2007 Reebok Eurocamp: Player Evaluations
By Aran Smith
Here is a look at the top prospects from the 2007 Reebok Eurocamp. This year's camp featured a number of future NBA talents with prospects that will be drafted this year and in future years. Here's a list of the top prospects by long term NBA potential.
[img_assist|nid=3822|title=Victor Claver|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=300|height=400]1. Victor Claver 6’10” 236 SF Spain 1988 -- Claver is the most impressive long term prospect from this year's camp. He has a tremendous head for the game. Very tough and smart and he seems to be improving each day. He didn't put up huge numbers, but the talent and skill level is apparent. He can shoot out to 3 point range, runs the floor especially well and has nice leaping ability and length. His attitude and desire give him a great shot to be an excellent NBA player someday. He lacks tremendous lateral foot speed, but it's not horrible. He's already playing well on the senior level and should really break out next season based on the drastic recent improvement he's made.
2. Marco Belinelli 6’5” SG 1986 Italy *Early Entry-Draft -- Played for the first 2 days of the camp and did fairly well. He was a little trigger happy in the first game, but a lot of shots rimmed out. The general consensus among scouts was that nothing has really changed with regard to his draft status. He's seen as a mid to late first rounder. He looked unexcited to be in camp, and the thought was that even with a great performance in games, scouts would point to the fact that he was playing against younger and inferior talent. It would have been interesting to see what he could have done in Orlando. Belinelli's shot was not on the first day, but his overall feel and passing during the camp left a solid impression. The top player right now, and second only to Claver for potential.
3. Rodrigue Beaubois 6’2” 168 PG France 1988 *Early Entry-Draft -- Surely a name for the future, Beaubois (pronounced Bow-Bwah) has a 6'9 wingspan on a 6'2 frame. He's extremely quick and explosive and competed hard in the first and only day he played. He's got a bit of a sling action on his jumpshot, but his touch seems good. Scouts compared him to Rajon Rondo due to his quickness and athleticism, although his shooting shows more [img_assist|nid=3823|title=Ali Traore and Rodrigue Beaubois|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=450|height=338]potential. He reminded me a lot of Arizona bound PG Brandon Jennings (rising high school senior) with the same swagger on the floor. He suffered a hamstring injury the second day which kept him out of the rest of the camp. Beaubois is a specimen with great attributes to play the point guard position. His arms make him play like a 6'5" guy and his vision and passing is solid. He still has a long long ways to go in figuring out the point guard position as it is the toughest to master, but he's on his way to becoming a future first round pick. Beaubois might have the most upside, but right now there's a long way to go, so he has to earn it.
4. Boban Marjanovic 7’3” 272 C Serbia 1988 -- Boban was the hit of the camp. Not only is he 7'3" with a 7'8" wingspan, (9'8" standing reach) but he runs the court fairly well and has nice form on his shot. He's a wonderful kid, all of the coaches and scouts were really impressed with his demeanor. He's always got a smile on his face and [img_assist|nid=3824|title=Boban Marjanovic|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=300|height=389]wants to learn. He still struggles to gather the ball at times but when he gets it in low, it usually results in a dunk. Pavel Podkolzine was the 21st pick in the draft and is now seen as a bust who probably won't ever play in the league. While this is unsubstantiated, a number of scouts mentioned they felt Boban probably has the same "giantism" disorder. So whether Boban undergoes surgery or takes medication to remedy the problem remains to be seen. Boban surely has first round potential if he continues to improve.
5. Rudy Mbemba 5'11" 187 PG Sweden 1987 -- Playing with all the giants in camp, everyone looks short, but especially Mbemba. He officially measured 6-feet but that doesn't seem possible as he looks more like 5'6 with all the 7 footers. What Mbemba has is insane quickness. He is among the quickest guards anywhere, right in the same category with the Parker's, Barbosa's and TJ Ford's. One scout compared him to Barry Sanders. He is also one of the most exciting players you will see, as he loves to dunk on bigger players and tries to all the time. His point guard skills have really shown improvement in the past year, but he still must cut down on turnovers. He is a lot more effective playing against younger players like here in camp, so improving with his Frankfurt Skyliners Team in the next year is important.
The Next Five
Jakub Wojciechowski 7'1" 213 PF/C Poland 1990 -- Polish player with a lot of upside. Wojciechowski is just 17 and in a tremendous basketball environment to improve. His touch and mechanics on his shot are very good and he had no trouble with the size and strength of the older kids in camp. If he gets stronger and improves his skill level, his upside is sky high.
