Luka Samanic Scouting Report

CONTEXT

Luka Samanic is the second-ranked European prospect born in 2000[1] and currently considered the 14th-ranked prospect in the 2019 draft class[2] but has dealt with a lot of ebbs and flows over the last year.

The 18-year-old[3] led Croatia to a first-place finish in the 2017 U18 FIBA European Championship Division B, earning MVP honors along the way, but the season with Barcelona didn’t go as well.

He not only didn’t get any opportunities with the Catalan powerhouse in the Spanish ACB, let alone the Euroleague, but went on to average just 12.7 minutes per game in his 22 appearances with the second team in the Spanish LEB Gold[4].

In his limited 280-minute sample against that level of competition, the six-foot-10 stretch big averaged 21.2 points per 40 minutes but on just 43.2% effective shooting, while compiling a 9.2 PER.

Needing a little bit of a pick-me-up midway through that run, he was put on the junior squad that participated in the Cuitat De L’Hospitalet regional portion of the Adidas Next Generation Tournament and killed it against his age group.

Samanic averaged 34.2 points per 40 minutes on just 42.1% effective shooting but while logging 35% usage and compiling a 31.8 PER in 108 minutes, earning MVP honors and leading Barcelona to three wins in four games – falling just short of qualifying to the Final Four that is played during Euroleague Final Four weekend.

Displeased with his lack of opportunities with the first team, the Zagreb native surprised many earlier this summer by not re-signing with Barcelona and transferring to Union Olimpija instead – where one assumes he was promised a real chance of earning minutes in the Adriatic League, the FIBA Basketball Champions League and the Slovenian SKL.

His fortunes haven’t completely turned just yet, though. Samanic finished a reasonably strong appearance at the 2018 U18 FIBA European Championships Division A this weekend, where he averaged 25.6 points per 40 minutes on 57% effective shooting and compiled a 28.7 PER but couldn’t lift Croatia any higher than a 11th-place finish, as the team was minus-19 in his 159 minutes[5].

Samanic did most of his work with his back to the basket, as Croatia played an offense designed to get three-pointers out of posting up its big men, drawing double teams and then swinging the ball around the perimeter. He struggled to get particularly impressive looks for himself but did very well creating for others – assisting on 18.7% of Croatia’s scores when he was on the floor[6].

His two-point percentage stayed close to 50% thanks to a few finishes near the basket and catch-and-shoot long-twos but other than passing, Samanic was at his most effective as a three-point shooter when he got a few shots out of spacing out to the three-point line and on pick-and-pops. He was also an effective presence in the offensive glass.

On the other end, Samanic was asked to defend pick-and-rolls in a multitude of ways and showed a lot of versatility in terms of being able to execute the many coverages, as he is quite mobile and nimble for someone his height. Samanic also showed to be an effective rim protector when well positioned.

INTERIOR OFFENSE

He has a slight 210-pound frame in the context of his height and struggles to get a deep seal in the low post, often getting pushed further close to the three-point arc.

Samanic hasn’t yet developed any power moves and has a hard time knocking his defender back in order to create space for basic turnaround hooks. He is great at feeling double teams and has very good court vision, though. Besides igniting passing sequences on quick touch passes, Samanic also launched some impressive passes across the court to the opposite end.

He has a decent head-fake to try getting his defender out of position and pretty good touch on his right-handed hook when he does manage to get a shot off but his best work making a move out of a post touch was via turning it into a face-up isolation or pivot-moving into a quick baseline drive.

He is well coordinated for someone his height, has light feet pivoting into putting the ball on the floor and has a rip-through move into burst to get an advantage in his first step.

Even in these instances, the best outcome was often him finding teammates against a collapsing defense on shovel passes over the top to the other big at the dunker spot or drop-offs to perimeter players on diagonal cuts and hammer passes across his body from under the rim to the corner.

Samanic also has a third dimension to his passing, as he proved himself able to catch the ball on the move, cut his roll short and kickout to a spot-up shooter in a pinch – assisting on 18.7% of Croatia’s scores when he was on the floor.

