How Paolo Banchero stacks up against these young star players

At 21 years old, Paolo Banchero has solidified himself as one of the top young players in the NBA and the franchise cornerstone in Orlando. Here is where a recent list ranked him among top players under 25 and how he stacks up against them.
Toronto Raptors v Orlando Magic
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How Paolo Banchero stacks up against HoopsHype's Top 25 Under 25

Alperen Sengun (21), Houston Rockets

Coming in just behind Paolo Banchero on the HoopsHype list, Alperen Sengun is developing himself into one of the best big men in basketball.

In his third season (second as a full-time starter), he has blossomed into a Nikola Jokic-type playmaker. Only he and Luka Doncic have averaged 21/9/5 at 21 years or younger in NBA history -- a great sign for one of the league's emerging bigs.

What sticks out the most is how methodical Sengun is as an offensive player.

In a league full of Jaylen Brown/Ja Morant speedsters, Giannis Antetokounmpo/Zion Williamson bully ballers, and Stephen Curry/Klay Thompson/Damian Lillard three-point snipers, Alperen Sengun is none of that. He operates at his own pace.

It is a "get him the ball and let him operate" type of offense but it is not anywhere closer to isolation basketball. He is looking not for his best shot, but the best shot overall.

Sengun is a crafty 15 foot and in scorer with a variety of options that keep his defender on his toes: half-spin fades, one-dribble push shots, subtle jockeying for position that never looks like it will go anywhere until there is a foot of space between him and his defender and his shot rips the cords.

As a defender, it is nothing to be desired. He lacks the mobility to be even a half-threat on pick-and-roll switches. On the inside, he is not the most vertical and cannot, at this point, be a true interior stopper.

Alperen Sengun

Paolo Banchero

PPG (2023-24)

















2022 ROTY

The decision to have Paolo Banchero and Alperen Sengun back-to-back on the list speaks to his long-term potential. His development was a longer process than Banchero's, but it's understandable for someone who came into the league at 18.

Like with Williamson in the previous slide, it is an apple and oranges comparison here.

The main edge to Banchero in this comparison is that, while Sengun has developed into one of the best young bigs in the game, is his defense a big enough issue to hinder his development into a star in this league?

Not to say he cannot. There is a growing belief he has franchise cornerstone potential. He is one of the top three to five passing bigs in the league and a top post scorer already.

The defensive end is a pretty glaring weakness, however. That is going to be the big question for him to determine where he falls amongst other younger players over the next few years.