We were in Seattle, WA last weekend to catch the King Classic, a one-day event at the Key Arena which feature some of the top teams in the Seattle area. Many thanks to Bill Nance for his hospitality at the King Classic. Here are some thoughts on a few of the notable players in the King Classic. Marvin Williams, 6-8 JR SF Seattle (Wash.) Bremerton. Williams was terrific in his game against Issaquah, particularly in the first half, when he scored twenty points and dominated the game. While Williams could end up playing the four in college, he's destined to one day play small forward in the pros. His ball handling and passing ability is surprising for a guy his size, and his outside shot is a consistent weapon. He gets to the hoop easily – explosive first step -- and is an outstanding finisher. If there are five better prospects in the country, we'd love to see them. Rodrick Stewart, 6-3 SR PG Seattle (Wash.) Rainier Beach. Rodrick is playing the point, presumably so that he can be on the court at the same time with his brother Lodrick when they get to USC. While Rodrick does have a decent handle and the requisite quickness to play the position, he doesn't really have point guard instincts. He's more of a scoring guard who happens to bring the ball up the court. He is a freakish athlete, with considerable talent, but he has a long, long way to go in terms of understanding how to play the game. Lodrick Stewart, 6-3 SR SG Seattle (Wash.) Rainier Beach. Lodrick plays a different position than his brother, but he has the same positives and negatives to his game. The positives being he can do things on a court that very few high school players can do – physically, he's extremely gifted. He can shoot it fairly well with three-point range, as well as take someone off the dribble and finish strong at the rim. He and his brother play with very good energy as well. But one gets the impression watching them that the game for the Stewarts is more about them, and not so much about the team. They have no conscience when it comes to shooting the ball. As we've said before, forget "good shot/bad shot." It's "Lodrick's shot/Rodrick's shot." And they'll frequently look for a highlight reel type of play, to the exclusion of making a good play. If they're willing to listen and learn at USC, they have a chance to be very good players at the next level. If not, well, they may earn frequent traveler miles in Henry Bibby's doghouse. Chester Giles, 6-9 JR C Seattle (Wash.) Rainier Beach. Giles looks young and his game seems young as well. A little late on several plays defensively – court awareness is not always good. But a good frame and he moves well. Showed a couple nice moves in the low post, on the few occasions when he got the ball down low. Still slender, he gets knocked out of position easily, and he could use a little more meanness. However, he has a significant upside and will get recruited at the high major level. Terrance Williams, 6-4 SO SG Seattle (Wash.) Rainier Beach. When the Stewart twins leave, it figures to be the Giles and Williams show at Rainier Beach. A very good athlete, Williams can shoot the three or mid-range shots. Good body, with big feet – he might get bigger. A likely high major recruit in a few years. Aaron Brooks, 5-11 SR PG Seattle (Wash.) Franklin. Brooks was electric in his game against Lincoln and we were extremely impressed. He's got a great burst with the ball, while still maintaining vision and not getting out of control. Plenty of players can go by someone, and get in the lane, but they can't do it while staying under control or finishing the play. Brooks plays in a different gear than everyone else and still makes great decisions. Didn't show an outside shot, but didn't really need to use it in this game – no one could cover him. With his quicks, handle and passing ability, Brooks is a tough match-up for high school guards. If he can knock down the jumper consistently, he'll be very tough to handle in college. Lyndale Burleson, 6-3 JR SG Seattle (Wash.) Franklin. Two years ago, Burleson appeared to be headed for a high major recruitment, but his skills have been slow to develop. At this point, it's tough to call him a shooting guard or point guard. He doesn't have the handle, or instincts, to play the point. But his outside shot is a long way from solid and it's difficult to see him at the two. He's a good athlete, who can slash a bit, but his skills need to improve considerably for him to play at the next level. Jordan Daisy, 5-10 FR PG Seattle (Wash.) Franklin. Good looking youngster with quicks and a nice feel. We didn't get to see him much – only played in the first half – but we liked what we saw. Maurice Shaw, 6-9 SR C Seattle (Wash.) Lincoln. Shaw was very disappointing, as he had several shots blocked and just didn't get much done. We've always thought he had a chance – great frame, good athlete – but he's moved around a lot in the last several years and his game hasn't developed. Needs to play with considerably more urgency and desire. Hans Gasser, 6-10 SR C Seattle (Wash.) Issaquah. Gasser struggled against Marvin Williams, but so will 99% of the guys who go against Williams. We liked Gasser more when he played inside and did some damage in the low-post. His outside shot is not nearly good enough for him to be taking multiple shots from 15-18 feet. However, he does have decent ability to score around the basket, with ok feet and hands.
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