Giorgos Printezis 6’9” 223 SF Greece 1985 Draft Eligible -- Printezis impressed all week with his tremendous attitude and work ethic. He doesn't know any other speed than all out. He has especially strong one-on-one skills for a European player, and knocks down the mid range jumper with consistency.His lateral foot speed is a little below average, but overall an excellent athlete and a solid second round pick who could be NBA ready in 2-3 seasons.
Alexandr Rindin 7’4” 246 C 1985 Draft Eligible -- Rindin has really improved in the past year. He can actually get up and down the court pretty well and he's competing. He's very long and skinny, but has put some weight on and seems like he can add more. He's not overly aggressive, and slow off his feet but seems to enjoy defending and blocking shots and has become pretty good at it. Based on his potential, Rindin has an excellent shot to get drafted.
Anton Ponkrashov 6’7” 208 PG/SG Russia 1986 -- Ponkrashov received a lot of hype from some of the coaches and scouts at the beginning of the camp. Some felt he's the best overall prospect in the camp, but he may be the flavor of the month to an extent. While he has tremendous vision and passing for a 6'7 player, his decision making and ability to score and distribute are just average. He's a very outgoing kid, which is truly essential for a Russian player, and something that gives him a chance. He also measured a surprising 7'0 wingspan. Reece Gaines was taken in the mid first round based on his ability to handle the point position with such great size. But without the ability to make others better and limited offensive talent, the size and PG ability went to waste. Ponkrashov is not much different from Gaines.
Ali Traore 6’9” 254 PF 1985 Draft Eligible -- Overall Traore wasn't as impressive as he'd been in Orlando. Some of that may have had to do with a lack of great passers and point guards on his team. He averaged 14 ppg in Orlando, second overall to Coleman Collins in Orlando. Traore is a real outgoing guy, he has a lot of energy and gives good effort. He had a solid showing in the 3/4 sprint but looks a little rigid running the floor. He's got a chiseled physique like his idol Carlos Boozer. His offensive skill level seems unorthodox and still needs some work, but his bulk and length (7'3" wingspan) help him. He should get drafted somewhere in the mid second round.
The Next Ten
Joao Gomes 6’8” 208 SG/SF 1985 Draft Eligible -- Physically Gomes looks the part as with the braids and body he reminds you of Latrell Sprewell. He was a completely different player the first three days compared to the last day. He's a very nice kid and some felt he was too nice on the court as he lacked aggressiveness. Many scouts noted that they felt playing in Portugal the past 3 years has stunted his basketball development. He lacks great skills on the perimeter, although his handle and shot are decent. He doesn't set up his own shot and can't use the dribble well enough to get to the rim consistently. His rebounding is maybe his best attribute as he crashes the glass hard and has a great set of arms (6'10" wingspan). He was the final cut from the top 10, and has put himself into draft consideration with his huge 26 point final day performance.
Milovan Rakovic 6’10” 269 PF 1985 Draft Eligible -- He's an absolute bull, very ornery demeanor and also has above average athleticism, with solid explosiveness. In his mind he's never wrong. He's the type of personality that never quits, never backs down as he seems to think every call a ref makes against him or bad pass he makes is not his fault. His toughness and strength could make him a nice NBA role player some day. He seems to really love contact and establishes position inside extremely well. Lacks a great offensive game but doesn't try to do much outside of rebound and score inside.
Mantas Ruikis 6’7” 209 SG 1985 Draft Eligible -- Ruikis never made a rim rocking dunk or blew anyone away with his athleticism. But he's a heady player who plays hard every game out. He's got good size, but lacks much length with a 6'3" wingspan. He has a high basketball IQ and runs the floor well. He could be a guy NBA teams look at with the last few selections in the second round as his potential to develop into an NBA role player is apparent.
Mantas Kalnietis 6’6” 201 PG/SG Lithuania 1986 -- Best known for his stint at starting point guard for the Lithuanian National Team as their at the 2006 World Championships in Japan. Kalnietis is not a natural point guard and struggles to make great decisions. He is very aggressive taking the ball to the basket, but really struggles with his shot selection. He seems to force shots with defenders on him, and his shooting numbers and effectiveness really suffers.
Javier Rey 6'10" 243 PF/C Spain 1987 -- Missed the last two days with an injury. Rey impressed with his length and energy. He isn't an elite level athlete or prospect, but he seems to have a solid grasp of what he needs to do to contribute. He rebounds the ball well and sets up low in the post where he has solid touch. With a 7'1 wingspan, and 9'1 standing reach, he plays like a 7 footer.