He is not an explosive leaper off two feet without some space to load up but showed great touch on non-dunk finishes – on righty finger-roll finishes off a jump-stop and righty scoop finishes dealing with a rim protector parked between him and the basket.

Samanic is rumored to have only a six-foot-10 wingspan[7] and isn’t a particularly high leaper but played with a decent motor looking to create second chance opportunities in the offensive glass – collecting 12% of Croatia’s misses when he was on the floor. He is not a powerful leaper off two feet in a crowd but has a quick second jump to make an impact on tip-ins and fight for 50-50 balls.

PERIMETER OFFENSE

After nailing just 28.2% of his 71 three-point shots with Barcelona last season, Samanic shot the ball very well this summer.

He gets little elevation off the ground but dips for rhythm, rises up in great balance, has fluid mechanics, fully elevates himself for a high release and regularly gets a high arc on his shot.

Samanic offered gravity as a weak-side floor-spacer on spot-ups and drifting around the wing but also proved he is able to hit quick bombs out of the pick-and-pop and as the back-screener in Spain pick-and-rolls – nailing nine of his 19 three-point shots in the tournament, at a pace of 4.7 such attempts per 40 minutes.

He is a so-so screener who looks to draw contact but whose thin frame isn’t all that challenging for tenacious on-ball defenders to slide around. Nonetheless, Samanic showed he can adjust his feet quickly and pull the trigger comfortably enough prior to or over contests more often than not.

As was, he demanded hard closeouts and was able to put the ball on the floor a lot on straight line drives. Samanic has long strides to get all the way to the basket against a scrambling defense, can mix in a spin move to weave his way through traffic and is an explosive leaper off one foot going up off momentum.

PERIMETER DEFENSE

Samanic was asked to defend pick-and-rolls in a variety of ways and proved he is at least capable of executing each of the many different coverages.

He is nimble enough to show-and-recover – blitzing at the three-point line against a pull-up threat and backpedalling to hustle back to the roll man quickly enough for the weak-side rotations not to get terribly exposed.

Samanic can hedge and influence ball-handlers way high in the perimeter as well – forcing dribble drives to go sideways and then hustling back to even the matchups behind him quickly.

He is also an option to pick up smaller players on switches – bending his knees to get down in a stance and showing he has several slides in him to stay in front of shifty players out in space, at least against the level of competition he faced in Latvia.

And last but not least, Samanic is also effective in drop back defense – keeping pace with ball-handlers getting downhill on straight line drives, using his eight-foot-10 standing reach to contest pull-ups effectively and even flashing quick leaping ability off two feet to block close-range attempts defending on the ball.

INTERIOR DEFENSE

Samanic logged some of his time at center and did well as a help defender for the most part. He has developed decent recognition skills and awareness coming off the weak-side or stepping up to the front of the basket as the last line of defense, putting himself in position to challenge a lot of shots.

Some opponents managed to score through him, as his lack of above average length and bulk hurt him in a few instances. But he was also fairly effective impacting shots via verticality and still managed to pick up more than a few blocks – averaging 2.7 blocks per 40 minutes in the event.

Samanic is attentive enough to his responsibilities putting a body on an opponent close by but isn’t very physical with his boxouts. Nonetheless, he was able to rely on his quickness chasing the ball off the rim quicker than this level of competition – collecting 25.3% of opponents’ misses when he was on the floor.

OUTLOOK

After a disappointing season with Barcelona, Samanic wasn’t necessarily dominant at the 2018 U18 FIBA European Championships, at least not in a way that elevated the level of his team.

He showed more than enough to remain one of the most interesting prospects of the 2019 draft class, though.

Samanic projects as a good shooter, who could offer floor spacing at the point of attack, can put the ball on the floor to drive against closeouts and has shown to be a versatile passer – capable of creating for others on the move and as a hub to facilitate offense.

