusted were the 5th highest among our top 100 prospects. While he has good control of the ball on the whole, he has a tendency to get a little bit loose with his dribble in traffic, and is prone to having the ball stripped on his drives to the hoop.
On the defensive side of the ball, Kabongo does a good job of picking his man up far from the hoop, preventing opposing point guards from getting into their sets early and doing a good job of forcing deflections with his long arms. This can sometimes be counterproductive, though, as he can at times find himself in foul trouble by picking up fouls far from the hoop, and also sometimes put his teammates in bad situations by gambling a bit too much on the perimeter. He also struggles at time fighting through pick and rolls due to his size, and needs to do a better job of recognizing the screen early. Overall, he moves his feet well laterally, and that combined with his length and high effort level gives him a pretty good base to develop as a defender down the line.
On the surface, Myck Kabongo's freshman season may have been a disappointment to some due to his lofty expectations. That being said, he displayed the skill sets that made him such a highly regarded prospect. With the departure of the undrafted J'Covan Brown, the young Texas Longhorns will need Kabongo to shoulder a much larger offensive role. While this may not be Kabongo's natural offensive role, if he can succeed in developing his own offensive arsenal, particularly shooting off the dribble, it may make him a more effective setup man down the line as well. [Read Full Article] HoopHall Classic Scouting Reports: Elite Prospects (Part One) January 19, 2011 Joseph Treutlein
A player we've already profiled extensively over the course of his high school career, Myck Kabongo (#11 Scout, #24 Rivals, #10 ESPN) did about what you'd expect him to in his two games this weekend, intelligently managing his team's offense with his pure point guard prowess and leading Findlay to two impressive wins.
Playing a deferential scoring role with the depth of talent on his team, Kabongo has an extremely advanced feel for the game given his age, doing a great job reading what the defense gives him and showing great decision-making with the ball. He has an outstanding knack for finding open guys on the floor in position to score, and can make the full array of passes, be it transition, pick-and-roll, drive-and-kick, or simple passes around the perimeter.
Kabongo excelled most here with his drive-and-kick game, both penetrating all the way to the rim or making quick one-dribble moves toward the basket, doing a good job recognizing when the defense collapsed on him.
As far as Kabongo's own offense goes, he did a good job knocking down the few spot-up threes he took here, still having somewhat of a flat form but usually getting solid results when not pulling up. He didn't show much in terms of creating his own offense off the dribble, be it mid-range game or going to the rim, but has all the quickness to get past his man when he needs to. Definitely more passer than scorer at this stage, how good Kabongo be as a point producer is likely something we won't fully see until his team consistently needs him to do so at the college level.
Defensively, Kabongo also impresses, playing a cerebral, team-oriented style, showing good awareness and focus, constantly moving around off the ball, and being a very well-rounded, effective player.
Looking forward, Kabongo is an NCAA-ready player who should make an instant impact at Texas next season, where his unselfish brand of playmaking should be a welcome addition to a Longhorns team that's had so little consistency at the position the past few years. Continuing to improve his perimeter scoring and filling out his frame should be among his priorities, but his future looks extremely bright. [Read Full Article]
2010 Boost Mobile Elite 24: Quinn Cook Interviews Myck Kabongo September 18, 2010
[Read Full Article] FIBA Americas U-18 Championships: Top International Prospects July 1, 2010 The go-to guy on a talented Canadian national team, Myck Kabongo did a nice job showing off his strengths at this tournament.
Kabongo has average size (about 6-1 with a skinny frame that must continue to fill out), but he is an extremely quick and talented point guard. He's excellent in transition, has nice change of speed ability and is a true floor general. He makes the extra pass, shows a high basketball IQ and has strong leadership skills.
Just an average scorer at this stage, Kabongo didn't have enough weapons surrounding him to show off his skills as a pass-first point guard. He showed the ability to find the open man in a variety of ways, though, and is particularly adept at driving and dishing.
In terms of weaknesses, he looks a bit limited finishing around the basket and he struggles with contact at this juncture. He was also more turnover prone than you'd hope, showing a level of inexperience that is to be expected considering his age. He's not a great shooter either, displaying limited touch and struggling to make shots off the dribble in the mid-range area (something he must continue to work on considering his slight frame).
On the plus side, Kabongo is an extremely competitive player who puts out a good effort defensively and shows excellent anticipation skills off the glass and in the passing lanes. His feel for the game is obviously outstanding. His standing as one of the best point guards in the 2011 high school class appears to be well deserved. [Read Full Article]
2010 HoopHall Classic: Top Prospects January 20, 2010 Jonathan Givony
One of the most highly touted point guards in the 2011 class, Myck Kabongo did a very good job of showing his strengths here in Springfield, while also leading his team to victory.
Kabongo has a good physical profile, standing 6-2, with a nice frame, long arms, and solid athleticism. He's not overwhelmingly quick or explosive at the moment, but is still extremely young and has plenty of time to reach his peak physical potential.
The type of player most college coaches would love to have running their team, Kabongo is clearly a pure pass-first point guard with strong intangibles and a pretty well-rounded all-around game. He likes to operate in transition, but is also pretty solid in the half-court, having a good understanding of how to play the pick and roll and create scoring opportunities, but mostly preferring (at times overly so) to drive and dish to teammates rather than looking to shoot the ball himself. He clearly favors driving to his left, and like all young guards, needs to continue to develop his advanced ball-handling skills.
Kabongo is also a pretty good shooter, showing awkward, flat-footed mechanics, but seeing good results from 3-point range nonetheless. He needs to continue to work on his pull-up jumper, though, particularly from mid-range, where he's not nearly as effective.
Defensively, Kabongo had his hands full with one of the top point guards in high school basketball, Kendall Marshall, but clearly got the better of him in this game. He did not leave him for an instant when the two were on the court at the same time, sticking to him like glue and then putting excellent pressure on the ball when he was finally able to initiate the offense.
Its pretty clear what the recruiting services like so much about Kabongo's game, as it's rare to see a players at this level show the type of unselfishness and pass-first mentality he does, let alone one who is only a junior. In order to emerge as a top prospect down the road he must continue to work on his offensive polish and hopefully develop that extra gear that most great guards have. [Read Full Article] ESPN RISE National High School Invitational April 12, 2009 One of the top playmakers in the 2011 class was on display during the course of the weekend. St. Benedict's Myck Kabongo (#14 ESPN) is already showing signs of a bright future as a point guard. Having committed early to Rick Barnes and Texas, Kabongo immediately stands out on the floor due to his excellent quickness. The sophomore has a great first step and coupled with his decent ball-handling skills, he is able to get into the lane fairly easily at this level. He definitely needs to improve on his ability to stay under control, as he picked up a few offensive fouls during the tournament as a result of leaving his feet on kick outs. This is something that will come as he grows and matures as a basketball player though.
Kabongo's jumper isn't terrible, as he shows good form, but he certainly needs to extend his range and improve his consistency before he can be considered a legitimate perimeter threat. There is no question the most appealing aspect of his game right now is his point guard skill set. Kabongo shows great court vision and is a fantastic passer. He was able to drive and kick to teammates for open looks on the wings as well as draw and dish to teammates for easy looks inside. Defensively, he has great lateral quickness and pretty quick hands, but he needs to do a better job of not getting lost on screens. [Read Full Article]
NBA Combine Interviews: Larkin, Schroeder, Kabongo, Canaan December 31, 1969