Las Vegas: Day Two, Part B

LAS VEGAS – Trey Zeigler picked a great time for one his biggest outings. Plus, TMP's Bruce Ellington rose to the occasion in a breakout game.

Joe Jackson, PG, Memphis Magic: This Joe Jackson character is a bad, bad boy. He put his foot on the gas early and didn't give the Nashville Celtics much of a chance. To think two years ago he was an undersized shooting guard and now he's one of the best point guards (and fastest players) is a credit to his ability to grasp the position and put polish on his game.

Fab Melo, C, Fla. Rams: He just makes you smile. Fab's one of those welcoming personalities. Because this is AAU ball and he doesn't get nearly the touches he deserves, you see things in spurts. For instance, guys his size aren't supposed to spin in the lane and dunk on people. Still learning the game, his ceiling is very high.

Bruce Ellington, PG, TMP: When a guy has his moment, you hope to be there. Ellington had his in the morning against Net Gain. His team was down double-digits and he led them back with quick drives, tough finishes and a pair of triples. The speed ranks at or near the top in terms of point guards nationally but there's a hitch. Ellington is also a football player and he's in the south so he could be a coin flip to play just one sport. He told a throng of media that he currently prefers basketball. He had 21 points (19 in the second half), made all but two of his shots and dropped a pair of assists. The comparison is Nate Robinson without the dunk contest ability.

R.J. Slawson, PF, TMP: Snuck him into our Top 100 in the spring and glad we did. Ellington gets the pilfers, Slawson the shot blocks. He's an even better prospect down the road. Against Net Gain, he ran into a 7-footer that gave him trouble so he'll need to get stronger and come up with counters to avoid the bulrush technique he uses now. Having said that, he's very athletic and the natural instincts as a rejecter are strong.

Trey Zeigler, SG, Team Detroit: The New York Panthers won't want to see him again, that's for sure. The strong bodied wing player gave them buckets; 25 points to be specific. Love his mid-range, like how he finishes with strength and doesn't shy from contact. You wouldn't know at first glance, but Zeigler has sneaky bounce. He's the kind of guy you win a lot of games with in college and should be an all-league caliber player over his career.

Rion Brown, SF/SG, WW Renegades: Guys who can score are premium players, especially when they have athleticism. Brown scored 22 points in 22 minutes of action Thursday. His shot always looks like it's got a chance to fall. The only chink in the armor during the game were a few careless passes. Easy win, big game for one of the summer's risers.

Jelan Kendrick, PG, Memphis Magic: Without getting carried away and saddling expectations on a guy, I'll say this: Kendrick is the closest thing we've seen to Shaun Livingston since 2004. The bodies and games are similar. Livingston was a superior passer at the same age (one of the best this decade) while Kendrick has more scoring tools. Livingston delivered the goods each time out, Kendrick's game is maturing and he's made great strides since last summer. Tossing him onto the Magic's roster is like dropping Albert Pujols in the Dodgers lineup and asking him to hit behind Manny.

Josh Heustis, SF, Belmont Shore: He played last season in Great Falls, Montana, so he's not been baptized into the mainstream yet. Nice looking athlete, big time student. Slowly beginning to receive offers.

Tarik Black, PF, Memphis Magic: When he gets loose and there isn't a body to put on him he will inflict pain. Black's offense comes at and thru the rim.

Quincy Miller, PF, D-One: It's been rough sledding for the boys from N.C. thus far. Miller was a bright spot on Thursday with his effort. On one possession he blocked three shots. His on court communication is noticeable and his motor ran high. Basically, he blocked, altered or chased everything in sight. Sometimes settles for jumpers though he can make them; best when he achieves a good balance. 16 points in game we watched.

Adonis Thomas, SF, Memphis Magic: A very good basketball player. Physically he's been blessed and uses his body to his advantage as a defender. He's got near perfect on court demeanor and has the look of a guy who likes to win.

Heard of Anthony Diloreto? Well, you're going to. He's a seven-footer out of Minnesota who signed with Cal-Poly. He then made a bad choice and found himself in some legal trouble. Good news is on Aug. 6 things should clear up and his bad decision may wind up not costing him too much. How good is he? He can be a high-major signee. He's a lefty who blocks shots, has good touch around the rim and has the makings of a late bloomer. Lots of folks will be interested and we'll see who bites. …

Chanse Creekmur and Cole Stefan of Net Gain are legit behind the line. Santa Clara has a good one coming in Creekmur and Stefan will get mid-major burn too. … Bruce Ellington has elite speed. When a guy has a basketball trait that is significantly higher than 95% of his peers, it's very important. Mix in his talent with the speed and you have a Top 100 prospect with a football/basketball decision to make. … Love J.J. Moore as a player and prospect. Really want to see more consistent efforts because he's capable. … Center Walter Pitchford (Team Detroit) has the body and some natural tools. Looks like a guy that will blossom in a mid-major program in time. …

Dominique Ferguson has been banged up. He didn't play yesterday but gave great effort today. … Ray McCallum, aside being a very good player, he's got big time character. "We're recruiting him because my program needs more character," a college coach said. Get in line. … Damien Leonard, a junior, has an elite stroke. Behind the line he's quick and comfortable. Next step is developing another scoring aspect to compliment a sweet jump shot. … Casey Prather is developing more and more confidence in his jumper. …

D'Montre Edwards has an offer from High Point. … Ellington has offers from South Carolina, Radford, Southern Cal and Appalachian State. Darrin Horn and Kevin O'Neill were in the crowd. … Quincy Miller listed Duke, Wake Forest, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Kansas, Florida, South Carolina and Baylor. He said Coach K has been to all of his games. … Trey Zeigler said he will definitely visit Arizona State and UCLA. His father, the head coach at Central Michigan, has been putting a bug in his ear about playing for dad. LSU, Arizona, Michigan, Michigan State, Miami, Syracuse and Oklahoma are involved. …

Wing Kris Brown lists Memphis, Alabama, Tennessee, Missouri and Miami. SE Missouri, UTEP and Baylor have offered. …

Josh Selby and Roscoe Smith reportedly drew an all-star crowd. Between the coaches assembled one observer counted 9 national titles. The crowd: Mike Krzyzewski, Jim Calhoun, Billy Donovan, Bill Self, Gary Williams. John Calipari was also there. … Duke sent the full staff for Quincy Miller. … Tennessee had a full staff for Adonis Thomas and Joe Jackson. … Mississippi State went three deep in a show of force for Rion Brown. Horn and Auburn's Jeff Lebo joined Miami's Frank Haith. …

Roy Williams, Bruce Pearl, Paul Hewitt and Mike Anderson watched Casey Prather at night. … Jelan Kendrick's crowd included Pearl, Mark Fox, Haith and Donovan. … Fab's crowd included Rick Pitino, Leonard Hamilton, Mick Cronin and assistants from at least Syracuse and Georgetown. … Clemson dispatched the full staff for Damien Leonard. Roy Williams, Hewitt and Horn joined them. …

"Trust your guys!"

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