Sani Campara (‘99), 6’2, PG, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Campara was the top scorer of the tournament, with 21 points per game in little less than 38 minutes, and earned a spot in the All-Tournament Team. More a scorer than a distributor, he took 18 shots per game and was the main creator for his team. A P&R player with good fundamentals, he has a nice change of pace after the screen and the strength to absorb contacts against the defense and earn separation for his shot. He scored in a variety of ways, pulling up both from mid and long range and showing an effective floater.
Mikael Jantunen (‘00), 6’8, PF/C, Finland
The leading rebounder in the tournament (12.6 per game, 3.9 on the offensive end), Jantunen added 11.6 points, 2.7 assists, 2.3 steals, 1.3 blocks, as the only player averaging a double-double in Bratislava. He’s an atypical player, still stuck between the two big man spots, but has impressive basketball instincts and IQ which are at the foundation of his game. Jantunen can handle the ball, pushing the transition right off the defensive rebound, and has natural passing instincts; but his scoring comes mainly around the basket, as he still lacks a reliable jumper and a shooting range behind the three point line. He’s an impressive rebounder with elite positioning and timing. It’ll be interesting to see if he can develop into more of a perimeter player, adding some shooting skills and operating more often far from the basket.
Ivan Fevrier (‘99), 6’8, PF, France
Fevrier was the top performer for France, averaging 15 points and 5.9 rebounds. He’s an average prospect from a physical and athletic standpoint, not possessing elite size, length or explosiveness, but plays with great motor and physical attitude. He likes to play through contact and has good positioning to go after rebounds. He can either pop or roll after the on-ball screen, and can attack with few dribbles and finish at the rim. His jumper is still not reliable, but has room to improve its effectiveness.
Olivier Sarr (‘99), 6’11, PF/C, France
It was a good tournament for Sarr, who played only five games not starting any of them but still averaged 7.6 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in little less than 19 minutes per game. His body is still extremely skinny but his combination of size, length and athleticism is hard to find at this level of competition. To his mobility and physical upside, Sarr adds a good feel for the game, activity level and soft touch in his shot, with the potential to become a legit threat from beyond the arc.
Philipp Herkenhoff (‘99), 6’10, PF, Germany
Averaged 12 points, 7.4 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.7 steals in Bratislava, but was almost a no-show in the first games, overall having a disappointing tournament. Herkenhoff is still an intriguing prospect thanks to his length and athleticism, but his body hasn’t developed much lately. A fluid slasher and efficient transition player, he’ll need to become tougher as right now he lacks the necessary attitude to fight inside the paint. He has potential to become a solid outside shooter, but the improvements required in this area of his game are still not here, as his form is still inconsistent and he doesn’t take many threes; shot a total 3/12 from outside through seven games in Bratislava, a sample which should significantly increase.
Jonas Mattisseck (‘00), 6’4, PG/SG, Germany
Lefty combo guard who averaged 12 points, 3 assists and 1.7 steals while shooting a total 16/28 (57.1%) from three in the tournament. Has interesting frame for his age and position, and he’s an aggressive offensive player and a confident shooter. Still not fully comfortable finishing all the way to the rim, something which will be to monitor once his frame will fill up. Shoots naturally coming off the P&R but can also operate off the ball and attack on the move. Overall has mainly scoring instincts, but shows good poise and vision to find open teammates on the perimeter.
Georgios Kalaitzakis (‘99), 6’6, PG/SG, Greece
After a breakout performance in January at the ANGT in L’Hospitalet, Kalaitzakis had another impressive showing in Bratislava, definitively establishing himself as one of the top prospects in his age group. He has a high-level combination of size and length for his position, and he’s a fluid and explosive athlete who can change speed at will with the ball. An advanced ball-handler who loves to play off the dribble and run the P&R, shows good vision in the halfcourt but definitely looks for his own shot first. Natural shooter off the dribble, can easily pull up and shoot over his defender; can also easily gets by his defender and finish in traffic, showing good touch to score even when contested. Was more focused and committed on defense, has the potential to guard any backcourt position if he doesn’t settle on just using his length and quickness to hunt for the ball. Main issue he’ll need to work on is his shot selection and overall decision making, as right now he still takes too many questionable shots.
