Devin Sweetney SF – 6’6, 220lbs – Born 23rd October 1987 Capital City Go-Go As a pro, Sweetney has played in 10 different countries, for 18 different teams, including a training camp stint with the Denver Nuggets in 2015. He had not however played in the G-League since his first professional season, when he was selected in the fourth round of the 2010 D-League Draft by the Tulsa 66ers. The 66ers no longer exist and the league has been renamed since then, so that was truly a different era. Nevertheless, Sweetney popped up on the Go-Go’s roster, initially as a local tryout player but sticking around until early February despite being waived and brought back twice, before being waived for good and finishing his season back in Mexico with the Venados de Mazatlan, averaging 20.5 points and 6.9 rebounds per game. For the Go-Go, Sweetney averaged 3.6 points and 1.7 rebounds in 10.1 minutes of 17 games, smashing down dunks in the way that he does but struggling to hit outside shots, also par for the course. He is a very athletic 6’6 wing who runs hard and often and finishes with power, yet who handles little, creates little unless it is born out of his physical profile, and whose defence is free-roaming in nature. It is too late to have upside now, yet he is a decent pro at the right level. – 20th June, 2019 This above is extracted from the following page in the The Basketball Manifesto, an entirely free 3,775 page, 1.2 million word-ish basketball reference book which contains reviews, strategies, ideas, opinions, and a whole lot of scouting on men’s world basketball. – View tons more player profiles like this from the Manifesto here
Michael Orris PG – 6’3, 190lbs – Born 8th August 1994 Capital City Go-Go Orris spent some time with both the Fort Wayne Mad Ants (as a returning player; quickly waived when Ben Moore became available) and Capital City Go-Go (as cover for Chris Chiozza’s stint with Team USA), but played only four games and 51 minutes across the two. He is a fringe G-League player who is nonetheless well suited to the plug-in cover role he now seems to fill. Orris is not an athlete nor a shooter, lacking dynamicism, the ability to create a shot, and the ability to hit them. What he is instead is a pass-first prober, someone always looking to get inside the paint and pass through the space, either to a roll man or someone in the dunk position. Unselfishness is good, but one clutch college postseason tournament jump shot aside, Orris has never demonstrated the ability to change gear beyond that. [2020 UPDATE: Retired, now coaching.] – 20th June, 2019 This above is extracted from the following page in the The Basketball Manifesto, an entirely free 3,775 page, 1.2 million word-ish basketball reference book which contains reviews, strategies, ideas, opinions, and a whole lot of scouting on men’s world basketball. – View tons more player profiles like this from the Manifesto here.
Oleksandr Kobets SG – 6’5, 201lbs – Born 15th April 1996 Capital City Go-Go Kobets began the season with the Go-Go as an allocated player after a one-day training camp contract with the Wizards (who tried to do the same with compatriot and namesake Oleksandr Mishula, but that did not happen for whatever reason). He did not initially join the Go-Go, but was acquired in early November, playing eight minutes over three games before being waived after tearing his ACL in a game for his Ukrainian national team. He did not play again elsewhere all season, and thus his first season in America was unfortunately a dud. When healthy, Kobets is a wings-and-corners shooter, a confident offensive player who uses spot-up shooting, up-fakes and a turnaround to space the floor; not handling much other than to drive close outs yet a confident offensive player whose upper body strength allows him to finish through contact if he gets to the rim. The question was whether he had the physical tools to defend the wing positions at the NBA level. After this serious injury, that will definitely be the question again when he returns. – 20th June, 2019 This above is extracted from the following page in the The Basketball Manifesto, an entirely free 3,775 page, 1.2 million word-ish basketball reference book which contains reviews, strategies, ideas, opinions, and a whole lot of scouting on men’s world basketball. – View tons more player profiles like this from the Manifesto here.
