Chicago Tournaments: Day Two

Chicago, Ill. – On Day Two of the swing through Chicago a return trip to the McDipper Tournament as well as a stop at the Jack Tosh Holiday Classic were made. Leading the way was sophomore guard Kendall Stephens whose impressive performances are drawing Big Ten offers by the way.

Nnanna Egwu, C, St. Ignatius – Egwu is playing his way back into shape after surgery, and is just beginning to scratch the surface. He runs the floor very well, shows good hands, and after a tough start showed an ability to score facing the rim in the mid-range. Also Egwu is a very good shot blocker who both has timing and the ability to keep shots in-bounds after he blocks them. The massive growth area for Egwu is on the glass. He doesn't have a great feel for how to rebound, and can find himself out of position at times. With his size, length, and athleticism he has the raw tools to be a good rebounder, but that is certainly a growth area for him going forward.

Greg Mays, PF, Crete-Monroe – Yesterday it was Aaron Armstead who made waves, today it was another UW-Green Bay signee who showed up, and that is Mays. Mays is a long and very athletic power forward who doesn't have a ton of skill yet, but should develop very nicely in the Horizon League. He is strong and knows how to rebound along with being a solid defender. Mays is definitely a work in progress, but a good catch for Green Bay.

Jamie Crockett, SF, Crete-Monroe – The ultra-athletic Crockett does what he always does. He showed off his impressive two footed leaping ability and played with a high motor. Despite having a bandage above his eye, Crockett wasn't afraid to mix it up on the boards and played solid defense. He needs to improve his shooting range, but the future DePaul Blue Demon definitely has no question marks surrounding his motor and athleticism.

Bernard Braime, PF/C, Thornton – Braime is a very solid post player who knows where he excels. Unlike so many big guys, Braime plays down low and tries to dominate in the paint. His athleticism isn't great, and Braime does need to get into better shape, but the hands and feel around the rim are there for him to be a solid mid-level player going forward.

Maurice Joiner, SF, Leo – Joiner is a solid 6-foot-6 athlete who plays on the wing and knows how to use his strength and athleticism. Not very highly talked about in Windy City circles, Joiner can score off the bounce, and really knows how to rebound the ball. He didn't show too much in terms of a jump shot, but Joiner has a great frame and with added reps has the release where he could be a good shooter going forward.

Kendall Stephens, SG, St. Charles East – Stephens clearly is one of the better off guards in the class. He can really shoot the ball along with possessing a high basketball IQ. Stephens is currently about 6-foot-4 with very long arms and good athleticism, but it is his shooting stroke that draws the most attention. He knows how to use screens and set up defenders, and then once he gets open and a clean look the ball looks like it is going in. For Stephens it is simply a matter of getting stronger, and that will come in time. He looks like he could grow another few inches, and that might turn him into a small forward, but there is no doubt he will be a high-major player going forward.

Russell Woods, PF, Leo – This is another good looking young forward who is beginning to scratch the surface of how good he can be. With high-majors beginning to sniff around, Woods is stepping up. He is a solid rebounder with good size and long arms. Woods could stand to get stronger, and needs to refine his offensive game, but the tools are there for him to be recruited at the high-major level, and the interest is certainly beginning to come.

Tyler Ulis, PG, Marian Catholic – Even though Ulis is now in Illinois he is originally from Ohio and is very reminiscent of current Ohio University signee Stevie Taylor. Ulis has the ball on a string and looks capable of scoring, but he is just very small and needs to get a ton stronger going forward. Decision making on what is or isn't a good shot also seems to be a growth area, but if Ulis grows, with his ball handling and slick passing ability he will be one to watch.

Kendall Stephens came into the day with an offer from Northwestern and added another from Wisconsin. Also interest is coming in from Purdue, Illinois, Michigan, DePaul, Southern Illinois, and Boston University.

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