2022 Draft Watch: Assessing Manny Obaseki
September 25th, 2021
By Alan Lu
Manny Obaseki is a highly regarded recruit that will be playing for Texas A&M for the upcoming college basketball season. He was rated as a 5-star prospect by Rivals.com, and he also received a glowing review from 247Sports as an athletic, scoring point guard that can initiate the offense. I decided to take the time to watch him play in a high school basketball game for John Paul II that took place on December 11th, 2020 against Martin, with thanks to YouTube via Lamar Horton. It was split up into two halves. Here are my thoughts on how he fared, as well as how his game may translate to the NBA.
Texas A&M’s 6-4 incoming freshman guard, Manny Obaseki is a very athletic combo guard that did a great job of scoring the basketball to help John Paul II get the win over Martin. He was able to score at will, even though he also seemed to be significantly helped out by the officials by being gift-wrapped borderline calls to get to the free throw line frequently. He also was able to rack up assists, rebounds, and steals, but he was also quite turnover prone in this game.
Obaseki did a great job of scoring on strong drives to the hoop. He has a solid first step off the dribble, and he can quickly get to the rim and finish plays using either hand. He also showed a knack for drawing a hoard of fouls upon his defenders, and he is a foul drawing expert that would contort his body in ways that would get him to the free throw line. He would even get opponents to try to swipe the ball away from him, and he would manage to maneuver in ways that would allow himself to get free throws. He also nearly scored on a powerful windmill dunk, but it didn’t count because the game had ended before he was able to throw it down.
He also shot the ball well on offense. He showed a knack for scoring on pull-up jumpers, and he would often use spin moves to get open prior to knocking down those shots. He was able to score on a floater with his left hand, and he also showed that he can ably score on turnaround jumpers. While he didn’t take many threes in this game, he showed that he can make threes both off the catch and dribble, and he was able to make a spot-up three from way out early on.
He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills. Obaseki was able to collect plenty of assists, but he also turned the ball over quite often as well. For the positives, he is an athletic ball handler that can make drive and kick passes to notch assists, and he also would throw accurate interior passes to find teammates on the move. He also showed that he can pass out of the post. On the downside, he can be quite sloppy with his ball handling, and he would sometimes mishandle the ball or slip on the floor, which would lead him to commit traveling violations. Other times, he would struggle to handle the ball when pressured, and he also committed a charging foul once when handling the ball on the break. He also has a tendency to throw hasty passes that would get deflected and intercepted by his defenders. He also committed a five-second inbounding violation due to not throwing it in on time early in this match.
Also, Obaseki did a very good job of rebounding the basketball. He was quite active at crashing the glass to haul in boards on both ends of the floor, and he has a good nose for the ball. Defensively, he looked to be fairly average. On the bright side, he is an active help defender that will play passing lanes to help his team rack up steals. He was able to intercept numerous passes to get steals in this game. He also managed to blitz a dribble handoff pass to intercept it to get an impressive steal early in the second half. He also was able to pounce on a loose ball another time, and he also poked a ball away to nearly force another turnover. On the downside, he would tend to just guard an area but not a man, and there would be times where he would not even bother to try to close out or contest the shot, which would lead his team to allow three-point baskets to the opposition. He also struggled to defend opponents off the dribble, and he would sometimes get beat off the dribble and struggle to stay in front of his man, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores.
Overall, Manny Obaseki is a very athletic combo guard that may have plenty of upside as a prospect for the NBA. He is a gifted scorer that can quickly get buckets, and he is an aggressive playmaker that can make hustle plays on both ends of the floor. He’ll need to take better care of the basketball and continue to improve his on-ball defense in the meantime. He was a very good get for Texas A&M, and he could be an impact player immediately in college basketball. Obaseki is a talented prospect that could end up going in the late first to the second round range in the 2022 draft, and he could develop into being a solid role player similar to George Hill in the NBA.
Marquette’s 6-1 incoming freshman guard, Cameron Brown also played very well to help John Paul II get the win in this game. He especially thrived as a three-point shooter, and he is an athletic sharpshooter that also showed some passing and defensive skills to help his team get the victory. Brown did a great job of knocking down threes to provide floor spacing for his team on offense. He showed a knack for making corner threes off the catch. He also was able to pull up to knock down a three-pointer off the dribble in transition another time. He struggled more to score when he would look to attack the basket, and he didn’t often look to score if he didn’t have a three-point shot.
He also displayed satisfactory playmaking skills. He is an unselfish player that can pass off the dribble as well as find teammates on the move to notch assists. On the downside, he would sometimes struggle to handle the ball when pressured, and he also threw a couple of passes that ended up getting intercepted. Also, he was able to get a board on each end of the floor to help his team get some rebounds in this game.
Brown also played decent defense. He is an active help defender that would help his team get steals and blocks. He hustled back on defense to poke a ball away, and he also intercepted a pass to get a steal another time. He also rotated to block a mid-range shot, though he appeared to have gotten the opponent’s hand on that play. He also hustled back to poke a ball out of bounds to nearly force another turnover. On the downside, he would sometimes be caught ball watching, and he would be late to rotate, which would allow opponents to score on three-pointers. He also bit on a pump fake, which led his team to give up a mid-range basket another time.
Overall, Cameron Brown is an agile, skilled sharpshooter that did a great job of knocking down three-point shots to help John Paul II get the win in this game. He looks to be a solid, mid-tier prospect for college basketball, and his jump shot could help him go a long way. He’ll need to improve his playmaking skills, but his ability to shoot the basketball could enable him to carve out a playing career in professional basketball and perhaps compete for a roster spot in the NBA someday.
