NBA Draft – Top 10 European prospects: Alperen Sengun, the future old school star? (5/10)
A few days before the NBA draft of July 29, 2021, Basketball Europe presents the ten European prospects most likely to obtain the precious sesame: a selection among the 60 best young people of their generation. After Joël Ayayi, Usman Garuba, Ariel Hukporti and Neemias Queta, it is now up to Turkish Alperen Sengun. Elected MVP of the difficult Turkish championship at 18 with high-end stats, the pivot did not initially catch the eye of the NBA scouts, the mock drafts seeing him with difficulty in the lottery picks (15 first choices ). It seems to progress in the forecasts as the deadline approaches, while leaving some skeptical observers, a little, all things considered, as they were previously with Nikola Jokic …
He is only 18 years old but he already reigns over the Turkish championship, of which he was named MVP of the season, in front of players like Nando de Colo or Jan Vesely of Fenerbahce or Shane Larkin, Vasilije Micic or even Rodrigue Beaubois of the winner. of the Euroleague, the Anadolu Efes. It classifies her man, or rather her young man!
To achieve this distinction, Alperen Sengun of course took advantage of the fact that his club, Besiktas, gave him the keys to the truck. But he knew from the start of the season how to exploit them to perfection, by his mobility, his explosiveness, his back-to-basket play, his feints, his hook shots with both hands, his dunks, his precise passes. In fact, despite his young age, the native of Giresun (a small town on the shores of the Black Sea) shows a game old school, much more based on his perfect fundamentals than on his physical qualities. Which earned him glowing comparisons like Kevin Love, Domantas Sabonis or Nikola Jokic.
The neo-international is obviously not yet at the level of these references, but he presents a little the same profile, by his touch of the ball, his support, his vision of the game, his sense of rebound, especially offensive: « I have a sixth sense for the rebound », he explained to The Athletic. “When a shoot goes, I know where the ball is going to land. «
Able to create for his teammates as well as for himself, Alperen Sengun is also an excellent interceptor (nearly 1.5 per game in the league) and a feared blocker in Turkey. However, he is not necessarily considered a great defender, due to his average lateral mobility and a still light physique preventing him from containing larger and heavier pivots.
In fact, if its qualities are of interest to a lot of NBA franchises, its physical limits (a height, 2.08 m, « average » for a pivot, a wingspan of « only » 2.13 m) give rise to
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