Yesterday, Pump N Run defeated East Anchorage by 72 points and this evening they crushed the Nor Cal Elite by 71. And that's the rule more so than the exception. Today I had to leave two games at halftime because the point differential in both games was more than 25.
It simply makes no sense to bracket teams in this manner. The fans don't enjoy it. The college coaches can't evaluate the talent when one team is far superior. The winning team gets very little satisfaction from the victory and the losing team goes back to their hotel completely demoralized.
One of the games I left early featured David Padgett, a 6-10 junior center from Las Vegas (Foothills), Nev. and playing for the Pump N Run. At halftime Pump N Run was leading 42-23 and there was little doubt which team would come out on top. Pump N Run won the game 95-53.
Padgett is a big-time talent in the Class of '03. He's not particularly fast, but he runs the floor well, is an active defender and plays hard at all times. He has some nice post moves, and he can also step out hit the short jumper. He has great hands but needs to work on his footwork to get ready for college basketball at the elite level.
During his team's second game had Padgett 12 points, pulled down seven rebounds and added four blocks. Most of the four rebounds came on the offensive end. On the defensive side of the ball, Padgett tries to block every shot and is often out of position for the board. But he'll learn positioning, and when he does he'll be a great shot blocker.
Padgett's teammate, Arizona recruiting target Richard Chaney, got lost in the shuffle during the blow out. Chaney only attempted four shots, and spent most of his time playing defense on inside. Chaney made two field goals and finished with five points, five rebounds, two steals and an assist. Chaney tried to get his team involved, but at least three good passes bounced off the hands of teammates, and several sure assists were instead turnovers.
Texas Blue Chip 1 defeated Santa Margarita 77-54 in one of the more entertaining games this afternoon. The Texas team features Michigan-bound Daniel Horton, a 6-3 two-guard from Cedar Hills (HS), Tex., and Chris Bosh, a 6-10 forward from Dallas (Lincoln), Tex. Horton's younger brother Jason, a 6-0 sophomore, also plays for the Blue Chips.
Horton is quick and a smooth shooter. He loves to get his defender off balance by faking the drive, then stepping back behind the arc and nailing the three-pointer. Horton is a defensive player's nightmare. He has great ball handling skills and can create for himself or a teammate. So it's difficult to play him tight or he'll blow by.
Many of Horton's passes ended up in the hands of Bosh. Bosh is a multi-talented big man who has shot up four inches in the last year and might grow more. Until the spurt, Bosh was strictly a wing. Now he can take a bigger defender off the dribble or post up a smaller defender. He's a true combo-forward.
"I thought I was going to be a three but I kept growing," Bosh said.
He has very good ball skills, although he needs to work on his right hand, and he's deadly from beyond the arc.
Michigan has Horton in the bag and Wolverine Head Coach Tommy Amaker was sitting courtside protecting his prized catch. Amaker was also there to let Bosh know there's a Michigan scholarship waiting for him as well.
Bosh lists Georgia Tech, Michigan, Florida and Miami (Fla.). Michigan is the leader and Tech is still a factor. Florida and Miami (Fla.) will soon be scratched according to my sources.