Dimitrios Moraitis (‘99), 6’4, PG/SG, Greece
A strong, athletic and very aggressive player, ended up as the top scorer for Greece with 16.8 points per game and added 4 rebounds, 4 assists and 2.8 steals in the five games he played. Relentlessly attacks the basket, doesn’t show any hesitation in driving right into the defender and finishing with contact, earns lot of free throws thanks to his attitude (67.2% in free throw rate); attacks right away in transition, easily scoring off early opportunities. Shot only 12.9% from beyond the arc in Bratislava, taking lot of shots despite his inability to score out of them.
Guglielmo Caruso (‘99), 6’9, PF/C, Italy
Still transitioning from the center to the power forward position, showed some significative improvement in his perimeter game. Caruso’s body is still skinny but yet improved over the last few months; his motor is improved as well and he’s not afraid to battle against stronger players, despite still struggling to produce through physical contact. A reactive player with long wingspan, Caruso led the competitions in blocks per game (1.9). On offense he showed better ability to put the ball on the floor and attack off the dribble, even though so far he’s doing it mainly attacking a closeout. He didn’t take any shot from outside, something which he has sometimes showed to be able to do but that still doesn’t properly belong to his game.
Lukas Uleckas (‘99), 6’6, SG/SF, Lithuania
The second best scorer for Lithuania, Uleckas averaged 13 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2 assists, 1.1 steals and 1 block per game. He took most of his shots from beyond the arc, shooting a total of 19/53 threes through seven games (35.8%). His shooting ability is the main intriguing aspect of his game, he’s a quick, consistent shooter with high release and deep range; he was shooting mainly off the catch in Bratislava, not having to handle the ball a lot, but he’s equally effective if he has to pull up after couple of dribbles or coming out of the P&R. Uleckas has developed a lot as a ball-handler and P&R player lately, showing good decisions and poise despite lacking an elite change of pace off the dribble. He’s also an underrated defender, who doesn’t shy away from contact and has solid footwork to guard smaller players. Looks like he’s still not fully aware of his potential, being shy on the court sometimes, but his upside is definitely intriguing.
Arnas Velicka (‘99), 6’4, PG, Lithuania
The leader of the third-placed Lithuanian team was once again Velicka, a true floor general who was named to the All-Tournament Team. In Bratislava he was the best scorer (15.3 points), rebounder (7 rebounds) and passer (6.4 assists) for his team, leading the competition in assists per game and registering the tournament’s only triple-double (14+13+11 in the quarterfinals against Italy). Not a particularly explosive player off the dribble, Velicka can still easily get by his man and create separation thanks to his ball-handling and nice change of speed, using also his strong frame to find and absorb contacts. He was likely the best P&R guard in the tournament, showing great poise and decision making. Didn’t shoot well the ball in the tournament, finishing with only 19.6% from deep.
Marko Simonovic (‘99), 6’11, PF/C, Montenegro
Simonovic had a breakout tournament in Bratislava, carrying the offense of Montenegro and averaging 17.7 points, 8.4 rebounds and 1.1 blocks while shooting 67.9% from inside the arc and 55.6% from three. Still transitioning from the center to the power forward spot, Simonovic showed decisive improvements in his perimeter game. He was comfortable handling the ball and hitting pull-up shots, also from beyond the arc, and was hard to guard on the P&R, being able to both roll and pop after the screen and to easily put the ball on the floor. He finished well around the rim with both hands, also from the low post where he took advantage of his good footwork to turn around both shoulders. Simonovic will need to work on his decision making and on improving his frame to better deal with physical contacts.
Aleksandr Ershov (‘00), 6’5, SG/SF, Russia
Top scorer for Russia despite being one year under age, left mixed impressions in the tournament. Has an already strong body which he uses well to absorb contacts, but has average size for the small forward spot and lacks elite explosiveness. Aggressive with the ball but doesn’t have a great change of pace, he’s at his best if he can attack on a straight line using his body to make his way to the basket. Shooting ability is his most valuable skill, has a compact and quick release, can hit jumpers with confidence both off the catch and off the dribble, shot 38.7% from the three point line in Bratislava.
