Analyzing Bennie Boatwright, Troy Brown, and Chimezie Metu

January 19, 2018

By Alan Lu

I took the time to watch a Pac-12 game that took place between USC and Oregon, as this featured numerous prospects that could end up being picked in the 2018 NBA Draft.  It was a very competitive match that went all the way down to the wire, but USC ended up pulling out a 75-70 win, as they were led by the strong play of Bennie Boatwright, Chimezie Metu, and Jordan McLaughlin to get a victory on the road.  Here are my thoughts on how various prospects fared on this day.

USC’s 6-10 junior forward, Bennie Boatwright played very well, as he had a strong all-around game to help lead his team to a narrow win against Oregon on the road.  He shot the ball well throughout the contest, and he was able to make some solid defensive plays as well.  Boatwright shot the ball very well, as he showed a solid ability to knock down jumpers to space the floor for his team.  He did a great job of making spot-up threes off the catch, and he also was able to make a pull-up, mid-range shot off the dribble.

Plus, he did a good job of scoring in the post.  On one play, he was able to use a pivot move to score on a turnaround jumper, and he also drew an extra free throw.  He also showed a decent ability to score on drives to the basket.  Boatwright can score and draw fouls on patient drives to the hoop, and he also has a pretty good pump fake move that he can use to get past his man.  However, he also can struggle to finish plays in traffic, as he had his shot blocked a couple of times around the basket.

He also showed off adequate playmaking skills.  Boatwright would throw accurate passes to find open teammates, as he can find players out ahead on the break, and he can kick it out to shooters off the dribble.  Boatwright also handled the ball well, and he did a great job of not turning the ball over.  Though he did not grab many rebounds in this game, Boatwright was able to come away with some key defensive boards in the second half, as he managed to chase down balls to collect them.  He also was able to throw a ball off of an opponent to help his retain possession of the basketball once after going for an offensive board.

Also, Boatwright played good defense.  He excelled at collecting steals for his team, as he was able to rip a ball away from a post player once, and he also jumped a quick pass to force another turnover.  In addition, Boatwright was able to block a shot when defending in the post.  But sometimes, he can struggle to defend opponents on one-on-one situations.  He had some trouble defending drives, as this would lead him to allow scores.  Another time, he allowed his man to get deep position when defending down low, and he committed a foul in the post, which led him to allow a three-point play to the opposition.

In general, Bennie Boatwright played very well as he had a strong showing to lead his team to an impressive road win over Oregon.  He is an athletic, multi-skilled forward that can play all of the frontcourt positions, and he can score the basketball in a variety of ways.  With his skill set, he could end up being a solid find for an NBA team in the late first to the second round range of the upcoming draft.

Oregon’s 6-7 freshman swingman, Troy Brown had a fairly good showing in his team’s loss to USC.  He excelled at scoring on patient drives to the hoop, and he also excelled as a facilitator and defender when he was on the floor.  He did a fairly good job of getting scores off the dribble.  Brown is a patient player that has a good first step, and he showed a knack for scoring on runners.  He also managed to score another time off of a baseline drive.   Plus, he also was able to throw down a dunk off of a drive in transition.  But sometimes, he may not always finish plays in the paint when taking the ball to the rim.

Brown also did a good job of scoring on hustle plays.   In this game, he was able to catch a pass inside the paint, and Brown was able to use a pump fake move to score around the basket.   He also managed to draw free throws after getting an offensive board when he was on the floor.  Plus, he also displayed very good playmaking skills.  Brown possesses very good court sense as he plays like a point forward, and he did a great job of distributing the basketball.  He showed a knack for passing off the dribble to set up scores, and he also threw a behind the back pass to find a teammate in transition.  He will also hit cutters, and he can get the ball to his teammates in a variety of ways.  In addition, he is also an adept ball handler that did not turn the ball over once in this game.

He did not grab many rebounds in this game, but Brown was able to collect an offensive board against USC.  However, he also was called for committing an over the back foul when going for an offensive rebound attempt another time.  Also, he played solid defense when he was on the floor.  Brown did a good job of collecting steals, as he was able to rip a ball away from an opposing ball handler, and he also jumped a pass to force another turnover.  He generally would apply considerable ball pressure on the defensive end, and he also contested a three-point shot to force a miss, but there was one time where he had a momentary lapse, as that led him to get beat off the dribble to allow a score to his opponent once.

