Spiece Run N Slam Evals (Part Two)

In part two of GBW's recap of the Henley Memorial Spiece Run N Slam All-Star Classic, we look at the performances of top 2014 target Trevon Bluiett, give another evaluation of five-star forward Kevon Looney, a big performance out of A.J. Turner, 2015 shooting guard Jalen Coleman, and more.

If you missed part one of GoBlueWolverine's Spiece evals, click here.

Trevon Bluiett, 2014 SF, Spiece Indy Heat 17’s – Bluiett came to Spiece with a chip on his shoulder and a full understanding of the teams and players he was going against at all times. We know what Trevon is capable of on the offensive end of the floor, and that didn’t change over the weekend. Bluiett can just get buckets and do so in a variety of ways. Most impressive to me is how quickly he can put up points. At the start of Sunday morning’s quarterfinal game against the Milwaukee Running Rebels, Bluiett knocked down his first four three-point attempts, all in a five-minute span to start the game. Bluiett is really dedicating himself and his body to becoming a more complete player and is proving that he can get to the rim, find other ways to be effective, even showing the ability to post up smaller defenders. But the most impressive part of the weekend came when Bluiett was guarding five-star forward Kevon Looney. This was personal for Trevon, and he did a fantastic job. Looney is so difficult to stop when he decides to go to the rim, but Bluiett rarely let it happen. His on the ball defense forced Looney into some very difficult shots, playing very physical, and often sticking his chest into the 6-9 forward. Bluiett also showed great awareness in the passing lanes, off the ball, coming up with a few steals while playing solid, led pipe defense.

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 2
    • Trevon Bluiett, SF, Spiece Indy Heat – This is a cat who can just flat out fill it up. Bluiett is one of the best shooters in the country, but he also is an excellent rebounder and someone with the savvy to know how to convert around the rim. Not an elite athlete by any stretch, Bluiett is doing a better job on the defensive end and continues to get buckets on offense. In the afternoon win over Team Thad he was spectacular and showed why he is such a priority recruit for many schools in the Midwest.

Kevon Looney, 2014 PF, Milwaukee Running Rebels 17’s – Watching five-star forward Kevon Looney play the game of basketball is just fun. His long, gangly arms offer such an advantage on both ends of the floor and he knows exactly how to utilize them. Whether it’s defending someone in the post to challenge a shot, stepping over as a help side defender for the block, or even stepping out on a guard to keep him in front of you, that extra reach, those added couple inches of length are vital. Several times during the weekend Looney just seemed to get a piece of the ball, frustrating opponents. Offensively, what can’t Looney do? Not much. But his bread and butter, and he’ll say this about himself too, is attacking the offensive glass. He’s just longer. The ball goes up on the rim and Looney just seems to wiggle his way through, either tipping it up with one hand or pulling the ball in with two hands, keeping it high, and throwing it back down. When Looney is the focal point, his handle, presence, and patience getting the basket is very mature. Seldom does he make the wrong play, either drawing contact and getting to the line, finding his teammate when help comes, or on one occasion just flying over his defender for a two-handed dunk. Looney’s jump shot is something he’s really been working on in practice and we saw a little bit of it over the weekend, even showing off a three-point shot from NBA range. If Looney can knock shots down from that far out, teams will have nightmares trying to figure out how to stop him (even though some already do).

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 3
    • Kevon Looney, PF, Milwaukee Running Rebels – The offense for Looney comes mostly through offensive rebounds and not post touches. This is no fault of Looney, just is the style of play his team uses. Looney again was very good on the glass and scored some around the rim. He didn't show too much from the perimeter in a morning loss, but played admirably and did a good job of keeping his team in the game.

A.J. Turner, 2014 SG, Dorian’s Pride 17’s – Some players tend to bring the game up a level when the competition rises, similar to how some players can play lower depending on the opponent. Saturday at Spiece, A.J. Turner was ready to play in one of the bigger games and more talented teams Dorian’s Pride would see, and he was terrific. In high school ball Turner has the ability to get to the rack and make plays for his teammates from the point guard position. In AAU, Turner is more of a perimeter oriented player and true shooting guard that can spot up on the outside and knock down shots. This was the best his shot has looked in all of the time I’ve seen him. He hit everything. Once he got his confidence going early on, he couldn’t miss, even knocking down some long jumpers off the dribble. Consistency will always be the question with Turner, but to play that well against a team like the Running Rebels, Turner’s performance jumped out.

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 1
    • A.J. Turner, SF, Dorian's Pride – Turner has a very nice looking shot, and good size for a wing. At times he can run the point, though in college that won't be his fulltime role. Also Turner showed some surprising explosion off the floor with a dunk or two. Mostly his game is shooting and being skilled with the basketball, and there is no doubt he has a lot of potential.

