Cedi Osman Scouting Report


ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported yesterday that Cleveland reached an agreement with Cedi Osman on a three-year, $8.3 million deal. The Turkish wing was the 31st pick of the 2015 Draft and has accumulated 4,860 minutes of EuroLeague and Turkish BSL[1] experience for Anadolu Efes over the last four years.

Efes always built expensive teams that sought to compete for titles[2] during his tenure there, so the 22-year-old[3] transfers to the United States accustomed to playing a complementary role, as he was not given much opportunity to expand his skill-set as a shot creator.

The six-foot-eight, 215-pounder was consistently used as an off ball floor spacer, who flashed some ability to make shots on the go but who was not moved around the floor to leverage the threat of his shot a whole lot. He was for the most part a standstill weak-side spot-up threat but merely a capable one at that.

The team did try stretching him a little defensively, using his combination of size, length and quickness to have him defend smaller players at the point of attack at times but he hasn’t yet developed into a real asset at that. He also lacks the strength to play up and defend bigger players at this point of his development.

Combining unimpressive shot making with defense that didn’t particularly move the needle, Osman’s on/off metrics were pretty bad among Europe’s elite last season. According to overbasket.com, Efes was -70 with him in the lineup and +49 with him on the bench against EuroLeague competition.


Osman got the ball in the post against smaller wings and point guards from time to time, where he looked to back them down for short-range makes and even flashed a turnaround short jumper leaning into his defender.

Osman has also shown he can run a side pick-and-roll to keep the offense moving and even take advantage of a scrambling defense that allows him to the get to the middle, as he’s able to play with pace off the ball-screen and make a pocket pass.

If left unchallenged in emergencies late in the shot clock, he can step into an uncontested pull-up three-pointer off middle high pick-and-roll as well.

But for the most part Osman didn’t show much in terms of being able to create shots against a set defense. Having not shown a particularly diverse set of dribble moves yet, he is only a straight-line driver who doesn’t have an explosive first step to get by his man on speed and struggles to turn the corner.

As was the case, Osman had no shot creation responsibility, logging only 20% usage-rate and assisting on just 7% of Efes’ scores when he was on the floor last season – according to RealGM.

He sprinted around staggered screens some and proved himself able to make shots relocating to the next open spot around the perimeter but mostly acted as a standstill spot-up threat, providing floor spacing for Thomas Heurtel’s and Jayson Granger’s pick-and-rolls.

Osman releases the ball from the front of his forehead but gets good elevation and the ball comes out easy. His trigger seems reasonably quick but he struggles when he is rushed and his misses can look particularly gruesome.

Osman nailed 36.4% of his 735 three-point shots over the last four seasons but it’s questionable how much of that can translate to the United States right away, given the further out three-point line. He also still has room to improve in terms of getting open, sending his three-pointers up at a pace of 6.7 attempts per 40 minutes last season[4].

Osman looks fluid attacking closeouts and has some explosiveness elevating out of one foot on free paths to the goal, though the floater he’s shown to score over rim protection from the in-between area is perhaps for impressive. He hasn’t yet developed dexterity getting to the foul line, as he averaged just 3.5 free throws per 40 minutes last season, but converted his two-pointers at a 54.7% clip.


Osman is a decent one-position defender who makes tangible contributions.

He can slide laterally to keep pace with similarly sized wings in isolation defense, lacking the strength to contain penetration but using his length to contest shots effectively, and he can run shooters off the three-point line a fair amount with his closeouts.

Osman can also execute the scheme — proving himself attentive to his responsibilities rotating inside to bump the roll man, looking to guard two players when Efes packed the strong-side against a pick-and-roll and getting to the front of the basket when he was called upon to act as the last line of defense.

Osman’s shot blocks are mostly of the exciting chasedown variety in transition but he can make plays in the half-court using his length in the passing lanes and pitching in on the defensive glass, averaging 1.9 steals per 40 minutes and collecting 14.8% of opponents’ misses when he was on the floor last season.

He hasn’t yet developed a lot of versatility, though.

Osman was asked to defend smaller players at the point of attack from time to time but didn’t show to be particularly good at it. He puts in the effort to go over ball-screens and recover to his man quickly but struggles to navigate picks cleanly. As is the case, he stresses his big man to extend to the top of the key to prevent the ball-handler from turning the corner right away or pulling up from deep range uncontested, increasing the chances of a breakdown behind the play. Olympiacos went out of its way to seek him and put him in the pick-and-roll in the fourth quarter of game three of the EuroLeague quarterfinals.

In individual defense, Osman kind of hunches rather than bends his knees to get low in a stance, so smaller players have been able to go around him despite his lateral agility – something that figures to be a bigger problem in the US.

Given his height and length, Osman has room to develop into someone who can play as the second biggest player for his team in smaller lineups but lacks the strength and toughness to do so at this point of his development.

[1] Which Next-Step Basketball ranks as the second best domestic league in Europe

[2] Though they haven’t been particularly successful at that

[3] Who only turns 23 next April

[4] Osman will have a great opportunity at that watching Kyle Korver work from up close

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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