Welcome back to Corner Stats! After only five games, Goga Bitadze is already becoming famous. And with full credit: he has arrived at the Buducnost during the roster revolution and is putting on quite good numbers that make you forget his very young age (19 years old). So let’s know the player with the help of some numbers. A note before starting: I will repeat it often throughout the article, but the five games played by the big man are a very small sample. The charts and the comparisons with the other players are more useful to understand the impact that has had in EuroLeague and to make a real comparison.
Goga Bitadze is a modern big man: he has a height of 211 cm and a huge wingspan, about 220 cm. This incredible wingspan allows him to be an excellent rim protector and a good defender on opponents’shot at the rim. He also showed a good inclination to the defensive rebound: box-outs, his endless arms and a good elevation already allow him to be a good rebounder.
Anyway, we can’t say that Bitadze is already an excellent defender: the big man has already the abilities to become that type of player but he must improve these characteristics along with the muscle definition. In addition at a first impression, it seems that he does only a normal show in pick and roll situation and then returns to his man. Due to his height, he cannot become a switcher, but he can and have to add to his “equipment” a hard show that, in some situations, can be useful for him. However, all these aspects can be found in the following chart:
Obviously, the very small sample creates a value of Block Percentage impossible to keep during the remaining season, but the data is still impressive: in the five matches played he showed that is difficult to shoot near him. There is another stat that confirms this impression: with Goga on the court, the opponents’2P% is 50%, while it is 60% with the big man on the bench. The 18% of defensive rebounds grabbed confirms what was said previously about his rebounding ability. The ON-OFF is positive also in this case: + 3% of defensive rebounds grabbed with Bitadze on the court.
On the offensive side, he is probably one step ahead than the defensive one: Goga is a great roller on the PNR situations and he is the perfect partner for modern point guards such as Norris Cole, his current teammate. In the five games played, he seems more confident when he receives the ball dynamically, while the post-up moves have been used not so much. However, he is not a one-dimension player because he can also shoot from 3-point range.
This shot chart is available on https://basketballguru.gr/stats.
As always, the sample is small and therefore the chart cannot be 100% reliable, but the shooting preferences are certainly remarkable. The majority of his shots are near the rim following the PNR or after grabbing an offensive rebound (even in this dynamic is showing a good attitude, 16.4% of OR%). In these conclusions is averaging an unreal 63%, while the few attempts from beyond the arc are converted with a 25%: he has to improve his 3P shot in order to become more dangerous.
Observing the ratings, we see that Bitadze is a solid player:
The chart shows the offensive and defensive ratings of EuroLeague’s big men. Always remembering that the sample is small, Goga’s numbers take him among great players, a manifestation of a great impact on the competition.
So, the Georgian big man has had a more than positive impact in EuroLeague; in these first five games there were for sure some factors that helped him to emerge: the opportunity to play 20/25 minutes per game without too much pressure, having at his side PNR players like Cole and a new coach, Repesa, who loves developing young players. The numbers averaging in these first five appearances are therefore partly “drugged” by these factors, but we can recognize for sure a great impact. I believe that during the remaining of the season his statistics will tend to drop down, also because players will start to know him: I very curious to see what he will do.
Goga Bitadze is, therefore, a player to follow with attention: a modern big man and hungry to show how strong he is.