In general, Troy Brown had a good showing, as he played well on both ends of the floor.  He played a solid brand of basketball, as he had a team-oriented mindset to help Oregon continuously throughout this contest.  He is a smart, skilled basketball player that can contribute to a team in a variety of ways, and he could be a good pick for an NBA team in the mid first round range of the upcoming draft.

USC’s junior big man, Chimezie Metu also played well in his team’s win over Oregon.  He did a good job of scoring the basketball, he also played unselfishly, and he also defended well, as he was able to block a couple of shots emphatically to protect the paint for his team.  Metu did a very good job of scoring on hustle plays.  He was able to throw down multiple dunks after being open underneath the hoop, and he has very good hands to catch lob passes.  In addition, he also was able to throw down an emphatic jam off of a roll to the rim, and he also managed to score on a put back.  Also, he was able to draw free throws off of a backdoor cut another time.

Also, he showed a very good ability to score in the post.  Metu possesses good footwork, agility, and shooting touch, as he was able to score on turnaround jumpers, as well as on strong step through moves to the hoop.  However, he had more trouble trying to score on high post drives, and he also missed on a pull-up, mid-range shot another time.

In addition, Metu displayed adequate playmaking skills.  He is an unselfish player that will make the extra pass to keep the ball moving, and he also does a good job of finding shooters to set up scores for his teammates.  He can aptly pass out of the post, and he also can hit the cutter.  But he did end up committing a couple of turnovers due to carelessness.  Metu did not grab as many rebounds as he could have, but he was able to haul in multiple boards on both ends of the floor, and he showed a good nose for collecting offensive rebounds.

He also showed off fairly good defensive skills.  Metu did a good job of blocking shots on drives to protect the paint on the defensive end, and he would contest numerous shots in the post to force misses.  In addition, he also managed to contest a three to force another miss.  However, he also had some trouble defending in the post at times, as he would occasionally allow opponents to get deep position, which would lead them to score on jump hooks.  Another time, he had a momentary lapse, as he allowed his man to get open underneath the hoop to score around the basket.  He also committed a bad foul on a three-point shooter on a separation occasion as well.  In this game, Chimezie Metu put forth a good showing to help lead his team to a win over Oregon.  He played well on both ends of the floor, and he could end up being a solid pick for a team somewhere in the first round range on draft day.

USC’s 6-0 senior point guard, Jordan McLaughlin quietly played very well, as he nearly collected a triple-double in his team’s road win over Oregon.  He was able to get scores off the dribble, and he did a great job of drawing free throws late in the game.  But his best play on offense may have been when he ran in to swiftly get an offensive rebound prior to scoring on a reverse layup, in which he also drew an extra free throw simultaneously.

McLaughlin also displayed good playmaking skills.  He did a very good job of throwing accurate interior passes off the dribble, as he possesses solid patience and court vision, but he did commit a couple of turnovers due to recklessness, as he threw a bad pass that sailed out of bounds once, and he also committed a charging foul off of a wild drive to the basket.

Plus, he rebounded and defended well when he was on the court.  Defensively, he would play passing lanes to get steals and deflections, and he also managed to contest a drive to force a miss.  But there was another time when he gave his man too much space to shoot, as he ended up allowing his opponent to score on a pull-up, mid-range jumper.  In general, Jordan McLaughlin had a solid showing, as he quietly played well to lead his team to a narrow victory over Oregon.  He is an effective game manager that does a good job of running the point, and he could likely end up being a solid addition to an NBA team’s summer league roster.

Oregon’s 6-7 senior forward, MiKyle McIntosh had a fairly good game in his team’s loss to USC.  He was able to score in a variety of ways, and he also rebounded the ball well when he was on the court.  McIntosh showed a fairly good ability to knock down threes to space the floor for his team.  He was able to make a quick three off the catch, and he also managed to draw three free throws after hoisting up another three-point attempt from beyond the arc.  He did miss two other times from long range, but he was effective at scoring when he would look to take threes in this game.

In addition, he showed the ability to score on drives as well as in the post.  McIntosh managed to use a pump fake to score on a runner, though he had shot blocked another time when looking to score on a drive on the break.  He also managed to score on a strong drop step move when posting up while also drawing an extra free throw, though he missed on two other occasions.  He also showed off decent playmaking skills.  McIntosh was able to kick it out to a shooter off the dribble to notch an assist.  But there was another time when he set a moving screen, which led him to commit an offensive foul and a turnover.

