After a freshman season where he showed plenty of flashes, Greivis Vasquez
has come back extremely strong as a sophomore, posting All-ACC type numbers for Maryland. Vasquezs production is up across the board, and hes showing off his outstanding talent night in and night out, leading the show for his squad. He currently leads the team in points, assists, turnovers, steals, and is third in rebounds from the point guard position.
The multi-talented guards skills have to begin with his point guard abilities, where he does things most players simply are not capable of doing. Given great freedom in Marylands offense this season, Vasquez has dished out assists in every which way, pushing the ball in transition, feeding the post, running the pick and roll, hitting cutters to the basket, and finding open shots for his teammates. He currently ranks 9th amongst all players in our database in assists per-40 minutes pace-adjusted. The most impressive aspect of his passing, though, is his ability to make passes off the dribble, always keeping his head up and showing a pension for no-look, one-handed passes through the seams of the defense. He makes passes in this vein in transition and the half-court, showing great accuracy and speed on his passes, considering hes throwing them with one hand while on the move. Vasquez also excels feeding the post, where he shows a good understanding of angles and recognizes when to make a bounce pass and when to make a straight-line pass, getting the ball to his teammates in strong position.
For all of Vasquezs ability in the passing game and the running of his teams offense, moving the ball and creating open shots all over the court, there is somewhat of a downside to this aspect of his game, as evidenced by his 4.4 turnovers per game (8th in our database
). Vasquez is prone to trying to do too much by forcing some passes, and also makes some lazy passes at times. Also, while he shows very good control of the basketball moving up and down the court, he can leave it unprotected at times, leading to turnovers.
Vasquezs questionable decision-making extends to his scoring game as well, where his shot selection leaves something to be desired. He is prone to rushing some pull-up jumpers and taking shots from NBA range frequently, which hurts his accuracy. He also seems to misjudge his momentum on off-the-dribble shots at times, leading to bad misses. That said, his 33% three-point percentage is not indicative of his true shooting ability, as hes a much better shooter when he isnt rushing and has time to get his feet set. He actually has a very smooth shot with strong mechanics, and is capable of pulling up in space, but needs to cut down on some of the forced attempts, whether theyre contested, rushed, from NBA range, or all three.
Vasquez excels in the dribble-drive game, where even though he doesnt have an explosive first step, he gets into the lane and finishes frequently. He uses changes of speed, changes of direction, and high screens well, frequently penetrating with the ball going in either direction, though he strongly prefers his right. He doesnt have much explosiveness around the basket, and with his slight frame, doesnt take contact especially well, but that doesnt stop him from consistently finishing, as he has an excellent right-handed floater, which he uses frequently. At 65, hes able to convert with this consistently even if his defender is still in front of him. Vasquez also shows good touch off the glass, and will finish with his left and right hand at the rim, using some unorthodox scoop shots and high lay-ups off the glass to score. Vasquez gets to the glass using off-ball cuts as well, catching and finishing after making good reads on open lanes in the defense.
On the defensive end, Vasquez shows excellent anticipation in the passing lanes, where he uses his length well to pick off passes, though he struggles at times as a man-to-man defender. Vasquezs lateral quickness is not that great, and his high center of gravity hurts him defending smaller, quicker point guards. He compensates for this somewhat by using his length and doing a good job sticking with his man off the ball, fighting well through off-ball screens. He struggles with on-ball screens, though, often going under them rather than fighting through them, leading to some open shots for his man. Vasquez does use his size and length well on the boards, though, pulling in 5.6 rebounds per game, most of them on the defensive end.
Vasquez is likely to test the draft waters this year from what were told, given his strong performance this season, and because big man teammates James Gist
and Bambale Osby will be graduating, without much coming into replace them. While Vasquez is an extremely talented player, there are some questions about how his game will translate to the next level, and reasons for him to strongly consider coming back to school next year. Vasquezs ability to defend point guards at the next level is a concern, and his decision-making has a lot of room for improvement, something that will best come with playing time and coaching. Its uncertain whether he could secure minutes in the NBA at this stage of his development, even with his outstanding talent. Despite his excellent production this season, he still has a lot of room for improvement as a player, as there are many things hes capable of doing much more efficiently. Continuing to develop his game and honing in all his talent may be crucial to his long-term success, and entering the draft too early may prevent him from doing that.