Dario Saric = Lamar Odom
Love the comparison, I wrote the same thing in a previous post. Saric seems to be a bit craftier than Odom and more of a natural fit offensively on the wing, while Lamar was a bit stronger and more of a natural offensive fit at the four.
He was real impressive today versus Senegal. He had a nice line of 15/6/4 and 3 steals on 6 of 9 shooting, playing a solid amount against taller players yet holding his own when taken off the bounce. His effort and basketball IQ is what stood out today; he worked his ass off fronting the post up player and recovering on the pick and roll and crashed for every offensive rebound. He created extra possessions and chances for extra possessions with his effort. When the ball was in his hands or the offense was ran for him, the ball always seemed to find the bottom of the bucket. He had solid drives and forced nothing, always making the right basketball play. He had some phenomenal passes, including a no-look-between-the-legs bounce pass that resulted in foul shots for his teammate. If it led to a dunk, the play would have gone semi-viral like his no-look to Mario Hezonja the other week.
Saric looked like he could come in and play solid minutes off the bench in the NBA right now. Philadelphia definitely has a player they should be excited about. It'll be great getting to watch him throughout this whole FIBA World Cup. Also very impressive how he lost SIX TEETH in the first game and still continued to play at a high level. And they say basketball isn't a tough or physical sport...
I think Motiejunas reminds me of Lamar. Not just because he is left handed, but has a soft touch around the rim, shoots well from long range , and runs the floor well. Lets just hope that Donatas doesnt get hooked on drugs and marry into a degenerate, talentless family. :)
I think Philly is lucky to have him, he is a big talent, I love players who are good passers and make the game easier for their teammate and he does that and more, he shows he is tough and smart and will compliment almost any team he plays for. Philly may be years away from having a good team but they are accumulating some very good talent, they should be fun to watch develop.
Here's what I wrote about him before the draft. I put Saric 7th on my board. I think he has shooting potential, but that could be years away from being realized.
7) Dario Saric SF/PF Risk: 7/10 Potential: 9.5/10 Saric has potential in every area of the game. He has great length, combined with fluidity and decent quickness. Although he may end up as a 3, I think it's more likely that he ends up as a stretch 4, who may not be quick enough to defend 3s but could create matchup problems for slower power forwards. He seems to be a hardworking player who looks to share the ball with his teammates. While I think that his passing skills are overstated (he turns the ball over frequently), he certainly has court vision. There is no doubt that he has excellent basketball IQ overall. His shot is a work in progress, but it is showing steady signs of improvement. He has a great handle for a player his size (he was once a PG). His basketball IQ also transfers to the defensive end, where he shows excellent anticipation for steals and blocks. His biggest weakness at this point is his defensive positioning, both in the post and on the perimeter. CONCLUSION: I think Saric has a very high upside because he shows potential in every aspect of the game. He has the length, quickness and basketball IQ to make improvements in the long run. He also has less downside than some of the other prospects because of his years of experience in the adriatic league. I would not hesitate to use a top 10 pick on him. Since Saric has just signed with a Turkish team for 2 years, an NBA team will have to wait 2 years for him to come over. For many teams this will hurt his value, but it actually increases his value for a team which would prefer to be patient and develop players in a rebuilding effort. A team like the Philadelphia 76ers could take him at #10 and "tank" again this year. It would be interesting if they pick both Embiid and Saric, as this would be an obvious tanking strategy. This also applies to a team like the Nuggets who are in transition but have many players to give minutes to on their roster, or a team with multiple picks like the Magic, Celtics or Suns.
Hope this Croatia team makes it through a few rounds of knockout. It would be fun if they got a chance to play against the US.
It seems as though many people have jumped on board the Dario Šarić train after getting to see him play in a full game rather than some highlights. I've been saying for a while that he isn't necessarily a SF and he had the tenacity and skill combination to bang with the big boys of the NBA and I think he is showing the world that he can do so. I think he'd be a great bench player right now for a contender and for Philly, he'd be their no. 2 option behind McW. On another note, Rudež's struggles have continued, while Bogdanović should be one of the better bench players in the NBA.
I was extremely impressed by his ball handling and passing but he really needs to work on his outside shot. It doesn't even seem like he's got college 3-point range. I think the Sixers will end up playing him mostly at SF.
A good comparison, he might start at small forward but is best suited to being a power forward. So Bynum and Gasol would start, and when everyone is at the 76ers they will have Embiid and Noel starting with Saric at small forward.