In a time where teams like to create three-pointers off movement while posting up to give time for these actions to work themselves out or having perimeter players get a head-start by darting around big man on handoffs, Samanic figures to be an excellent fit for what the NBA is looking for in its big men right now.

That’s also the case because he’s shown to be capable of guarding the pick-and-roll in a multitude of ways, most importantly by being able to bother ball-handlers way out in the perimeter – which is quickly becoming a must in a league where pull-up threats are multiplying by the day.

That said, his frame needs to develop for him to belong from a physical-standpoint, especially considering that most of the potential he offers as a difference maker relies on his ability to eventually play center full-time.


[1] According to Eurospects

[2] According to ESPN

[3] DOB: 1/9/2000

[4] According to RealGM

[5] According to FIBA

[6] According to RealGM

[7] According to Draft Express

EDITOR’S NOTE: Rafael Uehara is the managing editor of ‘Basketball Scouting’. More of his work can be found here or at RealGM, where he is a regular contributor. He can be followed on twitter as @rafael_uehara

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Zion Williamson Scouting Report

CONTEXT

Zion Williamson was the second-ranked prospect in the 2018 high school class and is currently considered the seventh-ranked prospect in the 2019 draft class.

The 18-year-old has a remarkable frame for someone his age, as Duke currently lists him at 285 pounds. All that mass is reasonably well distributed within his six-foot-seven height and led to him consistently overwhelming competition at the high school and AAU levels.

Williamson looks like he could be dropped into an NBA game right now and belong just fine from a physical-standpoint, though all that bulk at his young age does raise concerns over his conditioning for the near future.

On top of that general size, he is very nimble for someone his weight and an explosive leaper off two feet, without needing to load up to go up. Thanks to that ability to act as a constant threat above the basket on both ends and his strength, Williamson projects as a big man at higher levels.

However, the lefty had quite a few opportunities to handle the ball at Spartanburg Day and with SC Supreme, flashing some very intriguing potential as a shot creator from the perimeter – invoking comparisons to LeBron James on some corners of the internet.

Williamson is well-coordinated for someone with his body type and very few players in his age group were able to contain his bulldozer drives. But his skill level is still early in its development and the teenager hasn’t yet shown the flashes of geniality we’ve seen from James, so those comparisons appear to be misguided and unfortunate.

As is, his time at Duke should offer more clarity in terms of what can be reasonably expected of Williamson once he fits into a team that also has to worry about accommodating all the other high end talent around him. It will also illuminate us on his true level of commitment to defense.

He looked quite bored more often than not and rarely played with the sort of intensity you’d like to see from an athlete of his caliber.

With his combination of size and athleticism, Williamson has the potential to be a dominant defender, both on the ball and acting as a weak-side helper. But regular effort and attention to his responsibilities executing the scheme are also part of the equation, and in those areas he still has plenty of room to improve.

(Check the rest of the post at RealGM)

Bol Bol Scouting Report

CONTEXT

Bol Bol was the fourth-ranked prospect in the 2018 high school class and is currently considered the 12th-ranked prospect in the 2019 draft class.

The seven-foot-two center is viewed like a potential unicorn – able to protect the rim on one end and space the floor out to the three-point line on the other.

He’s certainly proven himself a very impactful shot blocker when well positioned, as Findlay Prep had him hang back close to the basket at all times, but his energy level and physicality leave a lot to be desired at this point of his development. As a result, Bol is not the dominant defensive rebounder his general size suggests he should be, though his positioning consistently secured him healthy numbers.

The 18-year-old is also yet to show he is mobile enough to extend pick-and-roll defense above the foul line, which is rapidly becoming a must for big men at the NBA level, given the growing importance of the pull-up three-pointer.

On the other end, most of his touches came in the post, where he struggled to generate good-looking looks more often than not due to his lack of strength, or in the extended elbow area, where the Oregon commit showed his fondness for face-up isolating against his man. He can look intriguing operating off the dribble every now and again but appears to be a long way away from earning a living doing that.

