Other than some minor interruptions from the fashion show after party crowd in the Crowne Plaza hotel, I was able to wake up well rested and ready for games on Saturday morning. Now, sitting at Chili’s taking a lunch break I thought I’d take some time to break down some of the guys I saw this morning and early afternoon.
They Are Who We Thought They Were
Quincy Miller, PF, D-One Sports- He is certainly hunting jumpers (maybe a bit too much) but it’s hard to doubt his immense talent. D-One got spanked by the Saint Louis Eagles but Miller had stretches where he was hitting deep jumpers, blocking shots and getting to the rim for dunks. Adding bulk would really help him around the paint where his quickness and length are already big weapons.
Mike Shaw, PF, Mac Irvin Fire- It seems like Shaw has been around forever and 6-foot-8 four man still tantalizes with his face-up ability. Saturday morning he was smoking deep jumpers, handling the glass on the defensive end and making some very sharp passes. A good, not great, athlete, he’s looking a bit more streamlined. Still, it would really be nice to see him get in the paint and mix it up a bit more on the offensive end.
Brad Beal, SG, St. Louis Eagles- As he gets older, Beal continues to add good muscle to his long and lean frame. He’s become quicker off the bounce and his athleticism at the rim is a bit undervalued because of how easy he makes things look. Against D-One Sports, Beal couldn’t miss from deep or mid-range as he cruised to a 30 point outing without breaking a sweat. He put an exclamation point on his game by ripping Quincy Miller at halfcourt and pulling up to swish a three on a one on none break.
Stock On The Rise
Nino Jackson, PG, Athlete’s First- A super quick class of 2012 prospect, Jackson was very impressive. The 6-foot-1 player out of Ardmore (Okla.) High is a relentless attacker of the rim who can also pull-up and drain jumpers out to the three point line. A flashy passer, he’s a bit out of control but clearly very talented and a high major prospect. Even better, he’s a big time defender who rips passes out of the air and picks opponents pockets.
Ben McLemore, SG/SF, St. Louis Eagles- As expected, the super athletic wing is making his mark on Boo Williams. He attacks the rim, shoots pull-up jumpers and makes big time plays in transition. Still very rough around the edges, his upside is immense and it’s hard not to love his commitment to rebounding from the wing position.
Chris Bryant, PF, Team Florida- He had a few finishes at the rim rattle out because of a wickedly bent rim, but the long armed and quick insider was otherwise impressive. Gets off the floor quickly and fully extends his arms allowing him to play bigger than his size. Narrow shoulders are a concern for adding bulk but he has the look of a guy who should make plenty of top 100 lists.
Tyler Harris, SF, Albany City Rocks 16’s- The younger brother of 2010 McDonald’s All-American Tobias Harris, Tyler could be heading down that same road. A skinny 6-foot-6 lefty, Tyler is a natural small forward with a high skill level and lots of energy. He gets tips at the rims, scores off the dribble and hits some jumpers. He’s lacking in strength, but does have good lateral quickness and overall athleticism. Watched him go for 28 in a win over the Southern Kings #2 team in the 16’s.
More Early Saturday Notes
Went and took another look at the Arkansas Wings group and still don’t know what to make of them. 6-foot-4 Ky Madden is running the point for them, but hardly looked to score and really seems out of place as a PG. He seems so much more comfortable as a slashing wing who is particularly dangerous between eight and 12 feet. 6-foot-6 David Rivers continues to show flashes as well. He’s long, lean and athletic. Hard to think there isn’t a potential high major player somewhere in there. … Cimeon Bowers of Playground Elite is definitely going to be a four man on the next level. At 6-foot-6 he’s quite strong and willing to battle. He’s also an eager shooter of the ball and relentlessly hunts shots whether they are good or not. Exactly where he fits on the next level remains up to debate. … As a freshman at Oklahoma City (Okla.) Douglass, 5-foot-8 Stevie Clark developed a reputation as a shooter. Playing for Athlete’s First 17 and under team he’s definitely been stripping the nets. Another to watch for Athlete’s first is 6-foot-5 2011 wing Josh Richardson from Edmond Sante Fe. Long, athletic and can shoot it a bit as well. …
Went to watch BABC in hopes of getting a good look at Syracuse bound (and quickly rising up the rankings) combo guard Michael Carter-Williams. Unfortunately MCW got hurt early on (after looking quite good). But, that didn’t stop BABC from beating up on a very talented (but struggling) Team Texas squad. Shabazz Napier looks like Monta Ellis’ mini-me and has the same attitude when it comes to getting his shots. If it feels like leather, odds are the six footer who is pledged to UConn is letting it fly. … California Supreme’s Kevin Johnson has lost a significant amount of weight. The 6-foot-9 center from Woodland Hills (CA) Taft is easily a high major guy. In fact, he’s lost so much weight that he’d benefit from gaining some it back (so long as it’s muscle) so that he can be more of a power player. …
Too early to make any kind of call on the status of Tony Wroten. Way over listed at 6-foot-6 (he’s 6-4, tops) the Seattle (Wash.) Garfield product was attacking the rim, making slick dishes and getting to the line. Via twitter he reported that he had a triple double and though I’m not sure about that, he was pretty effective. …