Alexander Shashkov (‘00), 6’10, PF/C, Russia
Shashkov was the most intriguing prospect for Russia, performing at a good level despite being one year under age. Has an impressive combination of frame, explosiveness and mobility for his age, even though he’s still not able to fully take advantage from it. Can easily create take opposing big men off the dribble, he’s confident and natural with the ball in his hands, has a nice-looking jump shot with comfortable range from beyond the arc. He’ll need to improve his level of aggressiveness and toughness, as he was sometimes overmatched when playing against physical competition.
Balsa Koprivica (‘00), 7’0, C, Serbia
In his first FIBA tournament with Serbia, Koprivica played only a total of 30 minutes in the competition, but that was enough to show some impressive flash and to make a strong impression on people in attendance: Koprivica is still skinny, but he’s a long and extremely fluid player who showed elite quickness and timing in defensive rotations.
Nikola Miskovic (‘99), 6’9, PF, Serbia
Named MVP in Bratislava, after scoring 23 points in the final against Spain, Miskovic averaged 12.6 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.1 steals during the tournament. A quite atypical player, who loves to handle the ball but still isn’t much consistent as a first scoring option. His frame is still undeveloped despite some improvement and he’s still not fully comfortable playing against physical contact, but has very good size and mobility to work on. He’s a streaky shooter, he’s at his best if he can slash to the basket and finish inside, also showing good awareness as a cutter. His ability to handle the ball is intriguing, particularly giving his ability to push the transition and to pass off the dribble. Miskovic will need to find consistency as a shooter to be able to play up to his potential; he’ll also need to improve his attitude, as his body language wasn’t always good in Bratislava, particularly when he was challenged from physical competition.
Marko Pecarski (‘00), 6’9, PF/C, Serbia
Pecarski was the top performer for Serbia in the tournament, averaging 12.6 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game. An already defined player from a physical and athletic standpoint, Pecarski lacks elite size, length and explosiveness even for this level of competition, but his fundamentals and basketball instincts were above the ones of most players in Bratislava, and he was able to make a good use of his body to fight inside and create separation for his shot. His elite positioning and cutting ability guaranteed him lot of rebounds, as well as a good number of effective plays catching the entry pass to finish around the rim. His athletic woes and lack of lateral quickness are still the main concern about his potential, but he just gets things done on offense, scoring with his soft touch and hardly guardable jump shot.
Filip Petrusev (‘00), 6’10, C, Serbia
Petrusev had a solid role coming off the bench, even though his playing time went up and down in the tournament. His frame has improved and yet is still far from being filled up, and his mobility is intriguing for a player his size. Showed good touch around the rim, with high release in his hook shot and good footwork in tight space inside, even though he wasn’t always aggressive against physical competition. He’ll need to work on expanding his shooting range on offense, something which looks like he can do but he didn’t show in Bratislava.
Aleksa Uskokovic (‘99), 6’3, PG, Serbia
The most intriguing prospect in the Serbian backcourt, Uskokovic had mainly a supporting role in Bratislava, playing with poise, distributing the ball and rarely taking primary scoring responsibilities. Uskokovic is a strong point guard with very good length, who has impressive instincts on defense pressuring the ball and generating steals against the ball-handler. On offense he has good vision and timing to pass out of the P&R, is a solid shooter from deep but will need to work on becoming a more reliable scorer in 1vs1 situations.
David Kralj (‘99), 6’3, SG, Slovenia
The top performer in a disappointing Slovenian team, had some up and down in efficiency but overall had a breakout tournament in Bratislava. An athletic and extremely aggressive guard on both ends of the floor, he was the main creator in his team’s backcourt, and the only able to beat his man on a constant basis. A great finisher inside the paint, with multiple solutions and the ability to play above the rim, he was able to play both off the ball and as a primary ball-handler, attacking the closeout or just taking his man off the dribble in isolation. A lefty shooter with consistent form, he took lot of shots from beyond the three point line, both off the catch or pulling up off P&R and isolation sets. He was also among the best perimeter defenders in attendance, with high-level motor, inclination in playing through contact and excellent lateral quickness.
Osas Ehigitor (‘99), 6’10, C, Spain
Ehigitor was a key inside presence for Spain and averaged 9.8 points and 7.2 rebounds in the competition. He’s still a work in progress in terms of feel for the game and ball skills, but he moves well and can score around the rim with decent touch with both hands. What makes him an intriguing prospect is his impressive frame, as he has a strong and defined body which allows him to easily compete inside and handle physical competition. He finishes well off cuts and P&R sets, and has the mobility to become a decisive defensive presence.
