Al-Farouq Aminu (Wake Forest)
6'9, 220 lbs., PF/SF
A gifted athlete who's raw, but versatile, Aminu should have a long successful NBA career. He came into Wake Forest as one of the most heralded freshman and showed flashes of brilliance throughout school. While versatile Aminu will make his living as an elite defender.
Aminu's offensive game lacks refinement. He gets most of his points as a junk yard dog through dunks, transition, offensive rebounds, and hustle plays. With added bulk, Aminu would fit best at the four where he could take players off the dribble at ease, something he'd struggle with at SF.
Aminu struggles with his shot. While showing a solid mid-range game this year, he still lacks a consistent shot outside of the paint. Without a consistent shot and good, but not great handles, it is hard to envision him as a small forward.
Defensively, Aminu can get after it as a small forward or power forward. He has an extremely long wing-span to get deflections and block shots. With his leaping ability and solid defensive fundamentals, he grabbed nearly 11 rebounds at the college level and that should continue in the pros.
With great athletic ability and great lateral quickness, Aminu should defend the pick and roll well, hedging the ball handler or even defending him on switches. In the post, while relatively thin, he has the hustle, desire, and wiry strength to guard most post-up power forwards.
How does his game translate to the NBA?
Aminu should make an impact defensively immediately. His ceiling depends on his offensive improvement. Currently, his game to me is reminiscent of Gerald Wallace, but being a couple of inches taller. An added jumper is the difference between being a solid player and a good player.
He is projected to go early to mid lottery and should be a fixture in the NBA if utilized as a power forward. However, it might take a couple of years for Aminu to add strength and adjust to the higher level of competition, but the tools are there. One positive is that he seems to be a hard worker and great teammate, which makes me think he will max out his talent to the best of his ability.