In the near future, Bol projects as someone who can make an impact as a finisher, second chance creator and eventual pick-and-pop shooter but pretty much all of those look theoretical at this time.

Findlay pretty much never had him rolling down the lane off a ball-screen, his energy in the offensive glass left a lot to be desired as well and he rarely gets his three-pointers up – more often than not putting the ball on the floor to try creating something needlessly more complicated, in part due to the fact his unorthodox release requires him to be wide-open for him to get the ball out.

(Check the rest of the post at RealGM)

RJ Barrett Scouting Report

CONTEXT

RJ Barrett was the top prospect in the 2018 high school class and is currently considered to be the top prospect in the 2019 draft class.

From a physical-standpoint, the 18-year-old looks like someone who could log NBA minute right now due to his chiseled six-foot-seven, 202-pound frame. As a result of his advanced athletic development, he has already debuted for the Canadian National Team at the senior level in the latest World Cup Qualifiers window – in appearances against the Dominican Republican and the Virgin Islands.

In large part thanks to that overwhelming edge in athleticism in comparison to his age group, the swingman dominated in high school and led Montverde Academy to a “mythical” national championship in late March.

Barrett handled the ball in middle high pick-and-roll a lot less than when he’s had the chance to play with the Canadian National Team at the youth level but got plenty of opportunities to create against a set defense in isolation out of ball reversals and jogging to the ball for dribble-handoffs on the side of the floor. As a weak-side floor-spacer, his shot remains a mixed bag.

On the other end, Barrett acted mostly as a weak-side defender and used his length to fly around passing lanes from time-to-time. His position defense was solid as well and he put in the effort to execute the scheme. More interestingly, perhaps, Barrett picked up smaller players on switches every once in a while and showed he has room to become a capable defender at the point of attack.

(Check the rest of the post at RealGM)

Dmitry Kulagin Scouting Report

CONTEXT

  • 26 years old, DOB: 7/1/1992.
  • Moscow native.
  • After just 1,024 minutes with CSKA Moscow the previous two seasons, logged 866 minutes in his first year with Lokomotiv Kuban[1].
  • Key rotation player on the team that got to the Eurocup Finals and won 17 of 24 games in the VTB United League regular season (before getting swept by Khimki in the quarterfinals).
  • Averaged 18.1 points per 40 minutes on 56.3% true shooting and compiled a 15.8 PER in 36 appearances last season.
  • Six-foot-six point forward who ran a lot of offense: logged 24.4% usage rate and assisted on 26% of Lokomotiv Kuban’s scores when he was on the floor;
    • Can grab-and-go to push the ball up the floor in transition, trigger motion offense in the half-court, post-up smaller matchups in a pinch and run middle high pick-and-roll against a set defense.
  • Was relied on to defend different types of players and proved he offers quite a bit of versatility on the other end as well;
    • Can credibly defend smaller players at the point of attack, stay in front of similarly sized wings, chase shooters around the second side of the floor and put up a fight against bigger players in the post or under the glass.

OFFENSE

  • Pretty good shot creator for others out of pick-and-roll: can make well-timed pocket passes against drop defense, hit the dive man over the top against hedges or traps, toss up lobs in traffic off deep dribble penetration and launch crosscourt passes to the opposite end against hard shows cutting him off from turning the corner.
  • Turnover prone: attempts a lot of passes in traffic and is too aggressive trying to thread the needle in a few instances – giving up the ball on 19.9% of his possessions last season.
  • Doesn’t have an explosive first step but is quite resourceful with the ball in his hands: can go left off the pick and has a hesitation move, an in-and-out dribble and the ability to go behind the back in a pinch to create forward momentum or separation one-on-one.
  • Up-and-down finisher at the basket who can’t go up strong off one foot in traffic, rarely finishes through contact and attempts basic righty speed layups most of the time but who can also go to a shot fake off a jump-stop to get rim protectors in the air and a lefty finger-roll finish every once in a while;
    • Put a good deal of pressure at the rim: averaged 7.1 foul shots per 40 minutes last season.
  • Can post-up smaller matchups in a pinch: has a shot fake to get his man in the air to draw shooting fouls and can set a turnaround fade-away jumper but does best finding cutters and spot-up shooters out of working with his back to the basket.
  • Capable but poor shot maker off the dribble. Can create enough separation for step-back fade-away jumpers in isolation and side-step one-dribble pull-ups off the pick-and-roll but the ball doesn’t go in a whole lot;
    • Shot just 48.5% on 175 two-point attempts last season.
  • Capable but poor floor-spacer on spot-ups;
3P% 3PAs SEASON
29.9% 107 2017-2018
29.3% 92 2016-2017
29.2% 48 2015-2016
30.6% 147 2014-2015
28.9% 39 2013-2014
20.9% 91 2012-2013
28.9% 114 2011-2012