Maxym Ivshyn 6’10” 213 PF 1986 *Early Entry-Draft -- Interesting player. Very long and athletic and has a nice skill level. At 213 pounds, he doesn't really have a position, as he's a natural PF, without the lateral speed of a 3. But he could easily be a guy that gets drafted based on upside with a team watching him develop and hoping he can add weight. It was hard to get a great grasp of his overall offensive skill level, as his team was laying some eggs scoring-wise and his touches were limited. However, what he did show was nice fluidity and smooth offensive ability.
Andrei Vorontcevich 6’10” 236 PF Russia 1987 -- Impressed with his versatility and overall play. He's a bit like former Lakers forward Stanislav Medvedenko. He has solid bounce, gets around the court well and has an excellent shot that he hits out to 18 feet. Versatile. 6'11" wingspan. One to keep an eye on, especially if he grows.
Anatoly Kashirov 7’1” C Russia 1987 -- Sort of the anti-Marjanovich. While Boban appeared to be having the time of his life, Kashirov sort of moped around the entire four days. He's got a tremendous pair of hands, and good skill level offensively, but never seems to show the energy level or absorb the great plays he makes and gain confidence. He is truly a T-rex at 7'2" with a 6'9" wingspan.
Kaloyan Ivanov 6'9" 231 SF Bulgaria 1986 *Early Entry-Draft -- The more talented of the Identical twins. Kaloyan looks more athletic and has a better all around game. Both lack great explosiveness but have solid agility and hustle.
Artem Yakovenko 6’10" PF Russia 1988 -- Yakovenko looks like a small 6'9 but his massive wingspan (7'1) make him play bigger (8'11 standing reach). He's far too nice a kid and he seems to have a tough time flipping the switch and becoming intense and nasty on the court. Which is a big problem for an interior player. He's not a guy that can step out and hit shots from the perimeter so toughness and desire is essential for him, and he didn't show much of that in camp.
Luka Bogdanovic 6’9” 240 SF 1985 Draft Eligible -- Bogdanovic is a seasoned veteran in Serbia now. He is one of the most technically sound and physically developed players in camp. He's a nice European talent, but he doesn't have any attributes that make him a legit NBA prospect.
Julio Toledo 6’3” SG Brazil 1985 Draft Eligible -- 6'3 with a 7'2 wingspan which is absolutely retarded. He dunks on the break and plays like a 6'8 guy but has no real NBA potential due to his lack of offensive skills.
Alen Trepalovac 7'0" Croatia 1985 Draft Eligible -- Big but has limited talent and abilities. Besides his size and strength lacks much intrigue.
Rolandas Alijevas 6'4" PG Lithuania 1985 Draft Eligible -- Decent European level guard but nothing outstanding. Not an NBA level player.
Martynas Mazeika 6-'4" SG Lithuania 1985 Draft Eligible -- Has the classic Lithuanian shooting guard look with the same body type and hair cut as Majiciuskas. An excellent shooter, Mazeika ended up on the First Team All RBK Eurocamp. He's an excellent shooter with solid offensive skills and athleticism, but at 6'4" it's unlikely he has the shooting ability to make up for the lack of size and explosiveness.
Ingus Bankevics 6'5" SG Latvia 1985 Draft Eligible -- Not an NBA prospect but a gutsy player who scores well on drives to the basket and in transition. He surprisingly had the second fastest sprint time of anyone in camp.
Saul Blanco 6'6" SG Spain 1985 -- Struggled to make an impact going scoreless in the first game in 30 minutes played. Not a bigtime athlete but gave effort.
Milivoj Bozovic 7'4" C Serbia 1985 Draft Eligible -- Had limited effect early in the camp and missed the last few games due to injury. Limited athlete and prospect.
Romain Duport 7’1” C 1986 *Early Entry-Draft -- Very long . His standing reach is just 3 inches shorter than Alexandr Rindins (9'3 to 9'6). Duport reminds a little of Daniel Santiago with his length and body structure. Santiago though has excellent toughness and decent strength. Duport has neither and really shies away from contact.
Nikita Shabalkin 6’9” 234 PF 1986 *Early Entry-Draft -- A highly skilled and smart player who gives solid effort. Shabalkin is not an NBA prospect, but can be a solid talent in Russia. He's got a huge wingspan at 7'1, but lacks great lift and athletic ability. Shabalkin outworks opponents for rebounds and has a very solid shooting touch.
Deyan Ivanov 6'9" SF Bulgaria 1986 *Early Entry-Draft -- The Ivanov brothers run into the same problem that a lot of similar players run into. With their European teams, they are power forwards and used mostly inside with the ability to step out and shoot jumpers. But for the NBA they have to be small forwards and they don't develop the wing skills with passing and driving from the perimeter. So they often are forced to work on these skills on their own.