Miguel Gonzalez (‘99), 6’7, SG/SF, Spain
It was an up and down tournament for Gonzalez, who only shot 31.4% from the field in Bratislava. He’s a prospect with intriguing frame for his position, even though his body is still undeveloped and his centre of gravity tends to be high. He also can handle the ball decently for his size, but rarely showed anything off the dribble during the competition, acting mainly as a spot up player and not having the ball a lot in his hands. He settled on his role as a shooter off the catch, while it would have been interesting to see him with more of role as a ball-handler at this level, and ended up shooting below average for his standards.
Sergi Martinez (‘99), 6’8, PF/C, Spain
Martinez was once again tremendously productive, averaging 15.9 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.4 steals while shooting 56.6% from inside the arc and earning a spot in the All-Tournament Team. Martinez perimeter game is still not reliable, something which limits his potential for the highest level. He prefers to battle inside, playing as a cutter, driving to the basket or operating in the low post, with very good use of his strong and long frame to seal and score over his defender. He’s quicker than most inside players he’s matched up with, something which allows him to take them off the dribble or to just go around them in the low post, being able to spin around both shoulders. He’s a physical and aggressive competitor who really wants to put his body in the fight, and can easily handle contacts inside.
Ragip Berke Atar (‘99), 6’11, C, Turkey
Atar was named in the All-Tournament Team, after leading Turkey to the 4th spot while averaging 16.4 points, 7.9 rebounds (4 on the offensive end), 1.3 blocks per game and shooting 61.3% from the field. An extremely skilled post player, Atar makes good use of his big and strong body to seal his defender and take deep position in the low post, and has quick footwork for his size to get around his defender and score at the rim. A below the rim player who lacks elite leaping ability, he’s fluid for his size, runs the court well and opens up nicely after the P&R screen, becoming an easy target for an entry pass. Atar’s main weakness is his lack of range on both ends of the court: his shooting range doesn’t extend outside of the paint, and on defense he has poor lateral quickness and doesn’t usually get actively involved in P&R defense.
Muhaymin Mustafa (‘99), 6’6, SF, Turkey
Not always productive on the court and receiving up and down playing time during the tournament, Mustafa still had couple of breakout games on offense, while establishing himself also as a key defensive player for Turkey. His frame and defensive versatility are intriguing, as he has good length and footwork to guard most players on the perimeter. On offense he plays off the catch and isn’t productive as a ball-handler, but showed better decisions and understanding of is role. He’ll need to become a better shooter increasing the amount of his shots from beyond the arc, but his shooting form is solid.
Yigitcan Saybir (‘99), 6’7, SF/PF, Turkey
The lefty forward had a very good tournament in Bratislava, averaging 16.4 points, 6.3 rebounds and 1.4 steals. An explosive athlete with good length, he’s undersized for the power position, which he’s mainly playing now; but makes up for his lack of size with an aggressive game, using at his best his athletic tools. An improvement as a shooter is needed, as right now he’s not a reliable threat and passes on a lot of shots, preferring to shot fake and drive. But he’s a good finisher inside the paint, despite strong-hand dominant: he can change direction with the ball and has good body control to finish around the basket, can handle contacts better than his frame would suggest, shows a solid floater and can easily make plays above the rim.
Issuf Sanon (‘99), 6’3, SG, Ukraine
Sanon had a huge breakout tournament in Bratislava. An impressive athlete with long wingspan and a crazy quick change of speed, Sanon plays with incredible intensity and aggressiveness, also looking extremely emotional on the court. He’s still very wild at this stage of his development, but he just relentlessly attacks and gets things done, scoring the ball at an impressive rate and creating havoc on defense. Has a great first step, excellent body control and impressive leaping ability, can make plays in the hang time and is a very efficient finisher: showed good touch and array of solutions from inside the arc, and was able to easily play above the rim even in the halfcourt. He’s not a natural shooter, but was able to hit pull-up shots at a good rate in Bratislava. He’ll need to learn how to slow down sometimes and work on his decision making, as well as on his off-hand which he doesn’t like to use that much. Averaged 19.3 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 5 turnovers, 3.4 steals and 1.1 blocks in the competition.
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