Zaccharie Risacher started making the rounds some years ago as a young player for Asvel and a constant presence in big tournaments for the French national team. Standing 6’8, the young wing is a known name for scouts all around Europe, but a transfer to JL Bourg has put him in the podium in several NBA Draft big boards. A change that allowed him to play more consistent minutes in a role that suits him better and we’re starting to see that come to fruition.

At Bourg, Risacher plays more of a complimentary, off the ball role, something that suits him perfectly, as he’s not an on-ball creator. Instead, his decision making, quick reads and physical tools allow him to be efficient with a smaller number of touches, just finding ways to be effective. In an ever-evolving NBA, with teams scoring in bunches and consistently upping their tempo, his transition and catch and shoot attempts are almost equal, with the same level of efficiency. His 1.38 points per possession in transition would put him at the 90th percentile in the NBA for players with two or more possessions per game.

But we’re focusing on the other three main playtypes for Risacher and how he would fit into today’s half-court offenses. Doing the same exercise we just did with his transition numbers – and of course we should take these numbers with a grain of salt, mainly due to the difference in opposition – Risacher’s 1.38 points per possession on catch and shoot possessions would put him at the 95th percentile in the NBA for players with two or more attempts per game. In today’s NBA, having someone at hs height that can spread the floor and be ready to shoot at all times is such a big advantage. He is shooting more and with tremendous efficiency, upping his attempts by more than 1.5 per game and his efficiency by 0.3 points per possession. His 46.8% from 3 off the catch are impressive numbers.

He does a pretty good job of finding pockets of space to get the ball and go up. His quick trigger and high release point allow him to get his shot off with little space between him and the closest defender. Still, the more space he can create for himself, the better and his intriguing spatial awareness is key to get the best looks possible. As we can see in the video above, Risacher is a patient off-ball player who can read the defense and understands defensive rotations at a high level to help his team. Does a great job of moving a few inches to create a better passing angle and doesn’t stay in the same spot at all times, which would make the defense comfortable.

Risacher is smart enough to know how to use his gravity as a shooter to his advantage. His quick shot fake usually gets his defender out of the way and allows him to gain space by having patience and letting defenders go by. He’s also good at selling a quick drive before attacking the other way, creating space with his long legs and being able to go up and stay balanced.

Impressive attacking closeouts, Risacher is not there yet as a finisher – mainly due to his lack of upper body strength – but can get past defenders closing out to him in different manners. He can get defenders to bite on the possibility of him going up or attacking quickly off the catch, but he can go to fast crossovers that leave defenders behind, betrayed by their own momentum. With an unusual balance after his first step and a low dribble, Risacher can get past the closeout defender by attacking in the opposite direction or pulling the dribble back before attacking quickly off of that. Again, his 0.80 points per possession in catch and drives don’t do his ability to attack closeouts justice.

He also shows patience and quick processing speed when the defense doesn’t go for his fakes. As the defender gets in front of him after a drive, Risacher has no need to panic. Although slight in his build, he can put his shoulder down to protect the ball and gain his position, before stepping back for the shot. With his length, not many defenders can create problems to his shot, especially on step backs, so it is huge for him to be able to win that space. Plus, his ability to stay on his feet and go up with a hand on his face makes it even tougher for defenses to stop him.

Improving as a movement shooter, that should be Risacher’s next step. Coming off screens, he’s usually already set to go up with his feet in place. Doesn’t take much time to load, so that ability to catch ready to shoot buys him precious time as a shooter. He’s also pretty intelligent at recognizing where the defense is and using that to his advantage. They get caught on the screen and he will win space the other way. The defense decides to follow him and he’ll be ready to attack off the curl, as we can see below.

Long strides, quick decisions. With a defender on his back, following him off screens, Risacher is able to get a good position off the curl, by using his inside hand on the first dribble, which leaves his man behind. From there, he already has the advantage and will now play off the decisions of the help defense. Continue his rim attack, stop for a mid-range pull-up or find a teammate. Risacher will usually go for the shot, but will always take a moment to read the defense and decide. All of this done on the move, off a curl that forces him to be quick with his processing.

With 11.4 points per game, Risacher’s ability to score on a low amount of touches make him the perfect complimentary piece for teams with heavier usage guards and even bigs. He fits the modern NBA offensive style by being ready and efficient in the actions he’s good at. He won’t dazzle you with quick changes of direction and constant creation on the ball, but will give your offense a steady hand by moving well without the ball and catch it with a plan and a decisiveness he didn’t really have in years past. Zaccharie Risacher should be a name to follow as we get closer to the NBA draft as a high pick.