John Paul II’s 6-9 forward and Florida State commit, Cameron Corhen had his ups and downs in his team’s win over Martin. He started off slowly, but he played better as the game wore on, and he was able to show off versatile scoring skills and make solid interior plays on both ends of the floor. Corhen showed a decent ability to score in the post. He used a strong drop step move in order to score on a quick, right-handed hook shot while getting an extra free throw. He also used a pump fake and used a drop step to score on a powerful, two-handed dunk another time. He also managed to score on a strong dunk off of a roll to the rim. Sometimes though, he would rush his shots, which would lead to misses, and he also missed on a fadeaway jumper another time.
He also flashed the ability to shoot the basketball. Corhen was able to knock down an open, spot-up three in the first half, but he struggled to make threes consistently in this game. On the downside, Corhen was quite turnover prone on offense. For the positives, he can make some good passes and can set solid screens for his teammates. He threw a long outlet pass to set up a score for a teammate on the break. He also was able to make a drive and kick pass to notch an assist. He also set a good, on-ball screen to help his teammate get an open driving lane to score. On the downside, he would throw inaccurate passes that would go astray, and he also would struggle to handle the ball when pressured. He also dropped a catchable pass on the break that resulted in a turnover late in this contest.
He also was able to get his fair share of defensive boards to help his team get some rebounds. Corhen also played adequate defense. He showed a knack for blocking and altering shots, and he showed solid footwork to prevent opponents from getting easy shots up off the dribble. He also would deflect passes to make it difficult to get their passes through. On the downside, he would sometimes tend to commit fouls on drives, and he would be too aggressive in contesting shots. Every once in a while, he would give up too much space to shooters, as he would allow them to get open shots.
Overall, Cameron Corhen is a fairly athletic big man that showed some potential to excel as an interior player, and he also showed off an emerging jump shot in this game. He still has to improve his playmaking and rebounding skills, but he could be a prospect to keep tabs on in the future.
Oklahoma Wesleyan’s 5-11 incoming freshman point guard, Derrick “D.J.” Talton played very well for Martin in his team’s loss to John Paul II. He is an agile, skilled playmaker that excelled at making plays on both ends of the floor. He showed a decent ability for scoring on quick drives to the hoop. He also excelled at making three-pointers when he would elect to take outside shots. He struggled more to score on mid-range jumpers, but he was able to make a fadeaway jumper from the mid-range once. He has good foot speed that enabled him to score around the basket plenty of times, but sometimes though, he would struggle to score in traffic, especially when he wouldn’t get foul calls.
He also did a decent job of passing and handling the basketball. Talton is an unselfish player that can make an assortment of passes off the dribble and can find teammates on the move to collect plenty of assists. Sometimes though, he would struggle to handle the ball when pressured, and he also would throw inaccurate passes that would go astray at times.
Plus, he also did a very good job of rebounding the basketball. Talton would hustle to chase down offensive rebounds due to possessing a very good motor, and he would sometimes push the ball quickly up the floor after getting defensive boards. He also played solid defense in this game. He is an active help defender that would intercept passes and pounce on loose balls to get steals, and he would also get his hands on balls to nearly force other turnovers. He managed to successfully draw a charge in this game, and he would frequently contest shots to force misses. On the downside, sometimes he would struggle to defend quicker opponents off the dribble, which would lead his team to commit fouls and allow scores.
Overall, Derrick “D.J.” Talton had a solid showing in this game, and he had a good all-around performance in his team’s loss to John Paul II. He is a skilled playmaker that could be an underrated prospect, and he could be a player to keep tabs on in the future, especially if he can show that he can play well at higher levels.
John Paul II’s then-high school senior point guard, Jalen Guinn also played well in his team’s loss to Martin. He was able to score the basketball in a variety of ways, and he had a good all-around game on this day. He excelled at scoring on spot-up threes, and he also was able to score on hustle plays. He also did a decent job of scoring off the dribble, and Guinn is a high-motor player that can make shots from anywhere on the floor.
He also passed and handled the ball well. He is an unselfish player that especially excelled as a passer on the break, and he also showed that he can make solid passes off the dribble. Plus, Guinn took good care of the basketball. He also did a very good job of rebounding the basketball. He also played decent defense in this game. Guinn would poke balls away to help his team get steals and deflections.
Overall, Jalen Guinn is an agile, skilled combo guard that showed that he can shoot and score the basketball, and he also excelled at making plays throughout this game. He may be quite underrated as a prospect, and he could be a player to keep tabs on in the future, especially if he can show that he can play well at higher levels.
John Paul II’s soon-to-be 6-6 high school junior forward, Gabe Warren played fairly well in his team’s win over Martin. He excelled at scoring on hustle plays, and he primarily excelled at scoring on quick cuts to the hoop. He also scored on a strong put back, and he also drew free throws on a drive another time. He also took a three once, but missed from beyond the arc.
He also was able to leap up to get his fair share of boards on both ends of the floor. Defensively, he had trouble staying in front of quicker opponents, and he would frequently get beat off the dribble, which would usually lead his team to allow scores. Overall, Warren is a fairly athletic, energetic forward that excelled as an inside scorer for his team. He’ll need to improve his outside shot and defense, but his ability to score on off-ball motion plays and motor could make him an underrated prospect. He could be a mid-major prospect for college basketball in the future, especially if he continues to progress as an overall player and hone his game.
I also watched to watch Texas’ incoming 6-6 freshman swingman, Jaylon Tyson play, as he was listed on John Paul II’s roster during the 2020-21 season. However, he did not play in this game against Martin, and so I am still unfamiliar with his game and skill set.