If you have never heard of Bismack Biyomo, do not feel bad. Up until about a month ago, neither had I and I research the NBA Draft and its prospects like I was Jonas Salk searching for a vaccine to cure polio. Allow me to pull you out the dark and introduce you to Biyombo whose 2011 NBA Draft stock is soaring off the charts.
By: David Kay
In what is being regarded as one of the weakest draft classes in quite some time, it is easy to see why Congo native Bosmack Biyombo is starting to soar up 2011 NBA Draft boards. At 6-9, 243 pounds, Biyombo is already built like a man despite being just 18 years old. When you consider the skills he already displays and how far along he is in his development for someone so young, it is easy to see why his potential is through the roof.
Possessing a freakish 7’7” wingspan, Biyombo’s biggest asset is his combination of length and strength which allows him to be a terror on the boards, explosive finisher at the rim, and intimidating defensive presence as a shot blocker. He is constantly working hard on both ends of the floor whether he is trying to establish post position on the block or flying over from the weak side as a help defender.
At the Nike Hoop Summit Game in Portland, Biyombo posted a triple-double with 12 points, 11 rebounds, and ten blocked shots in the World Team’s 92-80 loss to Team USA. He used his size and physicality to control the paint against a thin U.S. frontcourt featuring some of the top high school seniors in the country including Kentucky-bound Anthony Davis who is currently at the top of my 2012 NBA Mock Draft.
Offensively, Biyombo is still very raw with his all-around game. He did show flashes of a developing back to the basket game with a nice spin move on the block that resulted in an easy lay-up. Right now though, Biyombo gets most of his baskets off offensive rebounds or easy dunks. His jump shot is still a work in progress and he seems uncomfortable handling the ball on the perimeter.
Biyombo reminds me a lot of fellow Congolese big man and Oklahoma City Thunder power forward, Serge Ibaka. Ibaka was still a raw talent when he arrived to the NBA but found his niche as a rebounder, shot blocker, and energy guy while he continued to develop his offensive game. Biyombo brings the same elements to the floor but is more physical at his age than Ibaka. Like the Thunder big man, Biyombo should only get better with time and experience.
Biyombo’s NBA stock has sky-rocketed in the past couple of weeks faster than any other draft prospect I can remember in the past couple of years. For an 18 year-old who is still somewhat new to the game of basketball, his up-side is out of this world. Because of that, Biyombo will certainly be a first round pick and do not be shocked if he works his way into the lottery, possibly even the top ten before it is all said and done.
David Kay is a senior feature NBA Draft, NBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank. He also heads up the NBA and college basketball material at Walter Football.com and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities.
You can follow him on Twitter at DavidKay_TSB.