Darel Poirier C – 6’10, 230lbs – Born 27th July 1997 Capital City Go-Go Unrelated to Vincent, Darel Poirier arrived in the G-League from his native France, where he had his foundations in the Centre Fédéral de Basket-ball team, the squad made up of players from the French National Institute of Sport, Expertise, and Performance (INSEP), and so often the starting point for so many of the country’s best. After graduating from INSEP in 2015, Poirier was signed by the top division team Cholet, but barely played for them, spending time instead with their under-21 team and then on loan to second division Charleville-Mezieres. For them, Poirier averaged 4.6 points, 2.8 rebounds and 0.6 blocks per game, shooting 22.8% on a three-point stroke he had not much used before. A face-up four or occasional five with a good handle, Poirier still needs a whole bunch of seasoning, particularly with regards to his shot making and shot selection. It seems odd that he would leave the French development system to come to the G-League at this time with no obvious shot of the NBA, and he is only slightly younger than the comparable Aaron Epps with a less distinguished résumé. Nevertheless, a decently athletic 6’10 player who can and will handle is always a good combination. Eligible for the NBA Draft this past summer, Poirier is an athlete and dunker, with long arms, energy and a good motor. The physical tools give him switch potential, and although his metrics for the year are unflattering, he did at least noticeably get better during the season. Poirier cuts to the rim and finishes explosively, correctly understanding that a player of his athletic prowess should always catch the ball on the move where possible. He does however lack feel for the game, […]
Pe’Shon Howard PG – 6’3, 185lbs – Born 10th December 1990 Capital City Go-Go Five years since the completion of a college career spent at Maryland and USC, Howard has had a strange professional career. For his first season, he signed in the German third division of all things with Weissenhorn then left after only a couple of months, reportedly due to changing his mind about being there. He then went unsigned until 2016 and a short stint with Rayos de Hermosillo in Mexico, then joined the D-League with the Reno Bighorns, briefly popped back to Mexico last season, and has now joined up with the Go-Go. He has thus spend more time not under contract than under contract. Nevertheless, here now in the G-League, he has established himself as a solid role playing piece of guard depth. At all those stops, Howard has never been the kind of player who can consistently get beyond the first line of a defence, get into the in-between areas, move the opposition around and explore the space. He is instead more of a three-and-D type of point guard, a solid distributor who is much more of a full-court point guard than a half-court one. Howard is a distinctly sub-par finisher at the rim – a very poor one, in fact – yet he likes to push the ball anyway, and gets to the line when he does so. Rarely does he get to the rim in the half-court, instead being the type to bring the ball up, hand it off and move off the ball for a jump shot. When he was playing alongside Chris Chiozza, a man who could do more of the playmaking, this role suited him well. Known for being a defender in his college days, Howard still […]
Kellen Dunham SG – 6’4, 205lbs – Born 18th June 1993 Capital City Go-Go Dunham is about as pure of a shooter as there can be. He is on the court to move about, use screens, spot up then get jump shots away. Anything beyond that is an unexpected bonus. Playing almost exclusively off the ball, Dunham intrigues purely because of how many points he could potentially give a team without needing to take a single dribble. If he does dribble, it is to turn a strongly closed-out three-point shot into a pull-up two, and not much more than that. Dunham’s quick-release allows him to shoot through even the tiniest gaps, and he has NBA range on his shot. As with any such player of this type, the question from an NBA point of view is are they big enough to have success doing this simple package at that level, and can they hold their own defensively. In the case of Dunham, these concerns are valid. He lacks for NBA size, length, strength and athleticism; the ability to get shots away so quickly as to not need to fight for position much is a virtue, but anyone fighting him back is going to win. This is not Klay Thompson we are looking at here, other than in style of play. Because he needs setting up for everything, Dunham can go through quiet spells offensively, and on the rare occasions he does get to the rim, he is a poor finisher. With no post game, little handle, in lacking the tools to defend his position and in being inevitably physically overmatched at the next level, Dunham is more Diebler than DiVincenzo. So the very open nature of the G-League is a suitable level for him – play here, get […]
