Frank Ntilikina (SG/PG, Strasbourg)

 

Measurables: 6’5”, 7’0” wingspan, 190 lbs, 18.8 years old

Strengths

  • Long strides help him cover ground
  • Wingspan helps him generate turnovers – 3.2 stl/40 at U18s
  • Length helps him to extend and finish around the rim
  • Quick, long, and physical on D – shutdown potential at either guard spot
  • Length helps him to recover when beat off dribble
  • Good hustle – runs back in transition, slides his feet
  • Plays with his hands up on D – obscures passing lanes
  • Closes out hard with good discipline
  • Already very good at vertical contests – shows discipline
  • Good feel as a transition passer, unselfish, good vision
  • Already has lots of experience running PnR, height allows him to see over defenses
  • Great feel for the game even as over PG skills are developing
  • Quick, sound 3 point release – 43% with Strasbourg this season
  • Good catch and shoot mechanics
  • Quick release
  • Great ability to play off-ball as a 2 guard
  • Great pull-up game, punishes defenses for going under
  • Able to shoot over contest

Weaknesses

  • Shot goes a bit forward, may want to make slight tweak
  • Lacks athleticism to blow by defenders on perimeter
  • May never be a true point guard – 22.8 TOV% at U18s
  • Honestly may be better off as a 2 guard in NBA
  • Needs to improve accuracy/timing as a passer
  • Forces passes at times, needs to improve PG feel
  • Loose handle, needs to improve as a ball handler
  • Has a LOT of turnover issues to clean up
  • Lacks off-dribble creativity, doesn’t create separation
  • Has little burst to blow by defenders, get to rim
  • Poor handles inhibit a lot of his on-ball game on offense
  • Doesn’t take advantage of switches as much as he should
  • Settles for floaters instead of getting to rim
  • Not very good at drawing fouls – sign of aversion for contact
  • Has slight tweaks to make to jumper, help him get it off faster

Overall

Ntilikina may be the top international prospect in this year’s draft, but that doesn’t make him the “mystery guy”. He’s very defined in what his strengths and weaknesses are. He projects very well as a 3 point shooter and defender given his elite tools and size, with flashes of primary ballhandling ability. He needs to work a lot on ball handling, overall point guard feel, and finishing near the rim as he looks to expand his offensive repertoire. Not a phenomenal athlete, Ntilikina will have to reach a very high skill level in order to become a true weapon on offense. He may max out as an off-ball 3 and D guard who can playmake a little, never being a true PG. Still, his size, shooting ability, and upside as a point guard will land him in the lottery.

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