OUTGOING National University athletic director Junel Baculi likened Mark Dyke to former PBA star Nelson Asaytono, saying he believes the former Bullpup could become a force to be reckoned with in the UAAP when he plays for La Salle in college.
“Although he is not that big in his position, I can remember him kay Nelson Asaytono,” said Baculi, a former coach in the PBA and in the amateur ranks.
“May konting similarity ng strength and play na na-develop na lang ni Nelson through the years sa PBA. I think he will be a potential really in the future.”
The 6-foot-2 forward from Mexico, Pampanga averaged double-doubles of 13.4 points and 14.5 rebounds in Season 77 where the Bullpups finished second to Ateneo in the UAAP juniors division.
Dyke has been part of the UAAP Mythical Five for two seasons in a row and is set to join other high school prospects Jollo Go, Andrei Caracut, Enzo Navarro, and JBoy Gob who have committed to La Salle.
Basketball analyst Andy Jao, commissioner of the UAAP Season 77 basketball tournament, viewed Dyke differently, pointing out that the former NU star still has to develop an outside game than can compare to Asaytono's.
“If you are talking about Nelson Asaytono as a power forward with his back to the basket, okay ’yan, puwede si Dyke. Pero Nelson kasi can go to the three-point territory and put the ball on the floor which I don’t think Mark can do at the moment.
“He is not Nelson because Nelson has an outside game … But I’m not saying he can’t do it because he really wasn’t able to do it in high school because of the position that was given to him. If you ask him to do something else, baka makuha rin niya,” Jao said, noting the young player will need to eventually improve on his outside shooting and ball handling skills if he wants to excel in college.
“He is a very good rebounder. He is not exactly athletic but he is strong and has a knack for getting the ball and getting rebounds. He can score inside too. The only problem is that he doesn’t have a perimeter (game). At the most, he is 6-2 but he is a natural four.
“For him to convert to small forward and have a decent outside game, it’s going to be difficult. Wala masyadong malalaki sa juniors. But in the seniors, it’s a different story. You have a lot of players who are 6-6, 6-7,” said the Sports5 analyst.
Jao, however, made it clear Dyke is a very good player to have, regardless of any deficiencies in his game.
“He is a nice project to have. If you put him in the market, maraming kukuha sa kanya. If you are not in a hurry, you can use him as a rookie then give him experience but in two to three years, he will certainly develop. He is a player, no question about that.”