Plus, McIntosh did a very good job of rebounding the basketball.  He would frequently leap up to get defensive boards when he was on the floor.  However, he did commit a foul on an opponent’s put back attempt as he forgot to block out that time, and that led him to allow a score and an additional free throw.  He also displayed decent defensive skills.  McIntosh was able to heap on a loose ball to help his team get a steal, and he also drew a charge when defending a drive.  Another time, he was able to successfully challenge a mid-range shot to force a miss.

However, he had trouble defending in the post, as this would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores.  Another time, he was called for committing a foul when defending an opponent on a drive.  In this game, MiKyle McIntosh had a good showing, as he was able to score in a variety of ways, and he also rebounded the ball well.  He is an athletic, combination forward that could be a potential second round pick in the upcoming draft.

Oregon’s 6-3 senior guard, Elijah Brown quietly had a good game in his team’s loss to USC.  He shot the ball well from beyond the arc, and he also did a good job of distributing the basketball to notch assists.  Brown did a very good job of spacing the floor for his team.  He showed a deft ability to make threes both of the catch and dribble, and he also used a crossover move once to knock down a pull-up three.

He also showed off good playmaking skills.  Brown is a patient, unselfish player that will continually make the extra pass, as he did a very good job of finding open shooters to notch assists.  However, sometimes he can also commit turnovers due to carelessness.  He also was able to chip in to get his fair share of defensive boards when he was on the floor.  Brown also exhibited good defensive skills.  He did a good job of getting steals, and he was able to trap an opponent in a corner prior to receiving an errant pass from him.  He also managed to contest a three to force a miss.  However, he also committed a foul off the ball when he was on defense.

In general, Elijah Brown had a solid showing, as he was able to play well on both ends of the floor.  Even though he no longer is being tasked to be the definitive primary scorer that he was asked to play at New Mexico, Brown has done a good job of playing team-oriented basketball.  With his skill set, he could be a potential second round pick in 2018, as he may perhaps have the skills to be an effective role player in the NBA.

Oregon’s 6-9 freshman forward, Kenny Wooten is a very athletic big man that did a great job of blocking shots on the defensive end, as he would swat numerous shots emphatically to prevent opponents from scoring on drives to the basket.  He also did a good job of scoring in the post, as he would score on turnaround jump hooks.  However, Wooten did not look to score nearly enough, and he did not grab enough rebounds when he was on the floor.  But as he is a gifted shot blocker that can shore up his team’s interior defense, Wooten could be a prospect to keep an eye on in the future, as he could perhaps end up being a similar player to former Miami Heat player, Jarvis Varnado in the NBA.

Other Notes:

Oregon’s 6-9 junior forward, Paul White did a good job of scoring on hustle plays, as he managed to score on a tip in, as well as off of a cut to the basket, and he also scored on a drive once.  Plus, he also managed to draw a charge late in the game.  He also tended to commit turnovers and fouls, but White is an athletic combo forward that was active as a finisher around the basket, and he could potentially end up being a primary scorer for Oregon in the 2018-19 season.

USC’s 6-3 sophomore guard, Jonah Mathews shot the ball well, and he generally had a good all-around game.  He excelled at knocking down jumpers, and he also scored on a baseline drive.  Plus, he threw an accurate lob pass to get an assist, and he also was able to intercept a pass to get a steal.  He did a good job of shooting and scoring the basketball in his team’s win against Oregon, and he could be a player to keep an eye on in the future.

Oregon’s 6-2 sophomore point guard, Peyton Pritchard shot the ball well, as he is a crafty scorer that did a good job of knocking down threes to space the floor for his team, and he would also look to move the basketball, but he struggled with his position defense, as he would be prone to committing touch fouls.

USC’s 6-5 senior swingman, Elijah Stewart did not have his best game as he struggled to score the basketball consistently, but he did manage to show some passing and rebounding skills, and he also showed off good defensive skills.  Stewart played unselfishly, helped out on the offensive glass, but he was able to make some impressive plays on the defensive end.

He managed to make a chase down block to prevent an opponent from scoring on a drive in transition, and he also drew a charge when defending another drive.  While he struggled to make shots in this game, Stewart excelled on the offensive glass as well as defensively, and he could perhaps end up being a defensive specialist in the NBA.