3 - Dragan Bender

7-0, 220 Power Forward
Croatia International
11/17/97 (24 yrs)
Capljina, Bosnia & Herzegovina
International Team
Maccabi Tel Aviv
Team Site Profile
Jump Shot
NBA Ready
Post Skills

NBA Comparison: Hedo Turkoglu

Strengths: Versatile player, who can play both forward positions and occasionally at Center, although for now is considered a power forward … Has all the necessary elements to become a prototypical stretch 4, if he continues to improve … Impressive size for a power forward. Solid wingspan (measured at 7-2 feet) and great standing reach (measured at 9-3 feet) … Runs the floor extremely well for a big guy … Very good coordination for a player his size … Good ball handing … Possesses high basketball I.Q. … Very good court vision, either while dribbling or playing in the post … Already an excellent passer … He can do just about everything at a good rate on the offensive end … Has the rare ability to play the pick n roll as both a ball handler and as a screener … He really likes to run the open floor and can lead the fast break due to his good ball handling … Improving shooter with the potential to be a very good mid-range and long range threat… Can attack closeouts against slower opponents … He has a nice right post hook, which is difficult to block due to his size … Despite the fact that he has a lanky frame, he is not afraid of contact … Willing rebounder … Great low stance on defense, with really active hands … Good lateral quickness for his size, which gives him the ability to guard wing players … Can become an excellent pick n roll defender (as a big) due to his lateral quickness, agility and speed … His great standing reach gives him the potential to be a solid shot blocker … Considered a hard worker and a competitor …

Weaknesses: Not a great athlete … Limited leaping ability … Not explosive enough to play as a wing at the next level … At time he looks like a perimeter player trapped in a big man’s body … Stronger players can bully him on the post on both ends of the floor … Has to bulk up to play at the next level, and appears to have a naturally skinny bodytype … He may can do just about everything on the offensive end, but he can’t do anything at an elite level … Shooting mechanics aren’t always consistent … Changes release when opponents close out at him … Shot off the dribble needs work … Can’t create off the dribble … Has to work on his pull-up jumper … Depends too much on his right hand, which makes him predictable …  Drives in straight line and can’t change direction or speed … Not strong enough to post up at a consistent level just yet … Other than a right hook, he doesn’t really have a counter move on the post … He needs to work on his footwork around the basket … He mainly turns from the left shoulder … Must learn to move better without the ball … Has problems finishing through contact … Not equally good at finishing at the rim with his left hand … At times he tries to do things too fast, which leads to either turnovers or bad shots … Post defense is a question mark … Not as good shot blocker as he should be for a player his size … At times he loses his concentration on defense … Mediocre rebounder, who sometimes forgets to box out …

Notes: Considered the biggest talent in European basketball at the moment … At the age of 14 he played with in the U-16 European Championship with Croatia … He made his professional debut at the age of 15 with KK Split … He signed a 7-year contract with Maccabi Tel Aviv before he even turn 17 years old … Missed in the U-19 Word Championship because of a feud he had with Croatian Federation … Member of the 2012 Croatian U16 team …

Stefanos Makris 3/7/16