Beijing China -- Our Chinese correspondent Lukas Peng informed us today that he may have unearthed the next John Bryant. His name is Wang Zhelin and his ability to lull opponents to sleep can only be compared to that of the former Santa Clara standout.
While scouts have been scouring the US and Europe for the past 5 years, no one realized that China would be the place to produce the next transcendent athlete in the mold of the great Bryant.
Zhelin is averaging 20.3 ppg and 12.9 rebounds, while shooting 53.3% from the floor and 62.2% from the line in 32 games.
The young center first displayed his significant talents in helping the World Team beat the US in last year's Hoop Summit. Wang Zhelin went for 19 points and 8 boards, while shooting 8-11 from the floor in that game.
Whether or not Wang can live up to these lofty projections remains to be seen, but one thing is clear, a Zhelin vs Bryant match up, whether it take place in the NBA, International ball, or in the octagon could turn out to be the most viewed sporting event in the history of modern civilization.
Here's a link to youtube for "Wang Zhelin highlight" page.
I watched a few highlights and he has a wonderful box out. He watches the ball go up, finds his man and clears him. Fundamental post moves and footwork. He looks solid and strong. He moves well for a guy his size.
I just hope he can stay healthy once he gets to the NBA and lands in the right situation. Yi Jianlian had the potential to be a building block for a team for years to come, but an array of nagging injuries which limited his playing time in his first few years held him back from establishing himself with his teams and ultimately he got shipped off one too many times to cement himself by the time he was healthy.
I've always thought it was a shame that Yi couldn't carry his Chinese national team form over to the NBA - he's definitely skilled enough to be a rotation player at least - but timing and fragility destroyed whatever value he had.
little offtopic but talking about Nike hoop summit game and about international prospects, where has all the Ilimane Diop hypes gone?
...that brings me back a few years. I can't believe nobody has asked yet who the Hell John Bryant is. But, maybe his legend continues to grow.
John Bryant should be in the NBA. He is exhibit A that GMs don't draft for rebounding. And then they wonder why they have to cycle through Rasheed Wallace and Kenyon Martin to find a big man who can play.
John Bryant is playing pretty well in Eurocup and Bundesliga this year for anyone that is interested.
Actually you should be a little stronger. He is dominating this year (great rebounding, of course, plus efficient scoring even out to 3 on a fairly large number of shots per game) and now has basically been dominant for a few years. NBA teams regularly offer big men $10 million per year contracts who aren't as good as John Bryant.
Longer video of Wang Zhelin:
Some killer tunes on there too! ;)