Analyzing Gabriele Procida

May 31st, 2021

By Alan Lu

Recently, Cantu’s Italian-born swingman, Gabriele Procida declared to enter the 2021 NBA Draft.  He is an agile, skilled sharpshooter that can shoot and score the basketball, and he is playing well in his role in the Italian League in professional basketball overseas.  I decided to take the time to watch him play in a January 10th game against Sassari, with thanks to YouTube via Full Basketball Games.  Here are my thoughts on how he fared, as well as how his game may translate to the NBA.

Cantu’s 6-6 swingman, Gabriele Procida is a sharpshooter that possesses above average athletic gifts, and he could project well into a 3 and D role in the NBA.
Mattia Cittadino/Basket Universo)

Gabriele Procida is an offensively skilled guard that can score the basketball in a variety of ways.  He played well on both sides of the court, and he also was able to make some impressively athletic plays at times in this game. Procida showed a solid ability to knock down jumpers to provide floor spacing for his team on offense.  He showed a knack for making spot-up threes off the catch, and he also was able to make one from way out.  He struggled to score on pull-up jumpers as he had more trouble shooting off the dribble, and he even threw up an unsightly airball after hoisting up a contested, pull-up three late in this game.

He also excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  Procida would run the floor to get the ball, and he was able to score on strong drives in transition.  He also made a quick backdoor cut and caught a lob pass to score on a nifty, alley-oop layup off the glass.  Later on, he ran in to score on a powerful, one-handed tip slam that looked to be the highlight of the night.

He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills in this game.  Procida is an unselfish player that would swing the ball quickly to open shooters to get them the basketball, and he also threw an accurate entry pass to set up a score another time.  On the downside, he didn’t look to handle the ball very much in the half court, and he also can be inaccurate with his passes at times.  On one play, he threw a very inaccurate inbounds pass that got intercepted early on.  He also dropped a pass off of a cut that led to another turnover.

Though he didn’t grab many rebounds in this game, Procida was able to get a board on each side of the ball.  He also tipped a ball to a teammate to help his team get a defensive rebound another time.  On the downside, there was one play where he didn’t fight over the screen hard enough to stay with his opponent, so he wasn’t able to box him out, and his team ended up allowing a tip-in score.

Also, Procida played satisfactory defense in this game.  Procida was able to run in to get his hands on a pass to get a steal.  He also jumped on a loose ball after a teammate deflected a pass to help his team get another steal.  He also would aggressively fight through screens to stay with opposing ball handlers.  He also generally would make quick rotations, as he showed decent footwork and a solid motor to guard his opponents.  He also was able to hold his ground when defending in the post, as he forced his man to pass the ball another time.  On the other hand, he would gamble for steals, and sometimes it would lead to scramble situations that would put himself and his team out of position.

In general, Gabriele Procida is an athletic, skilled swingman that can shoot and defend when he is on the floor.  He is a solid offensive player that seems to have a good understanding of the game, and he also would compete hard and be in the right spots defensively.  He will need to improve his playmaking skills and ability to create his own shot.  Still, he possesses a solid blend of shooting skills, athleticism, and basketball IQ that could make him a solid second round pick in this year’s draft, and he could end up being an effective role player similar to Golden State Warriors’ guard, Jordan Poole in the NBA.

Other Notes:

Cantu’s 6-7 Cameroonian forward, Jordan Philippe Bayehe also was able to make some solid plays for his team against Sassari.  He didn’t look to score nearly as much as Procida, and there were long stretches where Bayehe appeared to be virtually invisible on offense.  On the bright side, he played very well in the fourth quarter, as he threw down a powerful dunk and blocked a couple of shots that suggest that he could be a prospect to keep tabs on in the future. Bayehe excelled at scoring on hustle plays. He ran the floor hard to get the ball, and he then promptly scored on a powerful, one-handed jam on the break.  He struggled to score when posting up though, as he missed on a contested, up and under move against a taller, stronger opponent.

He looked to set plenty of screens, and his screen-setting skills allowed his teammates score on open jump shots, and it also opened up a driving lane late in this match.  Bayehe is an unselfish player that will look to keep the ball moving, but he did appear to get away with setting a moving screen late in this game, which would likely have been called an offensive foul instead in more tightly officiated contests. He didn’t grab many rebounds, but Bayehe was able to leap up to get a defensive rebound late in this match.  He also tipped a ball to a teammate to help his team get an offensive board another time.

Plus, Bayehe also played satisfactory defense in this game.  He is a gifted shot blocker that was able to block two shots in the fourth quarter, and he showed solid athleticism and timing, as it enabled him to direct balls to his team after swatting those shots.  He also was able to successfully defend a fadeaway jumper from inside the arc as well as in the post, and he showed decent feet to guard opponents out on the perimeter.  On the other hand, he would sometimes not move his feet well when making his rotations, as it would allow him to get beat on moves to allow scores around the basket.

Overall, Bayehe is an athletic big man that can make solid hustle plays on both ends of the floor.  Right now, his defense is ahead of his offense, and he made impressive defensive plays, as he can play shutdown defense at his current level when he is locked in.  On the defensive end, Bayehe showed some solid defensive skills, and his ability to defend both out on the perimeter and in the post could make him a valuable role player to have off the bench in professional basketball.

He didn’t really show much offensive skills in this game, though. On offense, Bayehe is a rim runner that can finish plays around the basket, and he also can set solid screens, but he looked to be a non-factor for long stretches on offense, and he had trouble asserting himself on that end of the floor. In the meantime, he will need to show teams that can face up and knock down jump shots to score.  Right now, he is an unlikely bet to be drafted this year.  He’ll need to continue to improve and hone his game, but if he does end up making his way to the NBA one day, he could perhaps end up being a capable rotation player similar to Philadelphia 76ers’ big man, Anthony Tolliver in the NBA.

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