Analyzing Gui Santos and Joao Pereira in an NBB Basketball Game

April 8th, 2022

By Alan Lu

Today, I took the time to watch Gui Santos and Minas square off against Cearense in an NBB basketball game that took place on December 19th, 2021, with thanks to YouTube via NBB.  Gui Santos is a Brazilian basketball player that had been receiving some draft buzz this past season, and he’s an athletic, energetic swingman that plays in Brazil’s top professional league.  His team ended up getting the win, but another prospect ended up catching my attention instead, Cearense’s 6-8, 2000-born forward, Joao Pereira, also known as Mãozinha, and he is an athletic, high-motor combo forward that made a lot of hustle plays to help his team in this game.  Here are my thoughts on how both prospects fared, as well as how their games may currently stack up as prospects for the NBA.

Gui Santos is an athletic, energetic swingman that is considered a borderline second round candidate for the 2022 draft.
(Photo:
Divulgacao/Minas Tenis Clube, via Esporte News Mundo)

Gui Santos had his ups and downs in his team’s win over Cearense.  His team may have won by double digits, but his teammates didn’t always look for him on offense, and Santos didn’t shoot the ball as well as hoped in this game.  On the bright side, he would make hustle plays, and he still was able to make some solid team plays to help his team in this contest.

Santos showed a knack for scoring on hustle plays.  He ran the floor to score on the break while drawing an extra free throw afterwards.  He also made a quick backdoor cut to the hoop, and scored on a powerful, two-handed dunk.  He also was able to make a quick, open three off the catch.  However, Santos struggled to knock down threes consistently, and he especially struggled to score off the dribble.  He tried to score on an aggressive, right-handed drive another time, but missed on a wild floater instead.

He also showed off adequate playmaking skills.  Santos can make plenty of drive and kick passes to get the ball to open shooters, and he also can throw long outlet passes to get the ball to his teammates on fast breaks.  He also threw a sharp skip pass to a corner shooter to notch an assist.  On the downside, he can tend to struggle to handle the ball when heavily pressured.  He tried to split a double team on a drive to the hoop, but took one too many steps and was called for a traveling violation.  Another time, he dribbled the ball for a bit too long, and an opponent then stole the ball away from him.

Plus, he also did a decent job of rebounding the basketball.  Santos was able to chase down plenty of defensive boards, and he would tend to either bring the ball up or quickly push it up the court afterwards.  Santos also played satisfactory defense in this game.  He was able to run in to intercept an errant pass to get a steal, and he also jumped on a loose ball to help his team get another.  He would actively contest threes to force misses, and he also hustled back to contest a shot in the post to get a stop another time.  He also rotated to defend a drive to cut off penetration, which enabled him to help force a passing turnover.  On the downside, he can sometimes be late on his rotations, which can lead him to give up too much space to shooters or to allow opponents to score on fast breaks.  Another time, he defended a drive too physically, which led him to foul an opposing ball handler on that possession. Overall, Gui Santos put forth an uneven performance in his team’s win over Cearense.  He was able to make some solid plays on both ends of the floor, but he struggled with his outside shot, and sometimes he would go for stretches without touching the basketball.  He will need to improve his outside shot and find ways to get more playing time in the meantime.  He projects to be a borderline second round candidate, and he could project into a 3 and D role in the NBA similar to current Los Angeles Lakers’ veteran swingman, Kent Bazemore in the association.

Joao Pereira, also known as Mãozinha, played very well in his team’s loss to Minas.  He is an athletic, energetic combo forward that thrived at making energetic plays on both ends of the floor, and he has a terrific motor that enabled him to consistently make plays throughout this game.

Pereira thrived at scoring on hustle plays.  He showed a knack for scoring off of put backs, backdoor cuts, and on fast breaks.  He would score on quick put backs off of offensive rebounds.  He also managed to score on a backdoor cut.  Pereira also ran the floor to score on a high-flying dunk on the break.  He also sprinted hard after helping to save a ball to get a defensive board, and then received the ball as he then utilized a quick, crafty Euro-step move to his left to score smoothly in transition.  He is a solid athlete that can finish plays above the rim, and he showed good footwork when handling the ball on the break.

Also, Pereira moved off the ball to make a quick, open spot-up three off the catch.  He was unable to make threes consistently, but he did look to take plenty of them in this game.  He also showed off satisfactory playmaking skills.  Pereira was able to throw a nifty, behind-the-back bounce pass to an open teammate at the rim to notch an assist due to possessing good passing skills and court vision. 

He also would set good, firm on-ball screens to help his teammates get open driving lanes.  He didn’t look to handle the ball very much, but he can handle the basketball well in short segments and in the open court.  On the other hand, he once telegraphed a pass that ended up getting intercepted by a defender.

Also, Pereira showed a solid ability to rebound the basketball.  He would chase down balls to get rebounds for his team on both ends of the floor, and he also was able to outwork his opponents to get boards due to possessing a terrific motor.  On one good play, he hustled for a loose ball and jumped up to save it to a teammate to help his team get a defensive rebound, and Pereira kept sprinting to get them on the break, which enabled him to score afterwards.

He also played decent defense in this game.  Pereira was able to hustle to make a chase down block off the glass to a teammate to help prevent an opponent from scoring on the break.  Plus, he also would deflect passes due to possessing solid length, timing, and instincts.  He also would rotate to aggressively switch onto opposing ball handlers due to possessing solid footwork.   He also would actively contest threes to force misses.  Also, he moved his feet well laterally once, and he was able to actively stay in front of an opposing ball handler to force a shot clock violation.  Sometimes though he would be too aggressive in trying to go for steals when defending opposing ball handlers, which would lead him to commit reach-in fouls.

Overall, Joao Pereira, also known as Mãozinha, had a strong showing in his team’s loss to Minas.  He is an athletic, high-motor combo forward that makes highly energetic, hustle plays on both ends of the floor.  He will need to improve his outside shot and add more muscle to his frame, but he already seems to play with the 3 and D mentality that could enable him to excel as a role player in the NBA.  He has been very productive in Brazil’s top league, the NBB this season, and he has a tremendous motor that could enable him to be a solid role player in the NBA, similar to former NBA player Mirza Teletović in the association.

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