Who can defend LeBron James, Luka Doncic, Jimmy Butler, Giannis Antetokounmpo and win those possessions? Who can play at-the-level or in drop, and stop the Trae Young pick n' roll attack? Who can make bigs pay for floating out to the perimeter? Who can completely redefine their game in half a season? Precious Achiuwa can. How will he ascend this year?
“Every part of my game, in my opinion, has been getting better,” Achiuwa said. “That was a big emphasis of mine and still is, just trying to get better all around when it comes to my game."
Early on he tanked his team's offense, and desperately tried to get it back on the other end. In the midst of a Raptors team that was playing its most aggressive scheme yet, most people had a hard time figuring out who was doing what correctly on defense. However, they knew where to point on the other side of the floor. So, the quick glance would portray Achiuwa as a big who couldn't roll, shoot, finish at the rim, or catch. Prior to the All-Star break his true shooting was sitting at 45-percent, when league average (bigs are usually above it) sits around 55-percent.
Achiuwa's end goal for his development: "Make every shot that I take."
There was very little support for the aspects of his game that we all now collectively marvel at. The scores of people that begged him not to dribble, gather around the television and let their eyes get as big as dinner plates while he accomplishes some fantastical feat of live-dribble athleticism. Among analysts and scouts, some whisper: "He's going to be a star."