1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

Mario Hezonja - The Next Croatian Sensation

Discussion in 'NBA Draft' started by omgTHEpotential, Sep 20, 2014.

  1. omgTHEpotential

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
    Messages:
    7,386
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    One of three great young Croatian prospects (together with Dario Saric & Lovro Mazalin). Only 19 years old but has been playing in Euroleague & Spanish ACB (the next two best basketball leagues in the world after NBA).

    Born: 1995 (19 yo)
    Height: 6'8

    Strengths:
    - Great shooter
    - Solid passer
    - Solid rebounder for a SG
    - Good leaper, explosive, fast, good on fastbreaks

    Weaknesses:
    - Poor off-ball defender
    - Needs to improve his ballhandling
    - Still has to become stronger
    - Needs to improve lateral quickness

    <object width="560" height="315"><param name="movie" value="//www.youtube.com/v/UnIA8NX_T28?version=3&amp;hl=lt_LT"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="//www.youtube.com/v/UnIA8NX_T28?version=3&amp;hl=lt_LT" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="560" height="315" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object>
     
  2. B-Bob

    B-Bob "94-year-old self-described dreamer"

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2002
    Messages:
    35,002
    Likes Received:
    34,415
    Honestly, unless those clips are altered somehow, he strikes me as a slower, less athletic Mike Dunleavy (Jr.), in terms of max ceiling. That could make for an NBA career though.
     
  3. omgTHEpotential

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
    Messages:
    7,386
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    Really? Hm... The kid is only 19 and is doing stuff like this against the top competition in the world (outside NBA):

    <object width="560" height="315"><param name="movie" value="//www.youtube.com/v/s97sRoz-xag?version=3&amp;hl=lt_LT"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="//www.youtube.com/v/s97sRoz-xag?version=3&amp;hl=lt_LT" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="560" height="315" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object>
     
  4. omgTHEpotential

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
    Messages:
    7,386
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    I mean, he would absolutely destroy the competition in D1 NCAA. I guess the fact that he's European is playing against him.
     
  5. B-Bob

    B-Bob "94-year-old self-described dreamer"

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2002
    Messages:
    35,002
    Likes Received:
    34,415
    I'm not trying to rag on him. He just reminds me a *lot* of Dunleavy at a similar age.

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/EsmwYWtUoK0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
     
  6. Jontro

    Jontro Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Messages:
    34,880
    Likes Received:
    22,786
    Did some heavy scouting on him on 2k14 and drafted him in the 1st round. He's a pretty good shooter.
     
  7. mig0s

    mig0s Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    Messages:
    3,895
    Likes Received:
    689
    Looks slow, a lot of hesitation, nonathletic, slow release. I can see him coming off the bench in a D-League team.
     
  8. krmclaughlin

    krmclaughlin Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    Messages:
    605
    Likes Received:
    219
    Those were actually very impressive. I forgot he was such a good athlete at a younger age.
     
  9. omgTHEpotential

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
    Messages:
    7,386
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    Wow. Those are actually really impressive (albeit it was against an inferior talent than what Hezonja is facing). I think I have to revise my opinion a little bit.

    But damn, this kind of illustrates why white guys suck at basketball. That athleticism in white dudes fades mighty fast.
     
  10. MamboRock

    MamboRock Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2011
    Messages:
    833
    Likes Received:
    49
    His athleticism did not fade. It was just that those pump fakes worked less than 10% of the time in the NBA. And those clear paths to the basket did not exist as often in the NBA either.

    So many NCAA kids have played like Michael Jordan in the NCAA through the years but how many of them have become another MJ in the NBA?

    None.
     
  11. JayZ750

    JayZ750 Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2000
    Messages:
    25,385
    Likes Received:
    13,328
    Exactly.

    PLUS, contested shooting. Which tie's into your pump-fake comment. Dunleavy Jr. ended up not being as good a shooter as he needed to be to have a "great" career. Look at his mid-range shooting percentages throughout his career. His best years were when he was 27-31, as his mid-range shooting improved. Could have been a bit system based, too, as he finally made it out of Golden State, but I believe a lot of it was also about him learning how to adjust his game, how his game fit better in the NBA, and refining his mid-range and contested jumpers. With his athleticism, which was great in college, being average in the NBA, and without a Harden-esque balhandling ability, he needed that time to adjust.

    At 27, he put up nearly 20 points, 5 boards and 3.5 assists per game, and a steal... in 36 minutes which is a lot... but goes to show you at his best he was a pretty solid player. And he shot 42% from three that year. Chandler Parsons hasn't had a season that good yet, and he just got paid $15 million a year.

    So for Hezonja, for one, it's not a horrible comparison. If he has a Mike Dunleavy Jr. career... well that's be on the better side of average for Euro's who've had successful NBA careers. For two, he's still young. For three, highlights are hard. The real questions for him will be, imo, (1) how competent of a ball-handler can he be. If he can be an above average ball-handler, we can use smarts to get where he wants; (2) how capable of a jump shooter will he be in mid-range and when contested. His ball-handling might be better than I think, but I have a hard time envisioning him getting to the rim ala a Harden, Parker, etc. He will have to take what he can get at times. Can he hit those shots at an average clip?; (3) defense... though that's an issue for almost every young player.

    In my view, I don't see him having a better career than Mike Dunleavy Jr... but could be wrong.
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. what

    what Member

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2003
    Messages:
    14,596
    Likes Received:
    2,560
    He actually reminds me of Robert Horry.
     
  13. omgTHEpotential

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
    Messages:
    7,386
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/sfWmneXd5Ow" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
     
  14. FeaR

    FeaR Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2013
    Messages:
    1,009
    Likes Received:
    58
    <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>In-game windmill dunk for projected draftee Mario Hezonja. Broadcaster goes nuts --&gt; <a href="http://t.co/EhgMVGenOu">http://t.co/EhgMVGenOu</a></p>&mdash; David Pick (@IAmDPick) <a href="https://twitter.com/IAmDPick/status/544115176631304193">December 14, 2014</a></blockquote>
    <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
     
  15. donkeypunch

    donkeypunch Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2013
    Messages:
    19,608
    Likes Received:
    22,159
    Good lord, I forgot how stacked that Duke team was. Battier, Boozer, Dunleavy, Duhon, Jay Williams.:eek:
     
  16. ironariza

    ironariza Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Messages:
    309
    Likes Received:
    7
    Kristaps Porzingis is better,
    this guy is not bad
     
  17. omgTHEpotential

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
    Messages:
    7,386
    Likes Received:
    5,894
    8/8 from three:

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/uowz0HBafrk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    And some dunks:

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZUcrZ4y_Ccg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
     
  18. Normalus

    Normalus Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2011
    Messages:
    3,098
    Likes Received:
    582
    sportando.com©
     
  19. i3artow i3aller

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2008
    Messages:
    20,163
    Likes Received:
    37,878
    Super Mario!

     
  20. zeeshan2

    zeeshan2 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2013
    Messages:
    49,793
    Likes Received:
    54,801
    <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Croatia's 6-8 Mario Hezonja about to enter NBA Draft. Might be only guy this year that could win BOTH dunk &amp; three-point contests some day.</p>&mdash; Fran Fraschilla (@franfraschilla) <a href="https://twitter.com/franfraschilla/status/591340116855001089">April 23, 2015</a></blockquote>
    <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
     

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!


    Upgrade Now