Adam Darboe 6’3” 192 PG Denmark 1986 -- Darboe really struggled. Rudy Mbemba absolutely killed him in the first game, e repeatedly picking his pocket and by the end of the game, Darboe had raised the white flag. He's a solid player, and he did help the Royal team in the back court when he was switched over to their squad, but he's not an NBA caliber player.
Leigh Enobakhare 6’9” 246 C Nigeria 1986 -- Enobakhare is an absolute physical specimen at 6'9 with a 7'6 wingspan. Unfortunately he came to the game too late and lacks the reflexes to make plays. He gets a few garbage baskets here and there and the occasional dunk, but really struggles to make anything happen in the post. His hands are weak on the boards as he often fumbles the ball. If he had grown up in NYC, you would be looking at a surefire first rounder, but he's a long shot to get drafted or make the league.
Roland Hendlein 6'9" 213 PF Hungary 1986 -- Wiry combo forward with solid aggressiveness and athleticism. Really too much of a tweener for the NBA, but has a good head for the game and competes.
Nikita Kourbanov 6’8” PF Russia 1986 -- Not an NBA prospect. Kourbanov plays hard and has solid athleticism, but at 6'8 he's not nearly skilled or talented enough to make up for his size disadvantage inside.
Dusan Mladjan 6'4" SG Serbia/Switzerland 1986 -- Skinny 2-guard but has very nice athleticism and shooting ability. One of the better kids in camp. He's too small to play 2-guard in the NBA but should be a great European player someday.
Gabriel Szalay 7’1” 219 PF/C 1987 *Early Entry-Draft -- Two years ago he looked like a solid NBA prospect. But in those two years besides bulking his arms up, he hasn't improved a great deal. It appears he doesn't have a body that can add any more weight. And at his current weight he's not strong enough to hold position inside. Despite being a very explosive athlete, Szalay no longer appears to be an NBA prospect and will likely find a nice career playing in Europe.
Ivan Paunic 6’4” 210 SG Serbia 1987 -- A tremendous athlete and speedy guard who scored the fastest time in the 3/4 court sprint. Got up for an umber of big dunks and had a strong performance against the USA RBK Team with 22 point, 6 boards and 4 assists. Needs to improve his outside shot, but has some time to develop.
Nebosa Zlatic 6'3 188 PG/SG Serbia 1987 -- Plays prep ball in North Carolina. Didn't have a huge impact on the camp. He's younger but doesn't seem to have a great deal of upside. A 6'3 combo guard but shows solid quickness.
Vladimir Dasic 6’10” 215 SF Serbia 1988 -- Probably the most disappointing kid in camp. Dasic has a tremendous NBA body structure with a 6'10 frame and 7' foot wing and he's extremely agile and fluid. But he seems to think he's already in the NBA as he doesn't work hard and doesn't seem to care about playing to his ability. His skill level is very limited as he scores mostly around the basket and on follow dunks. His basketball IQ and passing ability are very low and if he's not scoring, he doesn't bring much to the table. His attitude came under question from a number of scouts I spoke with.
Marko Keselj 6’10” 202 SF Serbia 1988 -- He might have been the worst player in camp. He gives solid effort but doesn't seem to have any understanding of how to play. He attacks the rim hard but with limited skill and success, and defensively he gambles far too much and often plays completely out of control to the point that he nearly injures players. He seemed to get frustrated with the blowout losses his team received, but didn't handle it well. If he doesn't change his playing style, he will either end someone's career or start a bench clearing brawl. Bonus points for sporting the 'stach, but not enough to make up for the lack of basketball skills.
Miroslav Raduljica 7’0” C 1988 *Early Entry-Draft -- Another big disappointment. Raduljica had been hailed as one of the better center prospects for the next generation in Europe, but his overall attitude and work ethic were questioned. He rolled his eyes when coached tried to give him instruction and failed to play up to his ability. He's got a real tough guy demeanor, but it all appears to be an act. He's also a dead ringer for Private Pyle (Vincent D'Onofrio) in Full Metal Jacket.
Alexander Ugrinoski 6'4" PG Croatia 1988 -- Ugrinoski is another guy who was highly acclaimed as a junior. But he appears to be a guy that peaked at 15 year old. He's 19 now, and doesn't have the body strength to compete with elite athletes. He had an excellent game matching up with Rudy Mbemba and hit a few big shots late. But overall he struggled to make plays for others and run the point guard position. He's young, but doesn't appear to have a great deal of upside.
Nikolas Pappas 6'3" SG Greece 1990 -- The youngest kid in camp, and it showed. He struggled to make many plays.