Precious Achiuwa 2020 NBA Draft Profile

MEMPHIS, TN - JANUARY 25: Precious Achiuwa #55 of the Memphis Tigers celebrates a 3 point shot against the SMU Mustangs during a game on January 25, 2020 at FedExForum in Memphis, Tennessee. SMU defeated Memphis 74-70. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)

Precious Achiuwa has been slightly under the radar this season, but his draft stock has continued to climb with his stellar play. He should find a great spot in the NBA.

Precious Achiuwa 2020 NBA Draft Profile

College Career

Achiuwa was part of the loaded Memphis Tigers recruiting class put together by Penny Hardaway. He was supposed to be the second fiddle to James Wiseman, but he was thrown into the main role after the departure of Wiseman. Although it was a slightly uncomfortable role for him, he has improved greatly throughout the season. 

As a 6’9 forward from the Bronx, Achiuwa has become the star of Hardaway’s Tigers roster. Achiuwa averaged 15.8 points and 10.8 rebounds this season on a team that struggled at times. He was awarded AAC Player of the Year, as well as First Team All-AAC and First Team All-Freshman.

Strengths

Achiuwa’s body gives him a lot of advantages. He is extremely athletic and long. There are not many forwards with Achiuwa’s combination of size and speed. He has an unbelievably quick first step and is explosive off the ground. He has his fair share of highlight dunks and will only have more as time continues.

Pairing his athleticism with his guard skills makes him a matchup nightmare. Achiuwa is a point forward that was built for the modern NBA. He has a good handle for his size and as he gets more comfortable with the ball that will only improve. Point forwards are a hot commodity today.

Lastly, Achiuwa is an extremely high energy player. Look no further than last year’s Jordan Brand Classic and McDonald’s All-American games. This high energy leads to a lot of good things for his team and disruptions for other teams. Achiuwa averaged 10.8 rebounds per game including 3.0 offensive rebounds. Rebounding is almost entirely related to effort. Additionally, Achiuwa averages 1.1 steals and 1.9 blocks per game. His energy level and motor put him in positions to make plays.

Weaknesses

One of the main concerns with Achiuwa is his shooting. He shot 33 percent from deep on 1.2 attempts per game and 49 percent from the field. Overall, these are not great numbers, but experts are confident they will improve. Many people have suggested the shooting mechanics and ball rotation of Achiuwa are that of a good shooter.  

Another area of weakness is Achiuwa’s playmaking. He only averages one assist per game which is incredibly low for someone with a 27.7 percent usage rating. In layman’s terms. Achiuwa has the ball in his hands more than most but does not make passes directly leading to points. As a point forward, those assist numbers need to climb heavily up to the five range. Part of this is Achiuwa has poor shot selection. He has a lot of confidence and can force some poor shots, especially when he is searching for his rhythm. 

The last concern is Achiuwa’s touch around the rim. He is explosive and tries to dunk everything, however, he can struggle to finish if it is not a dunk. Achiuwa has a slim frame so he can be bumped off his spot. As he puts on weight this will improve, but he does need to focus on his layup package.

NBA Player Comparison

Pascal Siakam. Siakam is a better playmaker right now, but I expect Achiuwa to improve as time goes on. Siakam was a project much like Achiuwa. Both are high energy players and have a lot of skills useful for the modern NBA.

NBA Draft Projection

Late Lottery.

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