DEFENSE

  • Bends his knees to get down in a stance and has several lateral slides to stay in front of similarly sized players in isolation, though doesn’t use his 211-pound frame to chest up and contain dribble penetration through contact.
  • Puts in the effort to slide around off ball screens and chase shooters around the second side of the floor. Works hard to deny on dribble-handoffs.
  • Gets caught ball watching and gives up backdoor cuts from time-to-time but generally can execute the scheme as a weak-side defender: attentive enough to switch on the fly, rotates in to pick up the roll man, positions himself to guard two opponents off ball, steps up to help protect the rim when he is positioned as the last line of defense;
    • Good instincts and reactions to get into passing lanes: 1.6 steals per 40 minutes last season;
    • Contributes some on the defensive glass: collected 12.6% of opponents’ misses when he was on the floor.
  • So-so at closeouts: sometimes flies by but there are also times when he is able to run the shooter off his shot and stay balanced.
  • Can credibly pick up smaller players on switches: works to go over screens at the point of attack and hustles in pursuit to challenge shots or passes from behind.
  • Can credibly pick up bigger players on switches: tenacious enough to front the post and box out whomever is close by.

OUTLOOK

Kulagin is a very interesting player: a wing who can run offense and create for others in volume due to the versatility of his passing, while also being able to credibly defend different types of players. Someone with that combination of skills can be very valuable these days, as a chess piece who can unlock lineups in both sides of the extremes in terms of size.

His inability to make a shot is what’s preventing him from being considered a potential impact player at higher levels, though. His true shooting percentage was only about average this past year because he got to the foul line in volume and hit 82.6% of his free throws but the team still scored more efficiently without him on the floor both in the Eurocup[2] and the VTB United League[3].


[1] According to RealGM

[2] According to RealGM

[3] According to RealGM

EDITOR’S NOTE: Rafael Uehara is the managing editor of ‘Basketball Scouting’. More of his work can be found here or at RealGM, where he is a regular contributor. He can be followed on twitter as @rafael_uehara

Will Clyburn Scouting Report

CONTEXT

Will Clyburn is a 28-year-old[1] veteran who is said to want to sign with an NBA team this offseason after spending his five years as a pro accumulating 7,221minutes of experience in the German BBL, the Israeli BSL, the Turkish BSL, the VTB United League, the Eurochallenge, the Eurocup and the Euroleague[2].

Most recently, the six-foot-six versatile wing averaged 19 points per 40 minutes on 57.4% true shooting and compiled a 17.2 PER in 64 appearances for CSKA Moscow last season – as a key cog on the team that won the VTB United League and made the Euroleague Final Four.

The Detroit native had a multi-dimensional role within CSKA’s motion offense, having the chance to do a little bit of everything. Other than spacing the floor, he got plenty of chances to isolate out of ball reversals, post-up smaller matchups and run small-small pick-and-pops designed to get him downhill on straight line drives.

On the other end, the Iowa State alum looks the part and can do his job reasonably well in aspects related to movement but disappointed with his lack of physicality against power wings or bigger players and doesn’t leverage his athleticism to fly around creating events, though his rebounding was a saving grace.

