|Team: NON-NBA College Team: Canton|
H: 6' 3"|
W: 185 lbs
(31 Years Old)
Current: PG/SG |
High School: Walt Whitman
Hometown: Huntington Station, NY
Although he’s still very much flying under the radar as far as the national media goes, the #1 scorer in the country at the moment is none other than Hofstra guard Antoine Agudio. That fact alone was enough to bait us into taking a closer look, particularly when combined with the outstanding percentages he’s shooting so far from the field.
Agudio spent much of the summer working with New York City based trainers Jay Hernandez and Ross Burns, and the early results we’re noticing comparing his film from last year with this season’s has been fairly substantial. Agudio looks like a more fluid and confident player, stronger, and with some better shot-creating moves in his arsenal. Whereas last year he was asked to share ball-handling duties with one point guard (Carlos Rivera) and another dominant high scoring combo guard (Loren Stokes), this season Agudio is basically by himself when it comes to providing leadership and go-to scoring ability for a very young Hofstra squad.
Built very well for a combo guard, Agudio has decent size at 6-3, a nice frame, and a very good wingspan. He’s not a freakish athlete by any means, but he does move well around the court, with a certain fluidity and elegance to his game not all that unlike Toronto swingman Anthony Parker, albeit a couple of inches shorter.
As you can guess by his astronomical percentages, Agudio is a lights out shooter through and through. He’s hitting 48% of his 3-pointers on the season so far, taking over 8 and a half attempts per game from beyond the arc—only a handful of which have come on clean looks. He has picture perfect shooting mechanics, able to set his feet in an instant with outstanding balance and get his shot off in the blink of an eye thanks to his quick release. He can catch and shoot coming off screens, but is particularly adept creating separation and pulling up off the dribble, either from mid-range or beyond the arc—moving left or right or fading away with a hand in his face. Agudio has hit over 300 3-pointers in his career so far, and has never shot less than 42% from that range in any given season. Guys like Daniel Gibson and Damon Jones come to mind when watching him play, and it’s not hard to think that he’s going to be given some very serious looks in private workouts this June based off his outstanding perimeter shooting skills alone.
Thankfully for him and his team, though, Agudio is more than just an excellent shooter. He’s also a pretty good ball-handler, nothing outstanding (particularly with his left hand), but certainly more than good enough to keep defenses honest. Only 45% of his points at the moment come from behind the arc (very similar to last year), so it’s clear that he can create offense for himself in other ways besides just with his shooting stroke. Agudio has good body control and a very aggressive mentality, allowing him to get inside the paint from time to time with nice long strides and some slight hesitation moves, and either draw contact or finish craftily with a floater or short pull-up jumper. He’s not the greatest finisher in the world from what we can tell (his left hand needs a lot of work here), but he’s tough enough to get to the free throw line nearly 7 times per game this season (4.8 per game last year).
Standing 6-3, most NBA teams are going to want to see Agudio show more point guard skills than he’s probably been able to display at Hofstra so far. He plays mostly off the ball, but will bring the ball up the floor from time to time and get his (very uptempo) team into their offense. For being such a prolific scorer, some might expect Agudio to be a bit on selfish side as many mid-major combo guards are. The fact of the matter is that he’s anything but that, appearing to be nothing short of an outstanding teammate, and a real facilitator when presented with opportunities to create for others. He clearly has a very high basketball IQ, and looks committed to making good decisions and making big plays for his team, either himself or by setting up a teammate. The problem is that he doesn’t have much talent around him (to put things lightly), so in order for his team to have any real chance at winning, he needs to shoot the ball 20 times or more every game, and even that sometimes isn’t enough. Something that was very telling in the Charlotte game from this past weekend that we analyzed was the fact that during the last 5 minutes of the game, it was Agudio the one that played the point for his team almost exclusively, acting as the team’s leader and floor general throughout.
