7-footer, Stretch Big

Nemanja Aleksandrov Scouting Report

Nemanja Aleksandrov has fully transformed into a pure stretch-four. After taking 102 three-point attempts in 879 minutes with Verviers-Pepinster and Basquet Manresa in the 2012-2013 season, Aleksandrov took 176 in 1,189 minutes in his first season with EWE Baskets Oldenburg in the German league, the Eurocup and the Euroleague qualifier last season. Always sharing the court with one of pure centers Phillipp Neumann or Adam Chubb, he upped his three-point rate to 42.7% from 32.8% the year before.

Aleksandrov is a good set shooter, with a quick release and an excellent follow through. He has very good balance jumping up and down but sometimes throws himself out of rhythm by extending one of his legs to try drawing a foul. The ball doesn’t go in as much as it should, though. Aleksandrov hit his three-pointers at a 34.7% clip last season, which hurt his impact as Oldenburg scored at a better per-possession rate without him than with him on the floor in the Eurocup and about the same in the German league.

He operated almost entirely from the perimeter in the half-court, rarely getting post touches and a general non-factor on the glass. He adapted his body to a more lean frame (currently listed at 220 pounds) in order to more fluidly move from spot to spot around the wing but turned into a poor screener who rarely looks to draw contact and opponents can easily go around. Aleksandrov is a capable passer, with soft hands and a very high vantage thanks to his seven-foot height but posted only 49 assists in 53 games because his purpose on Oldenburg’s offense was as finisher, only getting the ball in position to shoot or hand off to a guard and reset the play.

Aleksandrov is a functional team defender; quite attentive to his help responsibilities and with great timing rotating inside to contain dribble penetration and protect the rim thanks to his mobility. He is not, however, a shot blocker and also not very effective on closeouts as his lean frame and short wingspan (six-foot-11) don’t really disrupt shooters when he is running at them. Aleksandrov is a very weak post defender, unable to hold ground against more physical types. Deon Thompson absolutely took advantage of him in the series against Bayern Müenchen. Though not particularly disciplined boxing out opponents, he posted an average defensive rebounding rate in both leagues due to his activity. Oldenburg still defended statistically better without him than with him on the floor in the Eurocup but about the same in the German league.

Editor’s Note: Huge thanks to Jannes Schäffer from court-side.de for providing video that made this evaluation possible. Court-side.de is a website that focuses on analytics for the German league and it’s highly recommended a look. Jannes can be followed on twitter @courtsideBBL.

Statistical data for this post was researched at basketball.realgm.com.

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

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