POSITION: Power Forward
WEIGHT: 220 lbs
SCHOOL/ TEAM: Dayton
Good size and frame for a modern day 4
Elite vertical lob threat ; Can make plays above the rim
Quick leaper, gets off the floor quick
Very efficient scorer 66% FG in 2018-19 season; 63% in 2019-20
Potential as a stretch 4 (shot 52% (11-21) from 3 as a RS freshman 41% over 2 years
Solid court vision and passing instincts
Can post up smaller defenders
Nice touch around the rim
Unorthodox game plays lefty
Can beat slower defenders to rim on straight line drives
Excellent off the ball cutter
Sprints the floor in transition
AREAS TO IMPROVE
Despite athleticism is stiff and robotic
Only averaged 5.6 rebounds per game as a freshman
Does not offer much as a rim protector
Attacking close outs
Often passes up open J's
Tendency to force passes
Toppin had a monster sophomore campaign and is my choice national player of the year. He averaged 20 points 7 and a half rebounds while shooting over 63 percent from the floor.
This season Obi Toppin was the epitome of efficient and ranked in the 99 percentile in the country and averaged nearly 1.2 points per possession.
Whether it was quick moves in the low post, scoring as the roll man out of pick & roll or attacking the rim off straight line drives, Toppin consistently put the ball in the basket at a high rate.
I don’t consider him an advanced ball handler, but he can makes plays away from the rim and put the ball on the floor.
He has the speed and quickness to attack and beat slower defenders with straight line drives to the basket going to his right or to his left.
Toppin occasionally shows he can make instinctive moves while driving to the rim.
I really like how Dayton maximized his energy and activity and found ways to put the ball in his hands by utilizing him as an off the ball cutter where he converted nearly 78% of his shots.
He’s an elite vertically explosive athlete that reminds me of a young Amare Stoudemire.
At the very minimum he should thrive in the NBA as an above the rim vertical floor spacer that makes life easier for his teammates and is the point guards dream sidekick.
He’s a quick leaper the pops off the floor with great hands and a massive catch radius that makes him the best vertical lob threat in this draft. His world class leaping ability is a major reason why he lead the nation in dunks and efficiency..
Running the floor in transition was a major reason Toppin topped the NCAA in dunks and efficiency. He scored the majority of his points this season on fast breaks and is easily one of the fastest bigs in the country. Toppin excels in the open court floor where can showcase outstanding athleticism with highlight reel dunks..
Although post play in the NBA is fading he was one of the best players in the nation at scoring on the low block while shooting over 55% on post up..
While doesn’t have an Arsenal of post moves or advance footwork, he does have a soft touch around the rim. He simply looks to overpower the defender until he gets to his sweet spot and either finishes with a soft jab or spins into a fade-away touch shot.
He's an efficient 3 point shooter.... When he’s looking to shoot.
Over his 2 year career he’s made over 41% of his 3s on 103 attempts. Last season as a redshirt freshman season he shot 52% from behind the line but only attempted 21 3’s in 33 games.
This season he attempted 82 3 pointers which nearly quadrupled his freshman numbers and converted a respectable 39% from 3.
While his numbers on paper look good there’s still concern, especially if you believe free throw percentage is an good indicator of a players potential to become a good 3 point shooter in the NBA. Toppin hovers around the 70% mark on free throw percentage over the 64 games he played at Dayton
In opinion I believe passing and court vision are the most overlooked and under appreciated aspect of Toppin’s game. I’ve been impressed with his ability to find teammates on the move, which is rare for players who’s main role consists of finishing at the rim. On this play he drives baseline and fires a one handed bullet off the dribble to an open shooter...
Toppin also does a good job of reading double teams and finding cutters or open shooters from the post..
And if we’re being totally honest, Toppin’s passing instincts and ability to find shooters are similar if not better than a few guards in this draft class.
One my my favorite qualities about Toppin’s game is his nastiness. I love how he plays with fire and toughness and if anywhere near the rim he’s looking to dunk everything. He’ll finish over and even sometimes through defenders..
Areas for improvement
Over the last 2 seasons he’s been one of the most efficient shooters in the country and has a good grasp of taking smart shots. However it seems as if he’s not fully confident in his 3 point shooting despite shooting over 40% on 103 attempts. He occasionally doesn’t even look at the rim when he’s wide open or he’ll hesitate and give defenders time to contest his shot..
Another area of concern is his bad misses. This may seem like nitpicking and I’ve mentioned over and over how efficient his been in his 2 years at Dayton, but when he misses, he misses badly with bricks and airballs. This often leaves me to wonder which statistic is more realistic as to where Toppin is as a shooter? The nearly 42% shooter from behind the line or the 70% from the free throw line?
Even though Toppin is arguably the most athletic prospect in the 2020 draft I still have some concerns about his athleticism. Sounds crazy right??
He’s vertically explosive but is all still with tights hips and lacks fluidity. This evident when he puts the ball on the floor and his straight line drive is cut off and forcing him to change directions.
When driving the low man wins and he really struggles getting low and turning the corner when met with resistance..
The last area for improvement is his decision making and cutting down on turnovers. As noted in the strengths video, he’s a really good passer for a big, but he can get careless with the ball and has a tendency to try to force passes in tight spaces. I love the fact that he has the vision to find shooters but often times his high risk high reward cross court passes lead to turnovers.
Rafael Barlowe - March 23, 2020
Obi Toppin is coming off a breakout redshirt freshman season where he was one of the most efficient scorers in the country (66%FG 52% 3FG) while averaging 14 points and 5 rebounds per game.
Toppin will be looked upon to have a bigger role in 2019-20 and scouts will be curious to see if his 3 point shooting is legit. While his percentages were lights out, there was a small sample size as he only attempted 21 shots from 3.
Rafael Barlowe - November 18, 2019