OFFENSE

Clyburn took only 25.9% of his shots from three-point range last season but that’s still the most important part of his game.

He has an unorthodox release that looks like a catapult at times but the ball went in enough for him to effective as an open shot shooter this past year – nailing 40.8% of his three-point shots, though at a pace of just 3.5 such attempts per 40 minutes.

Clyburn gets little elevation off the ground but his release point leads to a high arcing shot, so he is able to shoot over on-ball contests and closeouts more often than not.

That was a dot outside the curve, though. The previous four years Clyburn hit just 29.3% of his 556 three-point shots.

As is, the majority of his value comes via his ability to create for himself off the dribble. He can grab-and-go off defensive rebounds to trigger offense or just take his man one-and-one in no-pass possessions.

Clyburn doesn’t have an explosive first step and his handle is pretty basic. But he is faster than you’d expected with the ball and has shown to be somewhat resourceful getting into the lane or creating separation.

Clyburn can pivot into a well coordinated spin move in a pinch and has shown some shiftiness unleashing between-the-legs crossovers to shift directions and shake his man off balance. He is also strong enough thanks to his 210-pound frame to maintain his balance and his momentum forward through contact.

Clyburn is a capable shot-maker on step-back pull-ups but does most of his damage getting all the way to the basket. Besides getting by his man in isolation, he can also do it via small-small pick-and-pops that open up driving lanes for him to get downhill and attack the last line of defense from a position of strength – earning 6.6 foul shots per 40 minutes last season.

Clyburn can go up strong off two feet with some space to load up and play above the rim as a target for lobs sneaking behind the defense on backdoor cuts but is a rim-level finisher going up off the dribble. He can adjust his body in the air, has nice touch over-extending on finger-roll finishes with either hand and proved he is able to do it through contact.

Clyburn also has a righty floater to score over length from the in-between area, overall hitting 49.6% of his 405 two-point shots last season.

He can make a kick-out pass over the top in traffic but has rarely shown anything particularly impressive in terms of court vision on the move – assisting on just 11.3% of CSKA’s scores when he was on the floor last season.

Clyburn can also dribble his way into posting up smaller matchups from time-to-time. He is more often than not only looking for a basic right-handed hook, though, and has so-so feel against double teams as well.

DEFENSE

Clyburn hunches rather than bends his knees getting down in a stance but can move laterally reasonably well to stay in front of similarly-sized players and contest pull-ups as well as he can in isolation.

He struggled holding his ground against power wings in the post, though. Due to that lack of physicality and toughness, he is not a good option to pick up bigger players on switches regularly.

Clyburn is also not suited to chase shooters around the floor, as he doesn’t play with enough intensity in pursuit and can’t slide around picks cleanly. That inability to navigate screens also prevents him from being an option to cross-match or pick up smaller players on switches regularly.

He can be relied on to execute the scheme, as he is attentive enough to reverse switches on the fly, to his responsibilities coming off the weak-side to help crowd the area near the basket and can pick up the eventual shot block once in a blue moon – averaging 0.5 blocks per 40 minutes last season.

His instincts to leverage his length and athletic ability making plays in the passing lanes were fairly disappointing (1.1 steals per 40 minutes) but Clyburn did put in the effort pitching in on the glass, taking advantage of the excellent boxout work by Kyle Hines, Andrey Vorotsevich and Semen Antonov – collecting 20.5% of opponents’ misses when he was on the floor last season.


[1] DOB: 5/17/1990

[2] According to RealGM

EDITOR’S NOTE: Rafael Uehara is the managing editor of ‘Basketball Scouting’. More of his work can be found here or at RealGM, where he is a regular contributor. He can be followed on twitter as @rafael_uehara

James Nunnally Scouting Report

CONTEXT

James Nunnally is a 27-year-old[1] veteran who is expected to sign with an NBA team this offseason after spending his six years as a pro accumulating 7,204 minutes of experience in the G-League, the Greek HEBA 1, the Puerto Rican BSN, the Israeli BSL, the Spanish ACB, the Italian Lega A, the Turkish BSL and the Euroleague[2].

