Sleeper Report: Juan Fernandez (Temple)

By James Blackburn

Juan Fernandez Temple Basketball
Photo: OwlSports.com

Juan Fernandez (G, 6’4”, Senior)

Game Scouted: Temple @ Texas
Texas wins 77-65
Box Score

Stats
31 min, 2-8 FG, 4 assist, 2 steals, 5 TP

Strengths
Good sized guard, strong, solid frame. Keeps his dribble until he passes or shoots- always seeing the floor in the process- very good passer. Not a playmaker in the traditional sense of breaking down defender with dribble and getting to paint and kicking, but a playmaker none the less. His size allows him to see the floor, cutters, and the open man. He keeps his eyes up and is constantly scanning the court. Makes the smart and correct pass. Made a behind the back pass off a pick and roll to an open shooter in the first half. Gives the ball to players in positions for easy scores, which leads to high assists numbers, leads team in that category. Takes care of the ball- doesn’t turn the ball over. High basketball IQ, smart, makes the right plays at the right time. Takes good shots. Uses body and size well. Efficient. Sees the play before it happens on both ends.

Good defensive player- puts himself in good position, jumps to the ball, good help defender, plays the passing lanes well. Good closeout, contests shots. Anticipates and is in the right place at the right time defensively. Smart and deceptive defensively.

Good 3 point shooter- can come off screens- gets feet set and lets it go. Also showed the ability to shoot the dribble pull up, although he is a better set shooter. Struggled shooting the ball today, but his misses were off the back of rim and straight. Good shooting form- elbow in, feet set.

Well conditioned, plays a lot of minutes (over 34 mpg).

Plays well without the ball. Sets up cuts well off screens, changes speeds, fakes one way and goes the other. Does a nice job of instigating contact with defender to create space to come off the screen, receive ball, or to get shot off.

Weaknesses
Needs to improve ball handling-had to turn his back when bringing ball up court a few times. Can’t really create his own shot- doesn’t have the speed or athleticism to get by man or blow by defenders for lay-ups. Not a great rebounder, especially needs to improve offensive rebounding- only 1 all year on that end. Slow laterally on defense- would have trouble guarding quicker and shorter PG’s at next level- His IQ and size helps him compensate for lack of speed at this level.

Overview
Smart experienced guard- has been a starter since first game on campus. Can play and guard either guard position. Doesn’t have big time speed to blow by defenders, but changes speeds and size allows him to see over the defense and make the pass to the open teammate. His team is better with him on the floor, controls the pace, tempo, and flow of game. Is a great fit for this Temple team. Besides his shooting, scoring, and passing abilities, most of what Fernandez does for his team does not show up in the box score. Impacts the game in other ways besides scoring and makes others better. Reminds me of a combination of Jason Kidd now in his old age and Jaycee Carroll who played for the Boston Celtics summer league team last year in Orlando. Both players are good shooting PG’s with size. I see him taking a similar path as Carroll, may receive a summer league or training camp invite, but is likely to end up playing in a first league somewhere overseas.


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