13 - Guo Ailun

6-4, 190 Shooting Guard
China International
11/14/93 (27 yrs)
Liaoning, China
Jump Shot
NBA Ready
Ball Handling
89 Overall:

Strengths: A deceptive and angular player with the ball in his hands, uses an array of hesitation and change of direction moves to attack defenders and get into the lane … At 6-4, uses his size effectively to overpower smaller defenders… Crafty finisher, adept with both the left and right hand … Good balance and body control, Guo is always in a position to make a play once he’s in the lane … Has consistent command of a floater, which he frequently uses to score over taller defenders … A physically strong player, Guo is sometimes an effective on-ball defender when he’s crowding his opponent … Shows a lot of enthusiasm on the defensive end… Has a leader’s mentality not usually seen in Chinese guards … By far the most vocal point-guard to come out of China in a while … A natural on-floor leader, Guo is always talking and getting in his teammates’ ears … Plays with a high level of confidence, not easily intimidated … Has a passion for the game, you can tell he truly loves to play the game, also quite rare for Chinese players who have burned out from a young age through years and years of year-round training…

Weaknesses: Struggles with his jump shot… Pull-ups, spot-ups, curls, flares, mid-rage, long-range, Guo hasn’t showed he can consistently make defenses pay from the perimeter… Hit only 48% of his two-point shots and 28% of threes this season in the CBA… Poor and inconsistent mechanics, his release rarely looks the same on a shot-to-shot basis… Like most young point-guards, has a tendency to over penetrate and force things that aren’t there… Though physically strong, not particularly athletic… Has a tough time against elite level perimeter players… Defensively, Guo plays with his upper body, doesn’t move his feet… This isn’t a knock on Guo, however, as almost all Chinese players play a physical chest-to-chest style when guarding the ball… Major concerns over his actual age…

Notes: Basketball runs in his veins… Nephew of current Liaoning head coach, Guo Shiqiang, who played point-guard for the Chinese National Team from 1999-2005 before becoming the youngest head coach in National Team history in 2009… Made his National Team debut at the age of 16 in the 2010 Turkey FIBA World Championship… Was ruled eligible to bypass the CBA’s 18 and over age limit due to his National Team experience; rule has since been dubbed the “Guo Ailun Clause…” Performed live during the CBA All-Star Game pre-game ceremonies, singing “Glory” (Rong Yao) in front of a live national television audience… An important prospect for China, will be the heir to Liu Wei’s starting point-guard spot on the Senior National Team after he retires…

Jon Pastuszek 5/9/11

Jon Pastuszek is based in Beijing, China, where he runs, a blog dedicated to providing informed and thoughtful analysis of all things related to China and basketball.  He has spent nearly three years in the country, and is close to fluent in both spoken and written Mandarin.


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