Precious Achiuwa Scouting Report

CONTEXT

  • 17th-ranked prospect in the 2019 high school class[1];
  • Played his senior season of high school at Montverde Academy;
  • One of five top 100 recruits joining Memphis, with coach Penny Hardaway landing the top-ranked class in the country[2];
  • About to turn 20 in September[3];
  • Six-foot-nine combo forward with the combination of frame (225 pounds[4]) and length (six-foot-11 wingspan[5]) the NBA looks for in its big wings from a physical profile-standpoint;
  • Got some chances to go at his man one-on-one on offense and was relied to show his versatility on occasion on defense but had a weakside role for the most part on both ends at Montverde Academy;
  • Has shown glimpses of developing perimeter skills but still mostly does best when he is able to leverage his athleticism in transition, on cuts and via straight line drives against a scrambling defense;
  • Puts in decent effort on defense for a teenager – rotates regularly, has quick leaping ability to make some plays at the rim, rebounds, gets in a stance and moves his feet in isolation, contests shots, and has shown flashes of being able to switch onto smaller players.

OFFENSE

  • Has good ball skills to grab-and-go off a defensive rebound – can take it end-to-end or slow transition into an isolation in the half-court, yet to shown much in terms of triggering offense or running a middle high pick-and-roll;
  • Fast and fluid sprinting without the ball in the open court and can play above the rim as a target for lobs in transition;
  • Has a lot of room to develop in terms of handle and coordination through contact but has shown some decent moves to create his own shot one-on-one;
    • Can pivot into a well-coordinated spin move against soft defense;
    • Has shown a little bit of an in-and-out dribble to attempt shaking his defender off balance and can crossover into his pull-up;
  • Hasn’t yet developed a lot of dexterity pulling up in rhythm but can take a smooth-looking stop-and-pop pull-up if left totally uncontested;
  • Has only shown iffy touch on floaters off 1-2 footwork;
  • Can attack the basket with good balance and explosiveness on straight line drives against a scrambling defense;
    • Can go up with power off one foot off momentum;
    • Is flexible enough to adjust his body in the air;
    • Can finish through contact;
    • Hasn’t yet shown much in terms of a versatile finishing package in traffic;
  • Hasn’t yet developed a patient approach in the post;
    • Doesn’t often play with enough intensity to try setting a deep seal;
    • Looks mostly for quick hooks with his inside hand;
  • Spaced out to the three-point line a fair amount – can make a shot with time and space to go through his motion but still a hesitant shooter for the most part;
    • Slow release, not yet consistently fluid;
    • Decent elevation but low release out in front;
    • Touch needs to improve;
    • Tends to miss short;
    • Missed 14 of his 18 three-point shots and hit just 53.7% of his 54 free throws in eight appearances with AAU squad New Heights at the Under Armour Association last season[6];
  • Flirted with taking some shots on the move – flashing to the foul line and even sprinting off a pindown for a three-pointer – but doesn’t yet have enough fluidity in his release for those types of shots;
  • Showed flashes of instinctive cutting and figures to be an asset playing above the rim as a target for lobs sneaking behind the defense.
    • Should be used as a diver in pick-and-roll more often but wasn’t at Monteverde and probably won’t be at Memphis, as he figures to share the court with James Wiseman regularly and it’s really rare to see 1-4 pick-and-roll in college basketball;
  • Has shown to be a willing passer operating from inside zones but is yet to show particularly impressive court vision at this point of his development.

DEFENSE

  • Hustles back in transition and can pick up the occasional chase-down block;
  • Was active rotating off the weakside to make plays at the basket;
    • Quick leaper off two feet to challenge shots via verticality;
    • Averaged 3.5 blocks per 40 minutes in eight appearances at the Under Armour Association;
    • Prone to biting on shot fakes from time-to-time;
  • Helps off the strongside just as aggressively – unclear if given the freedom to do it, considering the poor level of outside shooting at the high school level, or if he was in fact breaking basic help defense rules;
  • Hasn’t yet developed the feel for using his length to help clog driving lanes;
  • Doesn’t fly around to create events in the passing lanes;
  • Bends his knees to get down in a stance defending on the ball, has a few lateral slides in him to stay in front of similarly sized players in isolation and puts in the effort to contest pull-ups;
    • Has shown impressive quickness contesting a pull-up and then chasing after a long rebound;
  • Picked up some smaller players on switches on a few occasions – can keep pace with them on straight line drives out in space and puts in the work to go over picks at the point of attack but needs to improve his hustle in pursuit chasing them to bother or discourage shots from behind;
    • Could maybe be an option to crossmatch onto smaller players for entire possessions?
  • Struggles negotiating multiple picks chasing shooters around the floor;
  • Hustles on closeouts – contests catch-and-shoot’s effectively thanks to his length but is yet to show killer speed running the shooter off the line consistently;
  • Can become more physical but is attentive enough to his boxout responsibilities and has shown decent quickness chasing the ball off the rim at the high school and AAU levels;
    • Collected 23.1% of opponents’ misses in his 194 minutes at the Under Armour Association last season.

[1] According to ESPN

[2] According to ESPN

[3] DOB: 9/19/1999

[4] According to Memphis’ official listing

[5] According to Draft Express

[6] 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

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