The GC Ballers ended up knocking off the Panthers in the semifinals while Juice got past Louisiana Select to reach the title game. Hayward earned MVP honors despite Garrison scoring 27 in the championship contest.
The City Rocks, led by co-MVP's Mike Goodman and Jimmer Fredette, won the under-16 crown with a close victory against the Utah Swoosh. The Panthers won the 15-and-under title with a win against Team Next in the title game.
Curtis Kelly, PF, Gauchos: When he plays hard, nearly impossible to stop. However, he was up-and-down and was held to 10 points in a loss to the N.H. Playerz. Needs to give consistent effort all the time. Long, mobile shot-blocker who can also score in the post. Needs to channel his emotions on the court.
Dan Werner, F, Jersey Shore Warriors: The N.C. State-commit still didn't have his perimeter shot working, but he showed his IQ with a bevy of terrific passes. Also battled Curtis Kelly and the Gauchos inside at times. Will need to work on his quickness.
Tyler Roche, WF, N.H. Playerz: Really showed a versatile game over the last few days. Always known for his outside shot, proved he can put it on the floor – and also battled inside against guys like Curtis Kelly. In one game, he had seven assists.
Jason Bennett, C, Miami Tropics: There's no question he's improved dramatically in the past few months, but he didn't have a terrific tournament in New York. He runs the court better and can be a force on the defensive end – but his offensive game is still a work in progress.
Lazar Hayward, SG, GC Ballers: His change has changed dramatically since heading to Notre Dame Prep. Now he's got confidence – and doesn't settle from the three-point line. Isn't afraid to mix it up on the inside and has gone from a mid-major guy to someone who will have a chance to play at the high-major level because of his ability to score in a variety of ways.
Robert Garrison, PG, GC Ballerz: He's a heady, underrated backcourt guy from Niagara Falls (N.Y.) who excels in the classroom and will do a post-grad year at Exeter (N.H.). Got to the basket and made things happen.
Brian McKenzie, SG, Team Odom: Isn't a guy whose gotten a lot of publicity, but the 6-3, 185-pound Xaverian shooting guard can really light it up from the outside. Needs to work on putting the ball on the floor and taking it to the basket with more authority, but can definitely play in the A-10. Has terrific grades and is also looking at Ivy's.
Larry Davis, SG, Team Odom: After missing Friday night's game, the N.C. State commit did what he does well on Saturday – he's a stat stuffer, scoring his share of points, rebounding, doing a lot of the dirty work as well. Just a solid overall player who doesn't have many weaknesses.
Antonio Pena, F, N.Y. Panthers: For some reason, hasn't gotten the respect he probably deserves. He's always done most of his work in the paint, but now has displayed the ability to step up and do some things. He's aggressive, plays hard and has Big East written all over him.
Rob Thomas, F, N.Y. Panthers: He's still not back to the Rob Thomas of old (still working his way back into shape), but he played well for the Panthers. Has to remember what made him successful, which is dominating in the paint and then expanding his game. He's started to fall in love with a perimeter game that still isn't quite there yet.
Jon Kreft, C, South Florida Heat: This kid was extremely impressive. Already committed to Florida State and if he learns to play hard all the time, he could be an all-ACC performer down the road. Skilled, blocks shots, is athletic and is 6-11. Need we say more.
Edwin Ubiles, SF, Albany City Rocks: For some reason, this long, thin forward at St. Thomas More has managed to remain under the radar, He's difficult to stop, whether it's in transition or in the halfcourt. Finds a way to get to the basket and finished strong.
A.J. Stewart, F, Miami Tropics: Here's a guy who has gotten overlooked because he's had to wait his turn. Plays on a loaded Arlington Country Day (Fla.) squad, but is long, versatile and just needs to become more assertive.
Kyron Stokes, G, Team Texas Swoosh: We'd never heard of him before, but he is a name for mid-majors to watch. He handles it fairly well, passes the ball and also was on fire from 3-point range. The Mansfield Summit (Texas) backcourt player
Clint Houston, PF, Team Texas Swoosh: Big body who didn't get much down, but his size will make him a player to watch over the next year or so. Attends Flower Mound Marcus High and has nice size.
Miles Beatty, G, Playaz: With most of the big names on the Playaz elsewhere, Beatty moved up to the 17s and hardly looked out of place. He's got good size, is a quality ballhandler and can also get to the basket.
Leonard Washington, F, Louisiana Select: He's a machine as far as production per minute is concerned. Some will pass on him because he's undersized, but this kid is a P.J. Tucker type with better skills away from the basket. Arguably the most underrated player because of his consistent effort every play.
Tyreke Evans, G, Gauchos: Felt his way with the Gauchos and really didn't feel comfortable until late in his third game when he took over and nearly led the team back from a big deficit against the N.H. Playerz. He finds a way to get into the lane and finish at will – and his outside shot came on after starting off somewhat inconsistent. Also extremely unselfish with the ball in his hands.
Jamal Turner, SG-SF, Junior Celtics: The 6-3, 180-pound Thayer Academy (Mass.) rising sophomore can get to the basket and also passes it well. Needs to work on his outside shot in the next couple of years.
Andrew McCarthy, PF, Junior Celtics: Skilled big man who is still growing into his body. Needs to work on his athleticism and is somewhat awkward running the floor, but he is long and has a nice touch.
Jordan Theodore, PG, Gauchos: Small point guard knocked down four trifectas and also got into the lane in a victory against BABC. Attends Paterson Catholic (N.J.)
Jamaal Coombs, SF, BABC: This kid is long and can really get to the basket. He played sparingly at Charlestown High this past season and will transfer to Lawrence Academy this season. Arguably the best in a quality Massachusetts Class of 2008.
NOTES Curtis Kelly listed a bunch of schools – Uconn, Syracuse, North Carolina, Texas, Georgia Tech, Pittsburgh, Florida, Louisville and St. John's. One source said that the Huskies just might be the team to beat. … Jason Bennett will take an unofficial visit to Cincinnati next weekend. He is also looking at Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Arkansas and Illinois. … Bryan McKenzie of Xaverian mentioned Yale, Georgetown, Columbia and Seton Hall.