Ousmane Dieng (SG | 198 cm | ‘03) ~ CFBB Paris
One of the best long term prospects on this tournament in my opinion. Very good length and fluid movement for his size. Frame is also good and could add more muscle in the future. Good ball handler, keeps his dribbles low and head is always up, scanning the floor. His off the dribble shot is smooth even though the percentages on this tournament weren’t the best. Can pull the trigger even a few feet behind the three point arc so has some NBA range already. Hasn’t been attacking the rim much on this tournament, rather decided for mid range shots, sometimes the shot selection was questionable and would probably be better to attack the rim than opt for a shot. Otherwise, without the occasional bad shot selection, his decisions in offense were good and read the game pretty well. On the defensive end he was struggling a little but recovered really good with his athleticism and length. His rotations were good and on point, read the offensive player well and contested most of the shots. Could be a little more aggressive and tough on both sides.
Stefan Todorović (SG | 199 cm | ‘02) ~ Partizan
Not the best tournament for Stefan but his capable of bigger things in offense. Was struggling with his shot from distance, shot only 7/29 (24.1 %) from the three point land, but the shooting motion looks good and will translate to better accuracy. Has smooth off the dribble shot release, capable of scoring from long distance too. Not many sets were played for him, which is surprising to me, since he can be really effective as a catch&shoot shooter. His shot selection and decisions were bad sometimes but that’s his game, opting for shots from every position. Has solid body and size for his positions, absorbs the contact well around the rim but is not aggressive enough as a finisher around the rim. Could attack the rim better and more frequently to be even more effective as a scorer. Showed some good passes and court vision during the tournament but not elite level playmaker. Also needs to improve his handles, not on high level either. On the defensive end he is too soft and passive. Lacks aggressiveness and toughness. His rotations and movements are kinda slow and late, same goes for his reactions and lateral movements. Not elite athlete but has good basketball IQ and could make better reads in defense.
Nikola Manojlović (SG | 199 cm | ‘02) ~ Crvena Zvezda
Probably the most experienced player on the tournament since this was his 3rd tournament. Bad tournament for Crvena Zvezda, they finished on 6th place, the first time in last 10 years that they weren’t playing in the finals of this tournament but this hasn’t stopped Manojlović from finishing in the All-Tournament Five. Manojlović averaged 13.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and 4.8 assists on this tournament. Versatile, high IQ guard with solid body. Makes really good and quick decision, has good court vision and feel for game and showed some good passing touch over the tournament. Lacks a consistent shot but the release and technique overall looks good so the accuracy could be better. His first step is good, even though not the quickest, he can get past his defender with throwing him out of balance. Good finisher at the rim, especially with his dominant right hand. On the defensive end he also makes very good reads, has good reactions and lateral movements. Not the best athlete but still can guard most players on the perimeter because of his high IQ. Could struggle against elite athletes, so further evaluation is needed for this aspect. Shot from distance is his biggest liability so far but his feel for the game, basketball IQ and decision making are on really high level and his game could translate to higher level.
Egor Sytnikov (SG | 193 cm | ‘02) ~ Cedevita Olimpija
Probably one of the best shooters on this tournament, finished with 18.5 points while shooting 13/18 (72.2 %) for 2 and 14/32 (43.8 %) from the three point range. Also had 5.5 rebounds per game and finished in the All-Tournament Team. Egor is a dynamic two-way guard, with good vertical athleticism and solid lateral quickness. Not the best positional size but he replaces the lack of size with his athleticism and great energy. Has very good court awareness, reads the defense very good and can get open looks coming off screens. His shoot is quick and doesn’t need much space to pull the trigger. Very dangerous on open court, especially when he gets the rebound and pushes in transition – his rebounding instincts are very good for his size & position. Knows his lane and is a good runner without ball in his hands too. Could improve his ball handling skills and become a better offensive player with ball in his hands overall. On the defensive end, he can play very good defense, on- and off-ball. Has the athleticism to cover most guards on perimeter, moves fluidly around screens, deflects passes and rotates very well. Also communicates a lot with his team mates in defense.
Nikola Djurišić (SG/SF | 202 cm | ‘04) ~ Mega Bemax
One of the youngest players who got some serious minutes here in Belgrade. Even though he has not played his best tournament, the potential is there for sure. Nikola was struggling with his shooting all tournament from all spots – shooting just 7/20 (35 %) for 2, 3/11 (27.3 %) for three and 6/13 (46.2 %) from free throw line. He is not an elite shooter but surely capable of better percentages. Shooting mechanics look fine but needs to do some modifications in his release and follow through to become a more consistent shooter. A swingman, with good size and body, capable of playing on perimeter and posting up smaller players. Not elite athlete, struggling sometimes in one-on-one situations offensively and defensively. Has good basketball IQ and court awareness, with good instincts for rebounds on both ends. Showed some good passes out of pick & roll situations too. I missed more aggressiveness from him in offense and defense but surely one of the best long term prospects in this region.
