|ESPN.com: Draft 2011||[Print without images]|
|At the age of 16, Bismack Biyombo moved out of his home to begin his professional basketball career.|
|Bismack Biyombo's athleticism and defensive abilities turned heads at the Nike Hoop Summit in Portland.|
“Wallace isn't the sort of sexy comparison that agents love to make. Dwight Howard or Kevin Garnett sells high lottery picks. Not Big Ben. But it's the classic mistake often made at this time of the year. With prospects trying to prove to scouts that they're better than their scouting reports, their agents typically become obsessed with their weaknesses instead of their strengths. Biyombo might have been shooting the ball better, but by NBA standards (and they are the gold standard), he's a terrible shooter. Had they run a workout in which they planted Biyombo in the paint and had various guards attack the basket, Biyombo indeed would have looked like the next Wallace. Even in limited playing time, his 2.3 blocks per game led the ACB this past season. Regardless, most scouts seem unfazed by the workout. Some claim he looked better in Spain. Others blame nerves and the structure of the workout. A few are concerned about his hands, his feel. Everyone is still intrigued. "He didn't play very well," one veteran NBA scout said. "But I didn't expect him to in that environment and with that workout. It really showed off his weaknesses, but they are weaknesses we already knew he had. I do worry about his hands. I worry about turnovers. I'm not sure how great a feel he has for the game on the offensive end. But you can't hide his strengths, either. We know what he could be, and it's very, very attractive. If he is who he's portraying himself to be, he's got a chance to be in the NBA for a long time." Said one GM: "He can play in the NBA right now. If you understand what he is and what he isn't, and you're OK with that, then I think he's a very safe pick. Defense helps win championships. Ben Wallace and Tyson Chandler don't score, but they help their teams in so many ways. If you value defense, length and drive, I think it's hard not to like him. Maybe love him." "Maybe" is a scary word so close to the draft. But it also is a hopeful word this time of the year. There are many "maybe" prospects in this draft. Maybe he flames out. Maybe he succeeds. There are nine more days to place your bets. Given all he's overcome in life, it might be unwise to bet against Biyombo playing five-on-five.
He can play in the NBA right now. If you understand what he is and what he isn't, and you're OK with that, then I think he's a very safe pick.” -- Anonymous NBA general manager