Height: 6’9” Weight: 234 Wingspan: 7’2” Age: 21 College: Gonzaga Hometown: Japan
Rui Hachumira was one of the most productive players in college basketball this year, averaging 26.1 points per 40 for one of the best teams in the country. He can help with a team with his finishing, and versatility. He can hurt a team by not being able to stay in front of the ball defensively, and with turnovers. He had .8 A/to ratio this year, and that needs improved. There are also questions about whether or not his scoring will transfer to the NBA. He is a tweener, and i’m not exactly sure what his role will be in the NBA. He likely won’t post up near as much in the NBA as he did in college, and he needs more confidence in his three ball. What situation he gets in will be key to his success. He has defensive potential because of how athletic he is, and he plays hard. He wasn’t productive on that end in college because his instincts aren’t there but his body and effort are encouraging.
For someone that isn’t confident in his 3 ball Rui was an excellent spot up player last year, and was in the 93rd percentile. This is encouraging because he will spend a lot of time here at the beginning of his career. He only shot no dribble jumpers 36% of the time and he had a very efficient 1.242PPP. He was 15-36 from the college three point line this year, but only taking 36 threes makes me question whether he will have to confidence to shoot NBA threes at all. He looks more comfortable in the mid range, and if he doesn’t get more comfortable beyond the arc this will hurt his teams spacing. He’s got a solid pull up jumper when attacking closeouts, and had a pretty efficient 1.12PPP on these. He has a very good 8-10 foot jumper. However, if he’s not taking and making NBA threes consistently teams will close short on him, and he won’t have options to attack closeouts off the bounce. He was most efficient attacking closeouts, and getting all the way to the rim. He had 1.458PPP in this category, and this makes sense because finishing is his best skill. He was in the 84th percentile as a finisher overall last year. He is very strong, and plays through contact very well. He uses mostly his right hand around the rim, but occasionally shows a left. He is good at cutting to the right spot, and getting easy finishes around the rim. He also was very efficient in transition last year, and this is mostly because of his finishing ability, and effort running the floor. He is most valuable in a role where he has many chances to finish around the rim, so he will be best suited with four other shooters until he gets more confidence on his three.
Rui scored a lot in the post last year, and was in the 92nd percentile in post ups including passes. He can go both ways, but primarily turns over his right shoulder, which is surprising for a righty. He also has a face up game, and loves driving left when he faces up. This was the main way he scored, it should translate some depending on what team he’s on, but not as much as it worked in college. Most NBA 4 men can guard him in the post and perimeter. He still should get some post ups because of how skilled he is down their, but unfortunately most NBA coaches don’t have many schemes that get the ball in the post a lot. While not great Rui is a capable shot creator. He was in the 65th percentile in isolations including passes. He has a good shot fake, and a solid jab step game. He would be a better iso player if he trusted his three more, so defenders can’t sag off him. He is fast for his size, so if bigs have to get up on him at the three point line it will be tough for them to stay in front. I’d like to see him used as a small ball 5 sometimes, and if he trusts his three point shot it will be impossible for 5’s to stay in front of him, other than the few very mobile 5’s (Davis, Capela). He is also strong enough to guard most 5’s outside of Embiid, and maybe a few others, so it’s not a problem defensively playing him at the 5. He is also a good Pick and Roll man that was in the 80th percentile last year. He has great hands, and is a great finisher. I believe Rui can be an effective small ball 5 at times.
Rui has improved, but is not where he needs to be defensively. He has the body and athleticism to be a great defender, but his instincts are a work in progress. He is slow to react when guarding on the perimeter, and gets beaten off the bounce often. He’s not the post defender that his physical tools suggest. Despite all this, he does play with good effort, so I think he can become an average-solid defender, but will never be a great defender.
Ruis career and role depends a lot on the situation he’s in. It is likely that he is an efficient scorer off the bench that plays 12-15 minutes a game. He just doesn’t have an elite skill that you can rely on him to give the team. He is solid, and plays hard but he’s a tweener at this point. He won’t post up as much in the NBA, and doesn’t trust his 3 ball. He trusts his mid range a lot, but mid ranges are a lot less efficient than threes in general. He has the potential to develop into a starter level player if he trusts his 3 more, and becomes a better defender (specifically staying in front of the ball). He also could develop into a starting 5 if the NBA keeps going the small ball route, because he can take advantage of mismatches. It is more likely that he will be an efficient role player scorer off the bench, and if in the wrong system that doesn’t let him play to his strengths, he could be a benchwarmer, especially if he doesn’t improve defensively.