Luka Tarlač (SF | 202 cm | ‘02) ~ Partizan
His statistics were more or less empty but he had a big impact on the success from Partizan on this tournament. Suffered some minor injury early in the second match and missed the last group game but played in the finals game. Glue guy of the team, doing the work on the defensive end. Luka has elite defensive instincts, especially good rotations and help from the weak side, resulting in some great blocks. Great hips and can drop low, has good reactions and great lateral movement. Versatile defender, capable of guarding most players on perimeter. Maybe he was too impatient in some on-ball defense situations and going directly for a steal and not waiting and defending the opponent cleanly. This resulted in him losing the balance and the offensive player getting past him but otherwise very good on ball defense. Has good footwork and can go around the screens fluidly. Had a minor offensive role on this tournament, made some good drives but hasn’t shot many shots from distance so hard to evaluate his offense. In past tournaments he was a pretty poor shooter and probably still needs to put more work on his shot and become a better, more consistent shooter and offensive player overall.
Nikola Radovanović (SF | 204 cm | ‘03) ~ Partizan
Interesting long-term prospect. Averaged 15.8 points and 6.5 rebounds (2.8 offensive rebounds) per game and finished in All-Tournament team. A competitive and hard working kid with high motor, plays with good energy and emotions. Has a hunched over posture, good length and very good athleticism. Especially dangerous on open court after he gets the defensive rebound and pushes in transition. Ambidexterity is still a problem, since he is not confident enough in his weak (right) hand dribbles and also finishes only with his strong (left) hand around the rim. Shooting technique looks better than before but still not consistent and accurate enough. Can get past his defender and attacks the rim aggressively. Also has a good ability to draw fouls and get to the charity line – accurate shooter from FT line. Not the best feel for game and decision making – makes kinda slow decisions with too many moves/dribbles before deciding what to do. On the defensive end he is a solid on ball defender but bad in pick & roll defense and getting around screens. He runs directly in screens and doesn’t position his legs good enough to go around them. Also frequently one or two steps behind on chases where his reads are pretty bad. Since his body is weak, he was also targeted a few times on low post where he tries to defend and plays hard but uses his hands too much. The talent is there but still needs to improve a lot things to be competitive on higher level too. Weak body, bad right hand, shooting technique and defensive game are the main categories that need improvements.
Daniel Batcho (PF/C | 208 cm | ‘02) ~ CFBB Paris
MVP of the tournament in Belgrade. Averaged 14.8 points, 11.3 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game. Great frame, strong body and runs the floor well. His screens are really hard and most defenders have problems getting around those screens. Isn’t the most effective as roller in pick & roll situations since his movements are pretty slow for his size but can create a lot space for the operator. Absorbs contact really good around the rim and showed some ambidexterity in around the rim finishes. Hasn’t shown any face up game and was effective only in around the rim offense. Good low post defender, not moved easily because of his strong body and also protecting the rim good but struggles with defense on perimeter against quicker players and on closeouts. Has good feel for rebounds, can create a lot space and does his role really well on both sides. Great team player but needs to improve his offensive skill set. Probably has higher upside on center position than as a power forward.
Stepan Gontar (C | 214 cm | ‘02) ~ Cedevita Olimpija
Player from Zlatorog Laško, loaned to Cedevita Olimpija for this tournament. He is already getting some minutes in first Slovenian basketball league too and is playing better and better. Has great mobility and agility for his size, moves fluidly. Body still isn’t fully developed, has good frame and could add more muscle. Has great shot release, very soft and can make shots from long range too. Also made a fadeaway shot from post up situation and the footwork and release looked very good. His post up game could be better but he lacks the strength in upper and lower body so with some physical improvements in his body, he should be a good inside player too. Runs the floor really well for a player his size and also rolls quickly in pick&roll situations. Has good hands and can catch most balls, even above the rim. Reads the game well, has good basketball IQ, but also made some tactical mistakes which is completely understandable since he was new to the system from Cedevita Olimpija and made just a few practices with the team. On the defensive end he was very active. Great rebounder, also protected the rim really good, made some deflections and can guard players on perimeter too. Really a good combination of length, coordination and instincts. Lacks more toughness and motor but it should come when he improves his body. Definitely a seven footer worth following with very good long term potential.
Mihailo Mušikić (C | 211 cm | ‘02) ~ Mega Bemax
Mušikić had a great tournament, should be in consideration for the All-Tournament team. Averaged 17.3 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game. His biggest advantage in comparison to other big men is his court vision and passing. Has great passing touch, delivers precise passes from the top or from post up situations to all directions and spots. As a scorer he expanded his range, looked confident shooting from distance, even from the three point line. Shooting motion is not the most fluid or quick and needs some space for shot but shots from distance give him a new dimension in his game. Not the best inside player, lacks strength and has a hard time against stronger opponents but he is a great playmaker from low post. A pretty bad athlete, also lacks energy and toughness and this translates to bad rebounding numbers for a player his size. Defensively he struggles against quicker and stronger players and could have a hard time adapting to higher level if he doesn’t become stronger. With good mobility, footwork and length he can contest shots around the rim and on closeouts. If he improves his defensive game and especially his body, he could be a good long term prospects because playmaking big men with outside game are kinda the prototype of a modern NBA big men.