Playaz, Rivals Win Pools in Vegas
With pool play wrapping up and the single elimination bracket play set to begin on Friday both the Mass Rivals and New England Playaz had won their respective pools and advanced to the championship bracket at the Adidas Uprising Summer Championships.
The Playaz went a perfect 3-0 opening with a Wednesday night win over Texas Elite 78-40 and then a pair of close games on Thursday over Compton Magic 74-68 and Florida Sons 70-65.
Tremont Waters has continued to be the maestro. He opened with 17 points and 7 assists in game one, had 18 and 4 on Thursday morning and 16 points, 8 assists and 7 boards in Thursday's nightcap. Simultaneously though, Tomas Murphy is playing some of his best basketball. He went for 13 and 6 in the opener and followed that up with 13 more on Thursday morning.
A.J. Brodeur has been a model of consistency, finishing in double figures in all three games and going for a double-double Thursday night while Kellan Grady has gotten better with each passing game and Ian Sistare found his shooting stroke to the tune of four threes against the Sons.
The Rivals opened with a 63-56 win over Double Pump Elite as Wenyen Gabriel delivered arguably his best game of the summer with 26 points, 8 rebounds and 3 blocks while the likes of Coach K, Kevin Ollie, Bill Self, Jay Wright, Shaka Smart, Johnny Dawkins and Ed Cooley all looking on. Makai Ashton-Langford added 19 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists.
The Rivals knocked off Team FAST on Thursday morning as Ashton-Langford got the better of his head-to-head match-up with ESPN 100 guard Payton Pritchard, going for 27 points on 10-16 shooting from the floor while handing out 3 assists vs. 0 turnovers. Chris Baldwin had his latest strong game as well with 10 points and 8 rebounds as the likes of Bob Huggins and Derek Kellogg looked on.
With their pool already won, the Rivals elected to rest some of their starters in Thursday's nightcap but still almost came away with a win over the Eric Gordon All-Stars before falling 72-67. Four different players scored in double figures though as Jarrod Simmons finished with a team high 13 points and 7 rebounds while Azar Swain buried a handful of threes for 12 points and Greg Kuakumensah and Saul Phiri finished with 10 each.