Most recently, the six-foot-seven sharpshooter averaged 18.8 points per 40 minutes on 67% effective shooting and compiled an 18.3 PER in 56 appearances for Fenerbahçe last season, as a key cog on the team that won the Turkish BSL and made it to the Euroleague title game.

His primary role on offense was as a weak-side floor-spacer – logging just 20.2% usage rate and taking 54.5% of his live-ball attempts from three-point range, though the Stockton, California native also proved he is able to run side pick-and-roll to keep the offense moving, turn the corner off a hand-off and post up smaller matchups in a pinch.

On the other end, he acted as a weak-side defender for the most part and proved he can be relied on to execute the scheme but Fenerbahçe switched quite aggressively towards the end of the season, so the University of California at Santa Barbara alum also got to defend smaller players somewhat regularly, which he didn’t prove to be particularly well-suited for.

SHOOTING

Nunnally fully extends himself for a high release and has a quick enough trigger to get his catch-and-shoot three-pointers off prior to closeouts, though he didn’t seem as capable when a lengthy defender forced him to rush through his mechanics.

He took some shots relocating after getting into the lane and kicking out, as well as drifting around the wing and to the corner. Nunnally also looks good taking one-dribble pull-ups off an escape dribble against flyby closeouts.

But his best work is still off spot-ups, as he hasn’t shown to have the body flexibility and a dynamic enough release to be asked to take tough shots on the move often.

Nunnally nailed 45.4% of his 847 three-point shots over the last five seasons, at a pace of 6.8 such attempts per 40 minutes, including 52% of his 400 looks from beyond the arc these past couple of years. He also hit 86.8% of his 448 free throws during the five-year span.

OFF DRIBBLE OFFENSE

Nunnally can run side pick-and-roll to keep the offense moving and proved adept at taking dribble-in pull-ups off hop footwork and snaking his way around the screen to create separation for step-back pull-ups.

He keeps his dribble alive and also showed enough court vision to make crosscourt passes to the opposite side – assisting on 13.9% of Fenerbahçe’s scores when he was on the floor last season.

Nunnally can get all the way to the basket on straight line drives curling off dribble-handoffs. Though he is not an explosive leaper off one foot or two feet in traffic and can act as an up-and-down finisher, Nunnally can over-extend for finger-roll layups, proved to be strong enough to finish on his way down and has a running floater to score over length from the in-between area.

He also flashed the ability to dribble into post-ups against smaller matchups, most often looking to pass out of it to a shooter sprinting to an open spot or set up a basic turnaround lean-in jumper.

DEFENSE

Nunnally does OK defending his own position for the most part.

He can bend his knees to get down in a stance, has multiple lateral slides in him to stay in front of similarly sized players in isolation and can use the strength in his 220-pound frame to play stout post defense against power wings – suggesting he could be an option to steal some minutes as the second biggest player on the floor in smaller lineups, which he wasn’t asked to do at Fenerbahçe.

Nunally also proved he can be relied on to stunt-and-recover when Fenerbahçe had its big men hedging against the pick-and-roll and can use his length to get into passing lanes for some takeaways – averaging 1.4 steals per 40 minutes last season.

His contribution on the glass was fairly disappointing, though – as he collected just 11% of opponents’ misses when he was on the floor last season. He struggles to chase shooters off screens as well – lacking the foot speed and the type of body frame suited to slide around picks cleanly.

That also proved to be a problem when Nunnally picked up smaller players on switches. He bends his knees to get down in a stance but is unable to go over screens at the point of attack, gets blown by an unsettling amount in isolation and doesn’t hustle in pursuit to try challenging shots and passes from behind.


[1] DOB: 7/14/1990

[2] According to RealGM

EDITOR’S NOTE: Rafael Uehara is the managing editor of ‘Basketball Scouting’. More of his work can be found here or at RealGM, where he is a regular contributor. He can be followed on twitter as @rafael_uehara