Duje Dukan PF – 6’10, 220lbs – Born 4th December 1991 Capital City Go-Go The Dooj was one of the unlikeliest NBA players of a generation when he signed with the Sacramento Kings in the 2015-16 season, a move made even more unlikely by the fact that he managed to survive on the roster for the entire campaign. He had been a marginal player at Wisconsin, not even cracking 1,000 total minutes played in five years with the program, and yet somehow he made the NBA, presumably on the assumed potential of his jump shot despite having hit only 32.8% from three-point range with the Badgers. Dukan’s career since that time, apart from a very short stint back in his native Croatia with Cedevita Zagreb (RIP) in the first half of the 2016-17 season, has all been in the G-League. Perhaps he is looking for another call-up to the NBA. He is only an average G-League player at this point, a smooth yet undynamic reserve power forward option who combines some decent shooting with paint touches and smart slips to the rim, yet who is mismatched for speed defensively and mostly only defends via the foul. But while a decent-enough athlete when running forwards, Dukan lacks for lateral speed and strength, and is a targeted player on the defensive end. Dukan’s offensive smoothness when putting the ball on the floor or facing up from outside has some value, but he has to be making his shots to be a positive on the court. Although, to be honest, if his previous call-up taught us anything, it is that he doesn’t have to stand out from the crowd to be the one picked out from it. – 20th June, 2019 This above is extracted from the following page in the […]
Dikembe Dixon SF – 6’7, 201lbs – Born 6th September 1996 Capital City Go-Go Anyone can of course declare for the NBA Draft whenever they like. Particularly those playing in college who are giving away their marketable skill for free due to the stupid archaic nature of NCAA basketball that ascribes all kinds of mythical qualities and puts all kinds of importance on why the athletes should not be paid other than by scholarship, all of which is a conceit to obfuscate the fact that it is a bloody convenient historical relic and nothing more. Dixson, however, may have been one of the few who would have benefited from staying that one extra year. Dixson declared last season as a redshirt sophomore, and, at the age of 22 when he did so, fair enough. That said, his averages in that sophomore season had all regressed from his freshman year, seemingly still hobbled by the knee injury that ended his second season after only 10 games. He thus entered the draft without momentum or the cleanest CV; he had helped his UIC team to a runners-up finish in the CIT that season, yet with him back in the fray, maybe they could have made the platform that was the NCAA Tournament. Nevertheless, Dixson went pro, and after going undrafted, he joined the Miami Heat for summer league. Unable to get an NBA contract after that and despite further workouts, he initially went to the Lebanon for a stretch, then joined the G-League, initially with Windy City then latterly traded here to Capital City. The Intrigue surrounding Dixson comes from his athleticism. He is a big time run-and-jump athlete in a wiry 6’7 frame that has high-level potential. Potential both offensively, where he runs the court freely, and defensively, where […]
Mike Davis PF – 6’9, 225lbs – Born 21st October 1988 Capital City Go-Go Davis’s 35.4% of possessions used on cuts this past season was by far the highest percentage anywhere in the G-League. The next highest mark was a full 10% less – Roger Moute A Bidias, for what it’s worth – and to anyone who remembers Davis as being the midrange jump shooting specialist of his Illinois days, that is par for the course. Get him the ball inside the arc on the move, and he will either flail to the rim or put up the jump shot. Get him the ball in the post, and he will either flail to the rim or turn and put up the jump shot. Et cetera. Davis is a man who very much knows his comfort areas on the court – he has never stretched that jump shot out to three-point range, he tends to avoid going up strong near the rim, and prefers to be in that sweet sweet mid-range area for a jump shot. A smooth athlete with decent length albeit not much strength, Davis mostly plays defence by going to the defensive glass. He did not, and still does not, get too physical around the basket or try to win many blocked shots. Indeed, Davis has not really changed his game any in the ensuing professional years; he loves the mid-range, he goes to the glass, he runs quite well, and the rest is profit. It has earned him a few professional seasons at reasonable standards of competition, and a place on G-League benches. There appears to be no upside beyond this as he enters his thirties. So be it. This will do. – 20th June, 2019 This above is extracted from the following page in […]
