Adidas Elite 8 - Day 1 Recap
The Adidas Select Series came storming through New England last Thursday & Friday, and featured not only top New England talent, but a ton of individual and collective talent from outside the region. With Brandeis University playing host, the following players stood out on Thursday:
Patrick Harding (Middlesex Magic, 2018)- The incoming Suffield post-grad not only sets very good screens, but makes reads off how his man reacts. He recorded several easy baskets by slipping if his defender hedges out too far. Harding also seals his man very effectively in the paint, making him hard to defend.
Dante Rivera (Mass Rivals, 2018)- The Methuen HS product is a small point guard but is very efficient on the court. Confident with the ball, Rivera does not turn it over, and uses ball fakes well & changes speeds so that it is very hard to guard him outside. His floater makes him dangerous to score at all three levels.
Georges Lefebvre (Brookwood Elite, 2021)- The young big built upon his strong Super 16 performance in May here this week. He is always in excellent help side position on the weak side, but has the body to be more than just a shot blocker. With a developing outside game and the ability to rebound on the defensive end, Lefebvre was one of the most impressive prospects in the gym.
Kevin Otoo (Peoples Basketball, 2018)- The rising senior from Toronto is a big-time athlete at the point guard position. Standing at 5'10, Otoo loves to push the ball up the court and can also knock down deep 3-pointers.
Tyler Nelson (QCAA, 2018)- No, MIAA fans, not that Tyler Nelson. This version is a 6'5 athlete from Charlotte who may not be done growing. Nelson owned three of the nastiest finishes of Thursday, the top one showcasing his long strides on his way to the basket and finishing over an opposing player.
Wildens Leveque (Mass Rivals, 2018)- The Rivals big man showed flashes of his potential on Thursday. He is quick off his feet and gets his hands on a lot of offensive rebounds. Leveque also excelled at blocking shots rotating over from the weak side.
Peter Wetuvanga (Peoples Basketball, 2018)- Combined with Otoo, Wetuvanga gives Peoples Basketball a dynamic back court that has athleticism, length, speed and scoring ability. Wetuvanga impressed with his shiftiness and his ability to get in the paint with one breakdown move.
Max Bonney-Liles (Team Saints, 2018)- The New Hampshire native is a very good shooter off the catch and off the dribble with his pull-up. At 6'4, he has very good size for a wing, and also showed his improvement with his ball handling, which will only make him more dangerous.
Emmanuel Bonsu (Brookwood Elite, 2020)- Already possessing a body that most college programs would take right now, Bonsu converted several acrobatic finishes in transition, and attacks the basket with reckless abandonment.
Scott Preston (Evolution, 2018)- Preston shot well early on, opening up driving lanes for him to finish at the rim or kick out to open teammates. He takes good angles while breaking his defender down, knowing to attack the defender's hip.
Tyler Aronson (Middlesex Magic, 2018)- Aronson's quick release is due to his ability to have his feet set, hands up & hips low as soon as he catches the ball. He shot the ball very well again, and made some big baskets late for his Middlesex Magic team in their game on Thursday afternoon.
Myles Washington (QCAA, 2018)- A 6'5 forward, Washington is powerful and can really elevate. Someone who can defend & rebound inside and play both inside & outside on offense is a hot commodity right now, and Washington proved he can do all of that.
Abdul Ajai (RI Elite, 2018)- Ajai was all over the floor on Thursday. His ability to move laterally enables him to hedge hard on ball screens, but also to slide over to help from the weak side. His energy is something that his team feeds off of, and he brought it Thursday night.
Langston Gaither (CTAB Elite, 2018)- The Virginia native stands at 6'5 with a strong build. Not exclusively a post player, however, Gaither has an inside-out game that impressed the college coaches in attendance. He passes, shoots & rebounds very well, and is an intriguing prospect for the next level.
Tyler Mola (Mass Select, 2018)- Always solid with the ball, the point guard is now expanding his ways to make shots. He knocked down a couple pull-ups over the course of the day, and also drilled deep 3-pointers off the jab.
Jamaal Waters (Mass Rivals, 2019)- A wide body, Waters showed a nice spin move to the baseline. He is productive on the glass and fights for good rebounding position with his lower body.
David Kasanganay (QCAA, 2018)- Hailing from Charlotte, NC, The 6'2 guard beat his man for backdoor layups three times in one game, and showed the ability to knock down jumpers from outside with ease.
Robert Stankard (Boston Bobcats, 2021)- The 6'6 forward collected several tip-ins off his aggressiveness in going to the offensive boards. The Groton School rising freshman has a good looking shooting stroke. Stankard has the look of a prospect who can develop into a nice player moving forward.
Malek Williams (ICC Truth, 2018)- From Rochester, NY, Williams elevates off the ground very quickly to block shots. At 6'4, he is more than capable of guarding three or four positions on the court.
Mike St. Laurent (LOX, 2017)- The 6'8 big man is very capable of stepping out and knocking down 3-pointers. St. Laurent also displayed promising post moves and a soft scoring touch inside.
Melvin Worley (Evolution, 2018)- Worley made winning plays throughout the day, whether it be making the extra pass or skying high for a big defensive rebound. He blends in very well with this team, and is a prospect for college coaches to keep tabs on.
Joris Meiklejohn (Brother's Keepers, 2020)- The young point guard is solid and under control, especially against older competition. He gets everyone involved and does not force his own offense.
Gio Thompson (Mass Rivals, 2021)- Loaded with potential and still growing, Thompson uses his length effectively on the glass and on the defensive end. As he continues to grow and expand his skill set, Thompson could be one to watch down the road.