A late-bloomer after two successful seasons at Dayton, following his first two seasons at the University of Georgia, Toumani Camara quickly exploded in the A-10 for Dayton. A two-time All A-10 member, as well as an honoree for A-10 All-Defense, Camara impressed NBA teams at the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament enough to earn an NBA Draft Combine in the middle of May.
As a senior, Camara averaged 14 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 1.7 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.8 BPG, and 2.1 TOPG on splits of 55/36/67. Below is his full scouting report:
Name: Toumani Camara
Birth date: May 8, 2000
Wingspan/ standing reach: 7’0 ½ /8’11
Hand size: 10
Pre-Draft team: Dayton
Tools: Athleticism, frame, versatility, defensive upside, finishing
- Outstanding frame
- Has the physical tools to be a good defender
- Good recovery ability and uses his body well to cut off drives
- Excellent finisher at the rim
- Good rebounder
- Comfortable floater with both hands
- Passes well with both hands
- Intelligent cutter that times and angles cuts correctly and accurately
- Good athlete with half-court explosiveness
- Versatile on both ends
- Good motor
- Can be a step late defensively against drives, particularly against more athletic players
- Low free throw percentage; a bit streaky of a shooter (first half vs second half of the season splits)
- Negative assist:turnover ratio
- Must improve as an off the dribble shooter
- Lacks much creativity as a ball-handler
- Defensive consistency
- Jump shooting consistency
Defensively, Camara has every tool and ability a coach can ask for from a prospect: versatility, length, athleticism, intelligence with the fundamentals down, and a high motor. While he still needs to iron out some consistencies, the good significantly outweighs the bad defensively, and some of the bad may be attributed to the college spacing/pace. One area that has led to some inconsistency defensively with Camara is that he can react late to the first step of athletic players driving. However, if Camara lands at a spot with a good help-side rim protector behind him, he should be able to more easily adjust defensively. With long arms, good recovery ability and a high motor which will keep him in plays, Camara’s NBA value defensively should still be high, given that he can use his tools to thrive both on-ball and off-ball. If Camara turns his defensive consistency up a notch, he has the potential to be a top 3 defender on his team.
Offensively, Camara thrives as a finisher, and is likely to be mostly an off-ball threat in his first year. With a limited and basic handle, Camara struggles to break defenders down one to get to his spots. However, his athleticism can be overwhelming, especially out of the triple threat, which makes him a candidate to become a good overall spot-up player, both shooting the ball and as a catch & drive threat. When matched up against bigs at the Portsmouth Invitational, where he was one of the strongest standout players, he blew by the big men and used his mismatch athleticism to win easy points.
While Camara still has to prove his jump shot can be successful, there are enough successful indicators to suggest that his career-best 36% from 3 as a senior is translatable. However, this being the first year of his career to shoot over 34%, even if the year-by-year numbers are linear progressions, combined with a free throw percentage that has never eclipsed 67% are alarming numbers. Camara will have to prove lights-out shooting in pre-draft workouts and during the NBA Draft Combine scrimmages to win teams over in that department.
Overall, Toumani Camara is a great gamble as a versatile small forward, being able to truly play 2-4 in most lineups, making him a flexible option to play just about any lineup, potentially even small-ball 5 one day. With upside as a top defender on a team, potential to be an off-ball threat, and athleticism to go along with a strong feel for the game, Camara feels like a safe bet to contribute as a late second round draft pick. Almost every year since 2010 that the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament has been held (canceled in 2020 and 2021), a standout performer at the event has been drafted. Camara fits the bill as a modern wing to not only be this year’s drafted PIT alum, but also to stick in the NBA as a rotational wing.
Similar to: Keita Bates-Diop, Nic Batum, Al-Farouq Aminu
Projected draft range: 50-undrafted
Expected role: Versatile two-way wing
Unplayable if: Jump shot doesn’t translate.
Exceeds expectations if: Jump shooting comes around, defense takes a jump in consistency, and NBA spacing benefits his game offensively to find more rhythm as a creator.
Miscellaneous Synergy Stats:
Catch & shoot 3s: 28/76 (36.8%)
Jumpers off the dribble: 2/12 (16.7%)
Runner: 8/14 (57%)