By James Blackburn
Chris Czerapowicz (G, 6’7”, SO)
3-10 FG, 9 reb, 2 steals, 4 PF, 8 TP
Quick release on 3 point shot- gets feet and shoulders square to rim. Moves well with out the basketball- understands spacing. Great length for the guard position. Good understanding of the defensive end- does a good job on help-side, jumps to the ball, crashes the boards and pursues the ball with 2 hands, contests shots, stays down in defensive position, quick hands, understands how to play D when shot clock is running down, knows where his man and ball are, slides in front of big on weak side when teammate helps over- underrated defender- both on the ball and help side- can guard multiple positions- can switch most screens b/c he can guard any one from a 2 to a 4. Doesn’t stand on the perimeter when shot goes up- crashes the offensive boards.
Active player despite below average athleticism, speed, and quickness- he works hard on both ends to overcome his shortcomings athletically. High Basketball IQ- fundamental in all areas- especially on the defensive end- fundamentals comes from his European influence. When he does drive- he does a great job of getting low to the ground and getting shoulder lower then defender- this allows him to the rim on occasion despite low levels of quickness. Skilled in many areas. Does not make many mistakes and doesn’t force anything offensively. Showed excellent rebounding skills on both skills- attacks ball.
Slow foot speed. Does not have the ability to go by defender- did have one straight line drive lay-in in second half- but its not a strong point in game. Limited speed and athleticism- grounded. I would of liked to see him be more assertive offensively tonight- but to his credit he doesn’t force the issue and doesn’t shoot by shots- has a tendency to disappear on the offensive end- works hard- but isn’t a threat at all times- has 7 games this season where he has scored 5 points or less while getting good minutes- definitely needs more opportunities. Must expand offensive arsenal- just a set shooter this game and didn’t show ability to take man off bounce or create own offense. Needs to get stronger- was in good rebounding position several times but then got pushed or moved out of position by stronger players- was knocked to the floor on multiple occasions as well. His ability to guard multiple positions is an asset and strength in his game now, but I am uncertain in his ability to guard anyone besides a SF at the next level. Seemed to always be on weak side or opposite side where the ball was on offensive end. Foul prone.
The guard from Sweden is averaging 10 points and 4.6 rebounds a game coming into this game. Has several years experience playing in the European Championships and for Swedish Club teams. Averaged 14 pts and 7 reb in the 2011 U20 European Championships playing for team Sweden. Was quiet tonight offensively- struggled with shot- but scored 15 pts and grabbed 5 rebounds in a 13 point loss at Duke earlier this season and has 19 games where he has scored in double digits this year. Hit a big 3 and offensive rebounding in the OT period- and then hit another big shot in second OT- played well on both ends in both extra sessions.
Overall Chris is a better rebounder(looks to box out every time on defensive end) and defender then he gets credit for- definitely better then his stats would indicate. Like most players from Europe he is fundamentally sound with a nice shooting stroke, but lacks in strength, athleticism, and speed. Being only a sophomore and the fact that he plays internationally over the summers, he definitely is going to have the court time to improve. Czerapowicz is a player that NBA scouts should begin to monitor, especially the teams international scouts. A player of his length, work ethic, and skill level has a chance to find a roster spot on a team with in a couple of years- if the NBA doesn’t work out- he will be able to find a career rather easily in Europe.
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