Texas A&M-Commerce will be signing Adonis Holiman, the younger brother of UTSA guard Adante Holiman this morning. Holiman is young for his class and has a great feel for the game, given that he is young for his class (will be 18 when first enrolling at Texas A&M-Commerce). He also is a high-motor defender that will do the dirty work by using his low center of gravity to his advantage. Here’s a breakdown on each area of his game:
- Despite his size, Holiman does a good job of seeing through and around defenses. He is clearly a natural point guard, and uses a low center of gravity to keep a low dribble, making it hard for him to get stripped.
- Not sure if it’s because of outdated film or not, but his added strength since this film 2 years ago will do wonders. Bumps forced several turnovers in Under Armour clips, but this should be an easily improved area for him. With a good feel for the game, he generally is intelligent in finding teammates and makes his teammates better.
- I like that he’s confident attacking with his left hand. Finishing over and through traffic in the halfcourt will go a long way. It seemed like in film from 2021, defenders saw him be right handed as a shooter early in games and gave him the lane driving left, which often made it easy to punish defenses.
- I’d like to see him add some fakes (he may have this but again, outdated film potentially) to beat weak-side and chasing defenders. In transition I saw him get blocked by bigs that came down the court with a full head of steam. Using a ball fake when it’s 1-on-1 with the lone defender as a trailer is a perfect time to utilize a pump fake to get the defender in the air.
- I noticed he goes around defenders more than at them. To survive as an undersized guard in college, he’ll need to be able to win at the rim by going into rim protectors and finishing through them. Getting this down with both hands both feels attainable, and also would be huge to make a name for himself, and feels possible in the Southland Conference.
- However, this was all before his injury and before he added strength, maturing his body. If the physicals can help him at the rim, he could turn into a good finisher at the rim relative to his size. He has good touch on layups, but will not finish above the rim.
- I didn’t see much off-screen action for him, but mastering the decision-making behind screens off the catch is an extremely underrated trait I’ve seen for college guards. When to attack the rim, when to pause, and when to shoot; making the right decision consistently in this situation would make him a coveted guard. Given his strong feel for the game that has been a constant praise around his game, I trust that his off-screen decision making has developed just as much as his physicals have.
- He has very clearly deep range on his jumper. Utilizing that to space the floor out can help him both as a scorer and playmaker, being able to manipulate defenders further from the basket.
- Not sure what his off the dribble game looks like now, but would love to see him add a go-to move off the dribble. A signature stepback is probably the easiest to master, but maybe watching some of the top ball-handlers in the NBA can give him some pointers of some moves he feels comfortable going with. The shooting touch should make this an easy task.
- Would like to see him keep moving off-ball and commit to being a full-time mover to find the hole of the defense. Too often I saw him standing in a spot that eventually clogged the ball-handler. A good alternative would be to find the holes off-ball (down the baseline corner-to-corner, or using head fakes and cutting under a screen).
- Shooting touch is clear. Gets a deep follow through and with newfound strength I imagine his jumper has become more balanced from top to bottom, which will go a long way in using his undersized frame to his advantage to beat out-of-position defenders as a shooter.
Overall, an undersized guard that knows how to use his physical shortcomings to his advantage on both ends of the floor with strong intangibles is a valuable piece in a low-major/mid-major conference. Height is a little bit easier to be creative with, which could ultimately give Adonis Holiman the option down the road to grow his legacy at Texas A&M-Commerce or transfer up to a higher ranking conference.