BALL: Monday AAU Nationals Wrap-Up, Part Two

Earlier I stated Tobias Harris was the most talented player on the court and expect that might have raised some eyebrows considering there were two top 5 players from the class of 2011.

Well consider that Harris put up the 20 compared to only a deuce by Christmas and seven by Gilchrist. And consider he did it against this team. Its not like he put up these points on a "select" team from New Hampshire. Harris did it against on of the top defenders in the rising Junior class (Christmas) and one of the top athletes in that class (Gilchrist) who is some have claimed to be the top recruit in any class.

None of this is meant as a negative toward either Rakeem or Micheal but rather to point out how strong a player Tobias is. He is doing this against quality opponents. Ranked number 29 in the class and only the sixth best power forward?? Scout needs to do some ranking adjustment!

Unfortunately I did not catch Irving today but he has an 8:00 a.m. tip off and I plan on being there. Other players of interest, some reportedly has interest to or from UK that I had the pleasure of watching today included Cameron Clark and Branden Dawson.

With Clark I was disappointed. Maybe my expectations were too high or maybe he was just off. Dawson is a player that Rainman mentioned and he has a pretty good nose so I made it a point to catch the last game of the evening which featured his team but apparently there is also a Brandon (with an o) who plays for a GA team. I'm sure Rainman's Dawson is better then mine.

As for the tourney in general, I noticed a couple of players not associated with the Cats yet that were impressive. Players that caught my eye are 1) Brice Kofane and 2) Robert Arnold. Kofane is a team mate of Tobias Harris and is a joy to watch. He is a true defensive presence who has a great knack for blocking shots. He is definitely a game changer on defense. Again, not a UK target but still an interesting player.

As for Arnold, he put up the game of the night or at least the best game I witnessed. I have no link or information on this kid but I'll tell you he put up 28 points on Tobias Harris' Albany City Rocks team and did it in every possible manner including blanketed treys, put backs, drives and pull ups. But it didn't stop there as he was also playing solid defense. He had the stands buzzing and several head coaches sent assistant coaches over to find out who this kid was. It was one of those performances that makes attending these events so fun.

Finally, I want to throw one name out there. A name some would say put on the back burner but I say go with the slow cook crock pot. The name? Dakari Johnson. This freshman to be, age 13, is already 6-foot-7. It was fun to see a kid playing and just being thrilled to be on the floor. Apparently he has relatives in the commonwealth so how knows. I may have just seen out starting center for our TENTH national championship!

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