POSITION: Small Forward
WEIGHT: 180 lbs
SCHOOL/ TEAM: Skyliners Frankfurt
Size & Length - Excellent size for a point guard/ forward at 6'9"
Court vision - Displays good court vision and passing instincts to be so young; Uses his size to see over the defenses
Potential - Only 17 years old and still really raw. Has a great set of tools to work with
Versatility - Can play the 1 on offense and defend wing position
Pick & Roll - Good understanding and poise in pick & roll
Defensive potential - Has tools to eventually become an strong defender with his size and length
Scoring - Not much of a scorer at this point in his career, Teams dare him to shoot, does not have an offensive bread & butter or finishing strong
Creativity - Lacks creativity as a scorer, basic handles does not have ability to create for himself with out a screen
Shooting - Poor but improving shooter
Turnover prone - For every great pass he throws, there's a pass that will end up in the stands. Tendency to force passes in tight spaces
Explosiveness - Good athlete but lacks explosive burst to make plays above the rim. Doesn't have great first step
Strength - Physically weak, but thats due to age. Still only 17
Finishing - Struggles finishing in traffic and lack of strength leads to spending a lot of time on floor after attacking basket
Isaac Bonga is a 6'9 point forward out of Germany with a nice base of skills and potential that could lead to him being selected in 2018 NBA draft. At this point in his career, (only 17 years old) Bonga's greatest asset is his passing ability and his long term potential. He's a good, but not great, fluid athlete who is fast in the open court in transition. As he gets stronger he could be a weapon that puts pressure on defenses with his ability to grab rebounds and pass the ball ahead. Offensively, he's still really raw and struggles scoring in the half court. While he has a good handle at 6'9", he lacks the creativity and advanced ball handling moves to get in the lane to create for himself or others. When he does get into the paint he struggles finishing in traffic due to his lack of strength and explosiveness.
Off the ball Bonga really struggles because he's not a good off the ball cutter and teams dare him to shoot. Bonga shot only 8% (1 for 12) from 3 at the 2017 FIBA Under 19's and only 34% overall. He has a tendency to clog up the offense when he doesn't have the ball and when he drives to the rim he's not looking to score. This leads to wild layup attempts because the defense knows he does not want to shoot. Personally I thought he under performed and struggled taking care of the ball (23 assists and 21 turnovers) even though the competition were mostly 2 years older.
Overall, I looking forward to seeing how Bonga progresses this season playing for the Fraport Skyliners in Germany's top league. I love his potential and tools, but I'm curious to see if he can add another skill to his passing ability. Early in the 2017-18 season he's been able to make 3's and keep defenses honest which is a good sign. I think he's need to improve on his handle, shooting and add a mid range pull up and floater to his game. He's unselfish to a fault which is not a bad base line to start with, now its just a matter of becoming more confident on the offensive end.
RAFAEL BARLOWE - OCTOBER 13, 2017