Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Name: Gorgui Dieng Age: 23 School: Louisville
Height: 6’11 Weight: 245 Projected Position: PF/C
2012-13 Stats (As of 3/13/13):
10.3 ppg, 10.1 rpg, 1.9 apg, 2.6 bpg, 1.8 tpg (31.5 minutes per game)
52.0 FG%, 68.1 FT%, 55.9 TS%, 52.0 eFG%
13.2 OREB%, 23.3 DREB%, 18.3 TREB%, 9.6 BLK%, 17.6 USG%
SKILLS & ATHLETIC BREAKDOWN
Dieng’s footwork has improved tremendously over the last 3 years. He is now capable of making moves over either shoulder from either side of the lane, though he will always look to go over his left shoulder with his right hand as a first option. He needs to continue to develop his left hand to keep defenders off balance. He uses his body well to get position in the post, using his lower body and getting wide to keep the defender on his back. He shows good patience with the ball and won’t often force his moves into double teams or heavy traffic. He has developed a nice short jump-hook with his right hand, but his strength is becoming his ability to face up and either drive by his man or hit the mid-range jumper, as well as a quick turnaround jumper off the blocks. He has the ability to finish above the rim, and while his touch has improved, it can still be more of a throw at the basket than a shot. Dieng needs to work on using shot-fakes to get defenders in the air, and look to draw, and finish through contact. He does need to work on the speed of his post moves, as well as continuing to improve his shot selection. Dieng’s moves can be very stiff, especially when he has his back to the basket. Dieng is a very good option at the high post, where he can facilitate ball movement, or hit the foul line jumper. He has also shown the ability to make a quick move to the basket from the foul line area. He should look to work on being able to finish around the basket with his left hand. Also, Dieng needs to watch being in more control when he makes a move after facing up to the basket. The footwork to take more than 2 or 3 steps is still a little shaky.
Dieng has also made strides handling the ball, but is still a below-average ballhandler for his size In the post, he is able to use either hand to make his post move to the basket, though he will always look to go to his right hand if possible, to the point of forcing it that direction. He looks to keep the ball low and minimize his dribbles, though he can lose control if he looks to force the ball into the lane or if he takes more than 2 or 3 dribbles. Normally, he is smart with his dribble and uses it when he has a definite play in mind.
Dieng has continued to improve as a perimeter shooter, especially when used at the high post. He has a high release, almost consistent range out to 13-15 feet, and an average release time. He uses shot fakes well to draw defenders off-balance, and with a good first step for his size, he can get by them to the basket.
Dieng is a very good offensive rebounder, anticipating missed shots well and using his body and length to seal off position for the rebound. He controls the ball well and looks to get quick 2nd chance opportunities if they are available. Dieng is also a threat to crash the offensive boards from the high post, so opposing teams better find him and get a body on him.
Dieng has shown good patience and vision when he has the ball, both in the low and high posts. He has good awareness and can find cutters and shooters on the weakside and he is excellent at spotting baseline cutters from the high post. Dieng makes strong, but catchable passes. He does need to improve his reading of double teams in the post, especially knowing when to keep and when to pass the ball.
Free Throw Shooting
Dieng is a below-average free throw shooter, but he continues to improve. Dieng has a consistent, but not very fluid motion at the line. When he doesn’t finish his full motion, the ball comes out flat and as a line drive towards the rim. Dieng doesn’t get to the line often, almost 4 attempts per game, but in relation to the amount of shots he takes, he does get 1 free throw for every 2 field goal attempts. That is a good start, but as discussed above, he needs to look to draw contact more when he has the opportunity.
Dieng has developed into a very strong post defender. He is physical and uses his upper body well to pressure his man and deny post entry passes. He keeps a wide base, forcing any post moves to go wide around him. He needs to watch not overplaying when denying the ball without help defense behind him to help on passes over the top. His footwork and foot speed have improved, but still have room for improvement. Dieng needs to read his man’s movements better, and learn to cut off angles quicker once his man makes a move. He should also look to use his lower body more to try and force the man away from the lane area. Dieng hedges well in pick-and-roll situations, though he has to watch that he doesn’t come out too far when it isn’t necessary. He recovers well to his man when he hedges out, but he needs to make sure he doesn’t get caught out too far, especially against a strong ballhandler and passer.
Dieng has become an effective perimeter defender, and continues to improve. He positions himself well, allowing him to close on a jump shot when needed but not getting so close to allow him to be beat. He has good lateral movement and foot speed for his size, while staying active with his arms looking to disrupt passing lanes. He needs to do a better job reacting to shot and ball fakes, as well as looking to steer any drives into the help defense.
Help Defense/Shot Blocking
Dieng is a very good help defender around the lane area, anticipating well and getting into position quickly. He is a strong shot blocker with long arms and quick leaping ability. He is capable of blocking shots with either hand, and can get off the ground multiple times in a short span of time. Dieng’s biggest weakness is he needs to read the shooter better and not be so quick to fall for shot fakes, as well as making sure he goes straight up and not using his body to go into the shooter.
Dieng is a very good defensive rebounder, both athletically and fundamentally. He always looks to put a body on someone and he does a very good job keeping his man pinned behind him before he goes for the ball. He anticipates where missed shots will go well and he goes strong after the ball. He needs to remember to not bring the ball down low and make sure the area is clear before he makes his outlet pass.
Dieng runs the floor well and is capable of getting out in front of the defense and scoring at the basket. He handles high passes well and can finish strong above the rim. As he continues to develop his perimeter shot, he may eventually become a decent option as a trailer on the secondary break.
Dieng has improved a great deal in a short period of time, and I don’t think he has quite reached his ceiling as a player. A strong defender and shot blocker, he has the ability to affect the game in different ways. His offense is still a work in progress, but he finds ways to put up points without being a focus of the offensive plan. He understands the game, works hard and is coachable. As long as he continues to fine tune his skill while looking to develop his post-game, he could make an impact as part of a frontcourt rotation.
Draft Value: 1st Round – Middle/Late 1st – #18-25
If you think Dieng has neared the peak of his abilities then you may think this is too high, but I think most teams will realize the untapped potential still there, even at 23 years old. Pair that with his athletic ability and you have a player who can help many teams in a variety of ways very quickly.
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