Part of the reason for that is the fact that most opposing teams’ number one gameplan to beat Hofstra is to keep the ball out of Agudio’s hands. We saw plenty of Box and Ones, traps off pick and rolls, shameless double-teams, and plenty of face-guarding by various opponents trying to slow down Agudio. What’s sad is that that often works, as his very young teammates often struggle to find a way to take advantage and put the ball in the basket themselves. Agudio has to work incredibly hard to get every shot he ends up taking, at times looking pretty exhausted out there on the floor. That’s what makes his outstanding percentages this season all the more impressive, as you can only imagine how well he’d be shooting if he actually got some more clean looks from time to time.
Defensively, Agudio looked very solid in the minutes we evaluated him. He seems committed to stopping his man and playing good team defense, also acting as a bit of a floor general on this end of the floor, particularly when his team is playing zone. He might not have the greatest lateral quickness, nor does he look like a very dangerous threat playing the passing lanes, but the focus and fundamentals are clearly there, and at this level that’s usually enough to get the job done. He also seems to do a good job hitting the glass.
So where does that leave him as far as this year’s draft is concerned? That’s a good question. If Agudio can find a way to keep himself at the top of the scoring ranks and still manage to shoot a high percentage from the field, he’s going to be in very good shape. Either way, he’ll surely be invited to show his stuff at Portsmouth, where he will be able to show that he can hold his own with high-major athletes and then move onto the pre-draft camp, which will be a big test for him. Agudio appears to be one of the best shooters the college game has to offer, and that alone will get him plenty of looks. Whether that translates into an NBA roster spot is still very much up in the air, but he should get his fair chance to show that he belongs.
Agudio will be entering his senior year at Hofstra next season, where he’s been a three-year starter, averaging upwards of 35 minutes each season, topping out at 38 minutes per game last year. Agudio’s consistently improved his scoring production and efficiency each season, to the point where he averaged 19.9 points on .458 shooting. He’s never played the pure point guard role at Hofstra, but this season, seniors Carlos Rivera and Loren Stokes will not be returning, taking a full 7 assists per game out of the lineup, leaving a lot of slack for Agudio to potentially pick up, even though he’s never averaged more than 2.7 assists per game in a season. Agudio will have a chance to show he can be more of a true point guard this season, though he wasn’t able to display any point guard skills in this setting, as everything was individual-oriented.
Agudio really lit things up in the shooting drills from 15 feet and college three-point range, hitting 21-25 from 15 feet and 18-25 from behind the college three-point line. He has excellent elevation on his jump shot and very good shooting mechanics, with a high, consistent release point that doesn’t change as he moves farther away from the basket. He shot a strong .430 from college range this past season, but he still apparently has to work on developing his NBA range. While he did excellent from inside NBA range in the shooting drills here, he struggled to convert from behind the NBA line, hitting just 9-23, even though his mechanics remained solid. It could’ve just been an off-day for Agudio, but even if not, he has plenty of time to add a few more feet to his range, something he shouldn’t have much trouble doing in time.
On the dribble-drive drills, Agudio was on-and-off, looking really comfortable and strong with some moves, while not looking comfortable on others, looking very awkward going through the motions and not really selling the move well at all. It should be noted that he definitely has plenty of good moves to create his own shot, as evidenced by his strong scoring production in his three years at Hofstra, and a player doesn’t necessarily have to be great at every move in the book. Agudio looked good going off one or two dribbles with either hand, and looked good pulling up into his shot from either hand, possessing good footwork and fluidity there. Agudio didn’t do a very good job selling his crossover moves and ball-fakes, looking rigid with his execution and not looking as if he’d get many players to bite on them. He got a bit more comfortable as the workout went on and he got some repetition in on all the moves, looking especially good when Hernandez allowed the players to free-lance their attacks from the wing, where he mixed in crossovers and spin moves well, finishing on floaters and pull-up shots.
With the new trend towards combo-guards in the NBA, Agudio should have a chance to catch on somewhere in the future, though he’d do himself well to work on becoming more of a point guard, something he should have the opportunity to do at Hofstra next season. He’s a player we will likely be seeing at one or both of the pre-draft camps next year, and if he doesn’t make it in the NBA, should have a very productive career as a scoring guard in Europe, where his game should fit in very well.