This year I got to watch alot of SMU play and Semi was one of my favorite players to watch throughout the season. Ojeleye is an explosive athlete with some serious offensive talent. I had him pegged as a top 25 prospect and I was shocked to see him fall all the way to pick 37. Here I'm going to give a scouting report on Ojeleye's game and what we can expect out of him next year in the NBA.
6'7" 241 Wing Span 6' 10"
- Defensive Matchup in NBA
- Ball Handling/ Left Hand
- Offensive Rebounding
- Finishing in traffic
Shooting: Ojeleye has proved that he can be an elite knockdown shooter in college and this should transfer to the NBA. This season he knocked down 42.4% of his threes and repeatedly came up big for SMU. In the clip below you can see Ojeleye has the ability to hit tightly contested shots. The Celtics will most likely lose Kelly Olynyk and Jonas Jerebko this off season so the Celtics can use another knock down shooter.
Rebounding: One of the major concerns with Ojeleye is that he is slightly undersized to play power foward in the NBA and that he only averaged 6.8 rebounds this season with over 33% of those rebounds coming on the offensive end. I think that in the NBA, Semi will be a capable rebounder on the defensive end and an elite offensive rebounder. Throughout the season Ojeleye really showed a knack for grabbing offensive boards. Take a look at this ridiculous put back vs USC.
Scouts: Major Concerns:
- Defensive instincts
- Playing in a Weak division/ Getting Upset in NCAA tourney
Just taking a look at the basic numbers for Ojeleye would definitely make you think that he isn't very active on the defensive end, as he averaged under .5 steals and rebounds per game. However, taking a look at his advanced metrics tell a little bit of a different story. Ojeleye's 98 rating on defense is one of the best out of any of this years draft prospects. In fact his defensive rating is only 1.2 points higher than touted defensive prospect De'Aaron Fox and only .9 points higher than Jaylen Brown. While Ojeleye may not rack up the steals and blocks he does an excellent job of keeping players in front of him and contesting shots. At the combine Ojeleye posted the third fastest lane agility time showing that he will be able to stay in front of SF's at the next level.
The level of competition in the American Conference is undoubtedly weaker than the competition he faced while at Duke and Ojeleye absolutely dominated it posting a 132 offensive rating. This was a higher rating than both Fultz and Ball's achieved this season. SMU may have been bounced early from the NCAA tourney but that isn't Ojeleye's fault as he dropped 24 points and picked up 10 rebounds.
Final Verdict: The first big test for Semi is going to be the summer league and seeing how he competes against a higher level of competition. I expect him to step up his game but it will be important for him to consistently knock down 3's and prove to everyone he will be at least an average defender in the league. If he is able to do those 2 things I think that he finds himself on the roster, however I would expect for him to get limited minutes this season as Crowder, Brown, and Tatum all rank ahead of him on the depth chart.