Yuta Jazz Recruiting Prospects from EuropeFirst FA contract this season
Utah Jazz recruited Simone Pontechio (26, Italy).
On the morning of the 17th , ESPN reporter Adrian Woznarowski reported, “Yuta has agreed to a two-year, 6.25 million dollar contract with Vasconia’s Italian forward Pontequio of Spain’s ACB League.”
“Pontekio is considered the best international small forward prospect,” Woznarowski said, welcoming him to the NBA.
Pontecchio was born with a healthy body of 6ft 8in (203cm) and 209lbs (93kg). He is expected to play shooting guard, small forward and power forward positions in the NBA.
Pontecchio averaged 11.9 points, 3.9 rebounds, and 1.7 assists in his team last season. Above all, his success rate of three-point shots reaches 41% in the past two seasons.
Thanks to his performance, Pontecchio was evaluated by NBA experts as excellent in scoring ability. Pontecchio is very active in defense, and he competes with shooting ability and versatility in offense.
However, Pontechio has difficulty in post-play because he lacks power. He also has a disadvantage that he is not used to catching rebounds.
Pontechio previously challenged to enter the NBA. He was named the best player in the Italian league under the age of 22 in 2015, and attended a draft workout with the Boston Celtics.
Pontecchio entered the draft period with Boston, but he withdrew his NBA draft declaration and returned to Europe.
NBA has since drawn interest in Pontechio, but has again paid attention to his performance at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics held last year. Pontecchio advanced Italy to the quarterfinals at the Olympics. In particular, he impressed NBA scouts by scoring 20 points, 4 rebounds, and 3 steals against his rival Germany.
Meanwhile, Utah is considering the upcoming season as a season for team reconstruction. Rudy Gobert, a key Utah player, was sent to the Minnesota Timberwolves, and Donovan Mitchell is also expected to leave the team.
Pontechio, once called the best prospect in Europe, is expected to move forward to see if he can survive on the NBA stage.