Argentine point guard Nicolas Laprovíttola was the most impressive player on Flamengo’s two-game Intercontinental series against Maccabi Tel Aviv last week.
Flamengo runs the same base offense we see in most NBA and high level European teams; high pick-and-roll up top, with the ball handler either looking for the pocket pass or to draw a help defender and pass it to the corner off dribble penetration or shovel pass to the opposite wing if he’s iced to the side, with that spot-up shooter either taking the three-pointer, attacking a closeout or touch passing to the strong side corner.
And Laprovíttola impressed as the engine of that offense, which scored 156 points on 140 possessions against the Euroleague champions.
He’s not particularly explosive but showed decent speed on straight line drives and has a tight handle dribbling from side to side to get into the lane, mostly looking to pass off dribble penetration. Laprovíttola is a good passer off the bounce, showing the presence of mind to simply throw the ball around the basket area for his big men to finish when crowded and possessing good vision to pass crosscourt when iced to the side due to his six-foot-four height. He assisted on six of Flamengo’s 30 field-goals in the second game and 27% of the team’s scores in his 1,393 minutes in the Brazilian league and the Liga Americas last season.
He also looked attentive to dribbling low in traffic to avoid getting stripped, turning it over just five times in his 58 total minutes against Maccabi, but has otherwise been turnover prone most of his career, posting a 19% turnover rate last season and over 20% in his two previous seasons in the Argentine league.
Laprovíttola’s scoring comes mostly out of his shooting. He didn’t do it well against Maccabi – missing 11 of his 14 three-point attempts – but 110 of his 196 field-goals last season were three-pointers, hitting them on 42.8% efficiency. Laprovíttola is a bit methodical setting up his shot off the dribble and doesn’t elevate much off the ground but has a generally quick release and good mechanics. He hit 40.2% of his 596 three-point attempts over the last three seasons.
He is not a high leaper and doesn’t have much strength to absorb contact in the air but possesses a floater to finish against length within close range and is a savvy player who looks for contact. Laprovíttola hit his 182 two-point attempts in the Brazilian league and the Liga Americas at a 47.2% clip and averaged almost five free throw attempts per 36 minutes.
Laprovíttola struggled to defend Jeremy Pargo in isolation, lacking the lateral mobility to stay in front and the strength to contain dribble penetration through contact the few times he did. He worked hard to go over the screens on the pick-and-roll, though, and did a generally good job to stay alive in these plays. Laprovíttola is merely average generating steals and contributing on the defensive glass, which limits his impact on this end. Flamengo allowed two points per 100 possessions more with him in the lineup in comparison to overall last season.
Editor’s Note: 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.