An interesting name that had popped up for the St. John's recruiting efforts in 2015 is Italian guard Federico Mussini. Thought to be a lean to stay in Europe and get paid for his efforts, Mussini is a very good pro prospect who is deciding between developing his game stateside and playing professionally.
And according to the NY Post's Zach Braziller, Mussini's name is one to keep an eye on - meaning that Steve Lavin is working on bringing the guard stateside to play at St. John's.
The Red Storm, as mentioned earlier, must replace their entire backcourt next season, with D`Angelo Harrison, Phil Greene IV, Sir`Dominic Pointer and Jamal Branch seniors and sophomore Rysheed Jordan indicating he wants to make a leap from the college level into the pro ranks. So looking everywhere for a scoring guard who can carry a team makes absolute sense.
Who is Federico Mussini?
Federico Mussini is said to be around 6'2" and has talked about coming to the United States - either for prep school or college. He's not physically imposing - ok, reports seem to use the word "frail" or indicate that he's not that athletic - but that's in comparison to NBA players.
Mussini, speaking of frail, compares himself with the slim Stephen Curry, NBA star with Golden State who also looked too slight to be a player in the United States' highest league.
Mussini is known to have an offer from Gonzaga out west, and interest from Virginia and Davidson. He has been known about in the US after a strong game in the Jordan Brand Classic in 2012, where he scored 21 points per game with four rebounds, four assists and two steals, going most of his damage inside the arc.
But again, is he interested in going pro or does he want to play in the United States?
Does he want exposure and training and minutes while keeping his professional options open, or does he want money and higher-level training while closing the book on his college options?
Scouting Reports/ Recent Games
The Italian guard is a consistent scorer on the youth levels, named to the all-tournament team of the MVP of this summer's FIBA Under-18 championships in level A, the top level (by comparison, new St. John's recruit Amar Alibegovic played in level B).
Italy relied on Federico Mussini for buckets, using his quick handle and outside stroke - and he delivered.
Stroking it in nine contests during the FIBA U-18 tourney, Mussini scored 22.6 points per game, shot 43% on three-pointers - taking 43% of his shots from deep - and shot 49% inside the arc. He also shot 85% from the free throw line and handed out two assists per game. He had a high of six assists in his final game of the tournament, a three-point loss against basketball power Spain.
In the Albert Schweitzer youth team tournament in May, he shot 53% from beyond the arc in scoring 20 points per game, and handed out three assists per contest.
Profiles of Mussini
Snippet from NBA Draft.net profile:
You can call him the Steph Curry of the Boot. Has close to zero NBA chances, but was one the most fun and clutch players of the tournament. Mussini made all the defenders trying to stop him crazy. His quickness is outstanding and he goes by people like a knife through butter. A great shooter from 3 pt and pull up jumper. Doesn't have a great body, very skinny, but he is strong and knows how to handle contact, which is how he scores so much in the paint. Despite that if he wants to play at higher level and be the successor to GianMarco Pozzecco, he needs to put some muscles eventually. His short size is partially overcome by his long arms that make him like a 6'3'' PG.
Snippet from a European Prospects review of Mussini's play in May's Albert Schweitzer tournament:
His shot execution is really fast with a great quick release both out of the dribble and in catch and shoot situations. Because of his limited height, he needs to have a quick execution as he does not jump much when taking his shot.
Next to his shot, Mussini showed great ball handling skills keeping the ball really low when dribbling it which reduces the number of turnovers.
Mussini on All-Tournament Team, 2014 U18 European Championships
Mussini is #4 in white, the first unveiled.
Mussini's explosive scoring vs Greece
The loss vs Greece in the Quarterfinals where Mussini scored 20 of his 23 in the second half.