Jan Vesely didn’t expand his skill-set at all in his second season with Fenerbahçe.
Though he shows glimpses of a turnaround, fadeaway jump-shot every once in a while, Vesely still doesn’t have a lot of skill to operate from the low post. His footwork is clumsy, his touch on turnaround hooks isn’t much and he has no power moves. He’s functional trying to burn smaller players on switches on an island but not such a killer that the opponent should fear him when he has his back to the basket.
Vesely has proven able to pass out of the block when unchallenged but still struggles against double teams and hasn’t shown much ability to catch the ball at the foul out of the short roll and take a couple of dribbles on his way to the basket or assist spot-up shooters, lacking the sort of coordination needed to make such plays – posting a 0.99 assist-to-turnover ratio last season, according to RealGM.
And since returning to Europe, Vesely is no longer any sort of outside threat from outside, as he never spots up beyond the arc or pops to a spot in the perimeter out of the ball-screen anymore. His foul shooting continues to be unreliable.
But he remains a plus on offense as a constant threat around the basket, thanks to his athletic ability. Though his hands catching the ball in traffic and his touch on non-dunk finishes are so-so, Vesely can play above the rim as a target for lobs, pursues the ball with great energy, has a (rumored) seven-foot-six wingspan to rebound outside of his area and second-jump-ability to fight for 50-50 balls.
He finished his 454 two-point shots at a 60.5% clip and collected 11.2% of Fenerbahçe’s misses when he was on the floor last season.
On the other end, Vesely does best close to the rim as well. He is not a particularly instinctive help defender but on easy rotations, he is a threat to block shots around the basket, elevating out of one foot coming off the weak-side or two feet stepping into the front of the rim and utilizing his length.
But Vesely also lacks polish at this side of the court as well. He is prone to leaving his feet and making himself vulnerable to getting blown by or fouling, as he averaged 4.8 personal fouls per 40 minutes last season. Dropping back in pick-and-roll coverage, Vesely still doesn’t play under control enough, sometimes getting himself out of position due to his hyperactivity.
Defending opposing big men in the post, Vesely lacks strength to hold ground and needs to front. He is attentive to his boxout responsibilities but can get pushed out of the way by bulkier true centers.
And despite being a sick athlete, Vesely is not suited to defend away from the basket. He can keep pace with smaller players on straight-line drives but can’t get low in a stance and stay in front of such players when they shake him side-to-side.
Editor’s Note: Rafael Uehara is the managing editor of ‘Basketball Scouting’. More of his work can be found here or at Upside & Motor and at RealGM, where he is a regular contributor. He can be followed on twitter as @rafael_uehara