Quinton Chievous SG/SF- 6’6, 225lbs – Born 31st December 1992 Capital City Go-Go Chievous has now spent almost his entire professional career in the G-League, leaving only for very brief stints in Finland and Mexico to top and tail last season. It is a league that suits an athlete such as himself; the G-League plays at a higher pace than quite possibly everywhere else in the world, so anyone who can get up and down the court stands to look better by default. Two things that Chievous loves to do are crash the glass and run the court. His handle is loose and he rarely uses it; instead, Chievous plays hard to go and win the ball, He leaks out, is forever running to the basket, and is looking for the contact to finish with a righty bank shot. A good athlete with leap and body control, Chievous also has good size for a high level wing, even if his ball skill level is below what would be ideal. And he has not let that lack of ball skill inhibit him from impacting the game in a certain way. It is admittedly a limited offensive impact built on cuts, which in turn relies upon teammates finding him. If plays are run for his athleticism off the ball, Chievous has the speed to exploit the baselines (particularly from his preferred right side), cutting down the lane and finishing with some explosion. If they do not, however, Chievous is somewhat limited to transitions, mediocre spot-ups and whatever he can get on the glass. Defensively, he plays with the same energy and deflects the ball, expressive and pressuring but a little bit out of control positionally. In total, then, Chievous is a mistake- and turnover-prone player who lacks conventional wing skills […]
Isaiah Armwood PF – 6’9, 215lbs – Born 28th December 1994 Capital City Go-Go to this season had been a surprise. He barely played in Italy’s Serie A with Trento as a rookie, dropped down to the Italian second division in his second season, dropped further down to the Japanese third division of all places in his third season, and was in Hungary last year, an improving league that attracts a decent calibre of third or fourth tier import, but which does not get many 6’9 athletes like this in it. It is thus perhaps not surprising that Armwood starred in that League, leading it in blocks with 2.0 per game, alongside 17.5 points, 9.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists per contest. This year has probably been the best of his entire professional career. Armwood was an excellent defensive player for the Go-Go this year, as a player of his physical profile should be. Long, wiry and a decent athlete, Armwood contests everything, takes charges, free-roams in space to great effect and is an improved man-to-man defender. He rebounds in traffic and uses his length, hoping to compensate for a lack of core strength. Armwood may not be the player who can get and hold position on the inside, but if ever he is out of the play, his mobility can get him back into it. His offensive game is a bit more awkward, and there are limited ways in which Armwood can help. He is not a ball-handler and only rarely takes mid-range jump shots, and the aforementioned problems with gaining position negates any significant post-up offence. Armwood instead runs the court well, dunks everything, attacks the boards, tips the ball on the offensive glass, uses his spring, jumps high to release any kind of shot (apart from […]
Noah Allen SF – 6’7, 215lbs – Born 1st February 1995 Capital City Go-Go Three years at UCLA saw Allen barely leave the bench. He recorded only 71 games, 604 minutes and 84 points in that time, never finding a role, never winning the coaching staff’s confidence, and seemingly always being recruited over. But having graduated in only three years, Allen went to Hawaii and finally established himself, averaging 15.7 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game in 30 games for the Rainbow Warriors. Clearly, Allen took on a much bigger offensive role as a senior, itself helped in part by the drop in standard. Yet a more empowered Allen showed he could do more with the ball in his hands than he ever did at UCLA. Allen does not have a tight handle on the ball, not able to change direction quickly, handle in traffic or regularly go to his left. Yet with a smooth 6’7 frame and a long smooth stride, he only needs to do enough to attack closeouts, take on the straight line drives and get to the rim in transition. This, he did, and as a transition lane filler, baseline cutter, right wing runner and occasional post-up to a righty hook guy (something the Go-Go did not use but which he did rank efficiently in albeit in a small sample size), Allen found a way to use his good physical profile offensively. Also demonstrating some drive-and-kick vision on those cuts, Allen is an unselfish player who found a good flow. For it to work, though, Allen needs to hit enough shots. Struggling to finish when contested given his lack of core strength, the relative lack of handle means a lot of jump shots. And neither off the dribble nor the catch has […]