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Old 05-18-2011, 03:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Draft profile: Jonas Valanciunas

H: 6' 11"
W: 240 lbs
Bday: 05/06/1992 (just turned 19 Years Old)
Position: C

Standing 6-6 ½ when he arrived in Vilnius in February of 2007, Valanciunas has grown at least four inches since (I'm now 210 centimeters [almost 6-11] without shoes,” he informed us) and has slowly grown into his excellent frame. He's retained all of the quickness he had earlier on in his career and still sports a mammoth 7-6 wingspan, (again according to him.)

He's an incredibly intense competitor, a boundlessly energetic player who never stops working for a moment and whose presence is constantly felt on the court.

He runs the floor extremely well, is quick off his feet and has no qualms whatsoever about throwing his body around in the paint.

Essentially an afterthought in Lietuvos Rytas' offense, Valanciunas satisfies his hunger for touches through his work on the offensive glass. The largest portion of his offense (27%) comes from this area according to Synergy Sports Technology, a testament to his length, quickness, timing, hands, activity level and instincts. He pulls down over five offensive rebounds for every 40 minutes he's on the floor, and watching him play, it's not difficult to tell why.

As attractive a skill as his offensive rebounding might be, Valanciunas' most important source of scoring comes from his ability to finish plays created for him by teammates around the basket. He takes special pride in his ability to operate as a pick-and-roll finisher -- “That's my basketball,” he said. This is a skill that should translate to the NBA immediately.

Valanciunas does a good job setting screens and then rolling to the basket with pinpoint timing, arms high in the air, vigorously pleading for the ensuing pass. He has extremely soft hands and attacks the rim with real purpose, elevating above the rim and finishing strong, with a dunk if possible – and preferably an emphatic one at that.
DraftExpress NBA Draft Prospect Profile: Jonas Valanciunas, Stats, Comparisons, and Outlook

Finishing around basket
Free throws

Post moves
Foul rate

I say he is ahead of Kanter. Plays starting center for a good Euroleague team (7.6 pts on 70% shooting 5.4 rebs in 15 minutes)
High energy, pure C. Unlike Kanter and Montiejunas is always in the paint, but unlike Vesely or Biyombo also has a jumpshot and shoots free throws at high percentage. Rolls hard on PnR. Very coachable.
Somehow reminds me of Rasho Nesterovic, 15 years younger and 2 times quicker and more athletic.
He is a teamplayer first, not a star.

One drawback is a large buyout, but it is an added bonus: he could stay in Europe for a year during the lockout.
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