Interesting prospect over in Europe. Mouhammadou Jaiteh or better known as “Mam” is a raw but very talented 18 year old prospect. If you are not familiar with the big man’s name or history, get in line. He has the size and the upside to be a PF/C in the NBA. Although, the question always comes down to the burning desire inside for these young talented prospects. He is a legit 6’11″ 250 pound man child. He has a soft touch around the basket and doesn’t mind mixing it up in the paint. I see him in the mold of a DeMarcus Cousins with his size and width, minus the jumper at this point in time. With maturity, tons of hard work and experience on the NBA level, “Mam” could be a low post presence for years to come.
Strengths: Young player with a sculpted frame, great size and length … Shows nice touch when close to the basket … Lots of willingness to bang down low and an awareness of his role … Very broad shoulders which help him gain space in the post … High release on his shot and seems to know to keep the ball high … Solid offensive rebounder with skill at boxing out … Will hustle for loose balls … 7-4 wingspan is put to good use as a disruption in defending the post … Strength to be a good rebounder at either end of the court … Not a complete liability at the foul stripe during his play in the French Pro B level, shooting 81-118 (68.6%)
Weaknesses: Lacks lateral quickness and very little lift … Below the rim player will have difficulty defending quicker , more athletic big men … Has yet to play major minutes of higher level pro basketball, a definite long term project … Lacks much of a post arsenal beyond putbacks and garbage baskets … Shooting mechanics make it difficult to see him stretching the floor or providing much offense outside of the paint … Very likely to have foul trouble playing at a higher level … Hands are not great, can bobble passes which limits him as an offensive option … Will need work on conditioning … Plays hard in spurts, though can lose his focus and underwhelm with energy … Still learning where to be on the floor and needs development on court IQ
When I am looking at these prospects I am not just looking for defense. It was obvious in the playoffs that the Knicks lacked inside presence on the offensive end of the court. With the limited action from Amar’e and no other offensive PF’s on the roster with skills in the paint, would it be possible that the Knicks take a chance on a project with upside like Jaiteh? Whoever the Knicks do select will not get much playing time because of Woodson’s point of view on playing rookies, therefore adding a player who can learn the system and gain experience over time could be the way to go for New York. The benefits of this pick could be tenfold for years to come.