6-8, 220 (Small Forward)
Shades Valley Tech (AL)
AAU Team: M33M Magic
Christian Watford is a new school combo forward with nice bounce in his game. When watching Christian play the one thing that jumps out about this young man is his aggressiveness offensively. Versatility is Watford's calling-card making use of a devastating midrange jump shot as his primary weapon. Christian displayed the ability to use the bounce to set up a pull up jumper on smaller defenders or simply blow by larger players to finish strong at and above the rim. Also on display was his impressive wingspan which helped on the defensive end as he had 3 steals in the game we watched. A good but not great shot blocker, Watford will need to continue to add weight to his impressive wide shouldered frame. Rebounding is also a plus as Watford was active on both the offensive and defensive boards.
Areas of Improvement
And of course with all young players he also has some areas in which he will need to improve. Lack of consistent hustle was missing if things were not going well. Also lateral movement on defense will need to be improved as well to take advantage of his impressive athleticism. Footwork in the paint is an area of improvement as this will complete his offensive arsenal.
Christian Watford will be special player once he gets to college. He has all the tools offensively and the body defensively to be a complete player on the collegiate level. He will need to play for a coach that will push him to be the best. He does have some lazy tendencies that if not properly checked can be the down fall of his very bright future. He will remind Louisville fans of Earl Clark. Though not as tall, he has that type of versatility to be a matchup nightmare in the future. A stat stuffer as evidenced by his line in the game we watched: 24 points, 9 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 blocks, 1 assist. Christian has a bright future ahead of him, and to be sure this young man is one to watch from here until the early signing period.
Stephan Van Treese
6-8, 225 (Power Forward)
Lawrence North (IN) High
AAU Team: Indiana Elite One
Stephan is a coach's dream. He is a yes sir, no sir type of kid anyone would love to have on their roster. A reliable high energy motor is what Van Treese brings to the table. Heart and hustle to go along with above average athleticism is on full display. A good on ball defender and rebounder Stephan is a winner and makes the plays that will help any team to the winners circle. Van Treese is also adept at getting out on the fast break and finishing above the rim. Stephan will remind Louisville fans of former Cardinal Ellis Myles with his high basketball IQ and do anything to win mentality. He is the type of guy that will run through a brick wall if his coach asked and that will serve him well in the future.
Areas of Improvement
Listed at 6-8.5, Van Treese is probably smaller than listed. This will not be as big an issue at the collegiate level, but more important in long term projections. Also his offensive game pretty much consists of layups, dunks, and putbacks. Stephan does not even look at the rim when receiving the ball 10 feet or further out. A jump shot will need to be developed to keep the defense honest.
Stephan Van Treese will bring plenty of positives to whichever campus he chooses in the coming months. He is a rugged rebounder and defender that will give his all on the court. Not only an accomplished player on the court but Stephan's father informed InsideTheVille.com that he recently won an academic All-America award. While his pro potential is a question, his college outlook is very bright as he has the tools to come in and play important minutes as a freshman.