10 - Azuolas Tubelis

6-10, 235 Power Forward
Arizona Junior
03/22/02 (21.5 yrs)
Vilnius, Lithuania
Team Site Profile
Jump Shot
NBA Ready
Post Skills
89 Overall:

NBA Comparison: Isaiah Hartenstein

Strengths: Lefty big really impressive coordination and touch around the hoop … Really excels scoring within floater range … Finishing touch is superb … Uses the backboard to his advantage … Maintains control on spin moves and traditional big man drop steps, which he does effortlessly … Agile and controlled, good coordination … Elite on the catch. He can redirect hot potatoes to teammates in their shooting pocket due to his good hands and vision … Also quickly transfers caught passes into his own shots, with control and accuracy … Wasn’t asked to play make on the perimeter a ton at U of A, but especially in international play, has shown some impressive shake and shot creation ability in a face up game … Very creative, and you can tell he’s really processing the game at a high level, adapting on the fly … Looks like he really enjoys playing … Physically, rangy, with a 6’11” wingspan in 6’10″+ frame. Tubelis catches well, and it feels like if he takes a shot within 10 feet or so that it’s going in … Tricky in the screen and roll as the screen man … Is similarly effective on a handoff — these moves are run frequently in modern NBA offenses and he would be able to produce immediately here … Has not taken so many opportunities in a “pick and pop” scenario so far, where he is taking a 17-23 footer (so many of his shots are those little floaters previously mentioned). But his shot mechanics makes you think he can develop confidence and become productive to 3P range … Like fellow Euro lefty big Isaiah Hartenstein, Tubelis is very effective finding cutters and teammates spotting up in the corners, both from the top of the key and the post … For someone his size, Tubelis runs the floor very, very well (and willingly). At Arizona he often would leak out on a fast break and finish with a dunk, maybe even after a dribble or two… Upon receiving a post entry pass or off of an offensive rebound, Tubelis is very well coached to keep the ball high, above the shoulders … Defensively, he appears to be able to switch on a screen and roll, which is a nearly-required skill for a big in the modern NBA. In theory, he is a fluid athlete who should not have a problem with this. But likely will need to get more reps in as he wasn’t asked to do it as much in college as he will on the next level …

Weaknesses: As agile and coordinated as he is, he lacks NBA speed and athleticism … As good at Tubelis is around the hoop and from mid-range, he does not attempt many shots with traditional shooting form (instead, he prefers floaters, push shots and hook shots). But his mechanics look fluid … Would love to see him develop confidence and get more reps in extending to 3-point range … Hasn’t been asked to handle the ball much in a face up game, and it remains to be seen what NBA teams will ask him to do (put him in a garbage-buckets type situation vs. asking him to face up and dribble?) … To get on the floor, as many bigs do, he may need to first cut his teeth on the boards, especially offensive rebounds, and on defense … He is not bad in these areas but he is not standout either… Tubelis appears to have a very good feel for the game, but did not have standout assist numbers … Getting more reps proving his shot creation ability for teammates is necessary … Tubelis is not weak. And he’s no wimp. But he’s not as assertive down low, not as physical as some others he will meet at the next level … Will box out fairly well, but he is not a rebounding powerhouse, nor has he managed to use physicality to create space on offense. Offensively, he usually goes around the defender, avoiding contact … He got to the FT line a roughly average amount for a player of his caliber… it would be a surprise to see him as THE feature guy in an NBA offense, he won’t get a post pass and hold it, and make decisions as time tick off the shot clock. He did a lot of this at Arizona and so will need to adapt … Is also capable of making quick decisions. But in the NBA he likely won’t have a choice and will need to readily adapt… worth noting that Tubelis is very left handed. He doesn’t do much offensively with his right hand. That said I won’t sit here and tell you that NBA All Stars haven’t been made without ever developing their off hand! …Tubelis is not a shot blocker, although he has surprised with damn impressive chase down blocks in the past … Sound but not standout defender. As mentioned before, he will need to work on his physicality to deal with some of the stronger NBA players than what he has been used to… Doesn’t take nor make many threes (30% in college at only 1 attempts per), but shows a decent shooting stroke and touch. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this being the linchpin of whether he gets big minutes in the pros or not. If he can knock down a three consistently I’d really struggle to see him not sticking on an nba roster. .. 75% FT shooter, fine but not great … Is he just a tad small for the forward position at the next level? He’s similar height to fellow countryman Sabonis (Domantas), but is not nearly as physical. His skill set resembles Isaiah Hartenstein’s, but IHart has about 3″ on Tubelis. On the plus side, Tubelis is quite a bit more fluid and perhaps even more athletic than either of the two aforementioned Euro bigs who have are enjoying very successful NBA careers… Doesn’t appear to be the strongest for his weight, although he doesn’t exactly get pushed around easily.

Overall: Tubelis is a talented lefty forward with great hands and soft a touch. A decorated college player, Tubelis leaves University of Arizona after his junior campaign where he won PAC-12 Conference Tournament MVP, to enter the NBA Draft. Floaters and hook shots all day on offense! Finesse player more than interior bruiser … may need to improve physicality for the NBA… Elite at finishing close to the hoop and out to floater range … takes relatively few shots with traditional shooting form (as opposed to these little baby hooks and floaters) … only averaged about 2 assists per game in college, but especially in international play, the Lithuanian has shown ability to be a playmaker … overall feel for the game stands out… Defensively has shown flashes at being an athletic shotblocker type … instincts are strong, but may struggle against some bigger, stronger forwards in the NBA until he adds weight … Tubelis compares to fellow countryman Domantas Sabonis and fellow Euro ball player Isaiah Hartenstein (worth noting, all 3 players are lefties)! Tubelis is not as strong as Sabonis, and is not as tall as Hartenstein (3 inch delta). But Tubelis is more agile, with possibly even better touch … Tubelis is a hair undersized for the NBA. His 6’11” listed height may be slightly generous … overall, I would not be surprised to see Tubelis find his niche and have a successful NBA career — especially if he can develop a reliable outside shot (where his mechanics are currently fairly pure) and gain strength to hold his ground defensively. 7th / 8th guy (or better) on an NBA roster for 8+ years is within reach. Tubelis is a nice modern big man with a traditional skill set. His fluidity and excellent hands truly stand out … Playing in the Pac 12, legendary big man Bill Walton (now a Pac-12 announcer) gets to see him plenty and is very complimentary of his big man feel and skill set …

Notes: Measured 6′ 8.75” barefoot, 9′ 0.00” standing reach,  234.8 lbs, 6′ 11.00” wingspan at the 2023 NBA Draft Combine … Born in Vilnius, Lithuania, the birth place of notable or even legendary Lithuanian basketball stars such as Šarūnas Marčiulionis. … A fulltime starter for nearly his entire 3 years at Arizona … Pac-12 Tournament Most Outstanding Player & All-Tournament Team … Became the seventh player in Pac-12 history to lead the league in Scoring and Rebounding … Ranked fifth in scoring and fourth in rebounding for the tournament … Played for Vilnius Rytas, a team that has won two EuroCup championships and five Lithuanian League titles … Has a twin brother Tautvilas who also player for Arizona … This past season, had the first 40 point game for the Arizona Wildcats since 1995 against Oregon … In summer 2021, Helped Lithuania to a sixth place finish at the FIBA U19 World Cup in Latvia …

Drew Wolin 6/10/23