No one put together a better half of basketball than Wenyen Gabriel's opening frame during the final game on Sunday. Gabriel, who has grown to a legitimate 6-foot-10, used his versatility on both ends of the floor. Offensively, he attacked the rim, both in the half court and in transition, plus made a mid-range pull-up and an off the catch three. Defensively, he was active, played with energy and contested shots. Gabriel is one of the elite talents in all of high school basketball. He scored 21 points and reeled in 11 rebounds in his only game in the event.
Although De'Riante Jenkins played two games during the event, it was his opening game that impressed the most. Jenkins scored 32 points on 13-for-24 shooting. Jenkins was active on both ends, as he usually is, but it was his jump shot that impressed. Jenkins connected on four three-pointers and multiple mid-range pull-ups. Jenkins has an impressive frame with wide shoulders and lengthy arms. He’s quick, athletic and can defend multiple positions. Will Wade and VCU are getting a heck of a talent.
Xavier signed a tough, bruising power forward that brings energy every time he hits the floor. On the opening night of the Prep Showcase, Tyrique Jones, who stands 6-foot-7, was all over the glass had a number of put back dunks and lay ins. Jones is physical and doesn’t mind contact. He runs the floor with a purpose and will contest shots. In all Jones finished 18 points and five rebounds in a win over Spire Institute.
Fresh off his commitment to Miami, Bruce Brown certainly impressed those in attendance at the Prep Showcase. Brown is known for his motor and playing with great energy, and certainly didn’t disappoint in that area. Brown was aggressive when he had the ball and looked to attack the basket. Brown pushed the break, made plays in transition and used his athleticism at the rim. He also provided a defensive spark and proved to be a very good on ball defender. Brown finished with 29 points on 12-for-20 shooting. He also added nine boards and four assists.
Marcus Ottey, who ran with Canada Elite over the summer, may be small in size (6-foot), but he’s an explosive athlete that makes plays at the rim and in transition. Ottey’s speed and aggressive style was tough for oppositions to keep in check. Ottey lived in the paint in both games and is a nifty scorer that adjusts his shots well once he’s at the rim. He’s also capable of knocking down jumpers from deep, as he hit three of his four three-point attempts in his second game. Ottey scored more points than any other player in the event, pumping in 60 points in two games, including a high of 38.
Kellan Grady's opening game was eye opening. At 6-foot-4, Grady played on the ball for John Carroll’s program and he impressed in that role, especially in the first game. Grady has a smooth game and good court vision. He’s also a capable long-range threat, as he made four three-pointers. He’ll need to tighten up his ball handling going forward, but the 2017 prospect has a lot of upside.
Deng Gak, a native of Australia, was one of the pleasant surprises to come out of the National Prep Showcase. Gak, a 6-foot-9 post player in the 2017 class, still lacks the strength to be physical around the basket, but he possess impressive skill, length and mobility. He has a quality set of hands and good touch around the basket. Gak, who is 17 and played on Australia’s U19 team this past summer, scored 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in his first high school game in the United Stats.
An active and versatile combo forward, Kouat Noi Noi had a strong weekend for Montverde Prep. At 6-foot-7, Noi used his size, length and athleticism to get on the glass. He was factor around the basket and was a relentless rebounder. He’s skilled enough to start the break and even attacked some from the perimeter. He’s also capable of making catch and shoot jump shots. This is a quality late option and worthy of high major interest.