June 19, 2017
Position: Centre / Power Forward
Position: Centre / Power Forward
Date of birth: 20/Dec/1995
Current club: Gran Canaria
Another 7ft 2″ Power Forward born in 1995 to come out of Latvia after Kristaps Porzingis was taken 4th in 2015. Anzejs won’t go quite so high, but he will be a legitimate lottery prospect in next weeks NBA draft. A mobile 7 footer who can shoot it and finish inside, his long distance shot isnt quite as good as Kristaps but he has been known to knock it down from deep across the ACB and Eurocup this season.
His 58% from three is incredibly impressive but translates to just 7/12 in the ACB and compared with 17% or 1/6 in Eurocup play. His inside shooting is far superior across the board hitting 72% in Eurocup and 66% in ACB play. This inside shooting has a far higher example hitting on 136 of 201 attempts across the board impressive even for a big man.
Across ACB games his free throw % has been promising as well, hitting on 62% or 49/79, again not bad for a big man but not quite at the level of Kristaps who was putting up far superior numbers in Europe 3 seasons ago despite being younger than Pasecniks.
Currently a few key areas flag up for me looking at a 7ft 2″ prospect.. in the ACB this season he has pulled down just 3.1 rebounds per game, and 2.8 in Eurocup play!
While averaging near 14 minutes per game in Eurocup and 16 minutes in the ACB. In addition to the relatively low rebound numbers he also grabs just 0.7 & 0.6 blocks across the two competitions! Kristaps was averaging 4.8 rebounds and 1 block per game at the age of 19, I realise Kristaps had more minutes but its hard not to compare these two prospects. And right now Pasecniks just isn’t stacking up to Porzingis.
Another concern is his 220 weight, pretty small for a big man, hes a pretty similar weight to Porzingis when he came into the NBA and scouts were worried that he would get bullied in the NBA. Pasecniks will have similar issues and will need to prove himself in pre-draft workouts.
Looking like a second round prospect across a few Draft Boards, Draft Express has him as a first round prospect going to the Euro-Friendly Portland Trailblazers with the 26th pick, while NBA Draft.Net has him dropping to 46th overall to the Philadelphia 76’ers.
One Bleacher Report mock draft updated before the combine had Pasecniks at 19th overall to the Atlanta Hawks. While Fansided has Pasecniks as one of the better center’s in this years draft class.
I think Pasecniks is a first round prospect, I know he has some areas that need work, but seriously.. watch this and tell me you don’t like what you see..
Anzejs Pasecniks does not move like your typical 7’3 guy. Showing very impressive stuff here at his Pro Day. pic.twitter.com/BU2VZBzQlG
— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) June 3, 2017
Will he be the next Kristaps? no he’s a different type of player with more lithe build and a different kind of stroke, but will he be a starting caliber C for an NBA team? Yes, and a team low in the draft with the option to let him develop as a big man that can come off the bench and contribute, aka the Spurs or the Utah Jazz, then I take the gamble on this big man.
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This post was published on June 19, 2017