Jaylen Johnson, 2014 PF, Dorian’s Pride 17’s – One of my favorite guys from the weekend at Spiece simply because he plays so hard and isn’t intimidated at all. I’ve been high on Johnson since I had a chance to see him again during Ypsilanti’s high school playoff run, and this weekend only solidified my belief that he can be a high energy, off the bench, role player for many teams at the next level. Johnson’s athleticism can’t be questioned, toughness always prevalent, and his overall want to attitude, a want to get better is great to see. Activity is the name of his game and he had that every time I saw him over the weekend -- tip-ins, rebounds, blocking shots, running the floor, playing tough defense. His biggest challenge came Saturday when he matched up against five-star forward Kevon Looney and Johnson wasn’t afraid. He attacked Looney and had one of his best games of the weekend. As stated above, he’s not going to be intimidated and wasn’t offensively or defensively. The most encouraging part was seeing Johnson knock down a baseline, mid-range jumper a couple of times – if he can develop that, I have no doubt he can be a key contributor at the next level.

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 1
    • Jaylen Johnson, PF, Dorian's Pride – Just a long and athletic dude who tries to dunk everything, Johnson is a beast on the interior. He isn't a super skilled kid, but his athleticism is top notch and he attacks the rim with bad intentions. Rebounding wise he is very good and does it on both ends of the floor. Johnson has to get stronger and continue to develop a refined post game, but he has a lot of natural ability and is someone who is a threat to get a double-double every time on the floor.

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 2
    • Jaylen Johnson, PF, Dorian's Pride – A rebounding machine on the low block, Johnson did it again at a high level on Saturday. He just has that savvy for knowing where the ball is going to come off the rim and then using his long arms and strength to go get it. Johnson looks to still be growing and has a chance to really be a tough one to handle down low. Also Johnson is an excellent passer both from the high post and down low.

Jalen Coleman, 2015 SG, Indiana Elite 16’s – A scorer in the purest sense of the word. Coleman continues to do what he does best; scoring the basketball inside and outside, off the dribble or on kick outs, and has a great feel for what defenders are trying to do. Coleman is still adjusting to playing with Indiana Elite, he was on Spiece Indy Heat last year, so building some chemistry and cohesiveness with his new teammates is something he was working through. By the time Saturday night and Sunday rolled around, Coleman appeared to be very comfortable once again. He has tremendous quickness and is a deceptive athlete with great burst that opponents might not expect until he’s blowing past them. The most intriguing part of his development this weekend was how he’s handling having the ball in his hands more. Colleges, because of his size (6-3), are telling him he’ll need to be more of a combo guard, handling the ball at times and having the ability to break defenses down off the dribble, in the pick and roll, setting up teammates as well. He’s really taking that to heart and Michigan is one of the schools telling him that. I saw no reason to believe he won’t be able to progress in that area of his game as well. His jumper looked better, maybe more confident, than when I saw him with his high school team in January.

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 3
    • Jalen Coleman, SG, Indiana Elite – The biggest weapon on the squad that won the 16 and under title, Coleman was as usual shooting the ball well. He is absolutely money coming off screens and has the long arms and high release that make it so difficult to challenge his shot. Also Coleman was active on defense and showed some ability to use the dribble. Still he is at his best as a stone cold scorer, and that is exactly what he showed on Sunday.

Hyron Edwards, 2015 PG, Indiana Elite 16’s – Hyron’s body is really beginning to fill out, looking less and less like the young, fearless point guard I saw playing against Glenn Robinson’s Lake Central team two seasons ago. And he’s using the added strength and frame to his advantage. Ball handling has always been a strong portion of Edward’s game, blowing by defenders for a floater in traffic or sliding a quick pass to a teammate inside. Edwards is still a handful to try to keep in front as a defender. Consistency for Edwards is going to be huge. His outside shot has been the vital aspect of what college coaches are hoping can really come around and he’s been working at it, knocking down a few from distance. Edwards did miss a few shots from close range over the weekend, still working to find some touch around the rim.

  • From Scout.com analyst Brian Snow in Spiece: Run N Slam: Day 3
    • Hyron Edwards, PG, Indiana Elite – Edwards is an elite athlete at the point guard position, and he showed that. He got into the lane virtually whenever he wanted and then showed the ability to score. His decision making looked decent as well, and that hasn't always been the strongest part of his game. Overall Edwards is doing a pretty good job of balancing being a scorer and setting up his teammates.

Chandler White, 2015 SG, Indiana Elite 16’s – I’ve loved how hard White plays since I saw him last year around this time. At Spiece, White was still fighting through an injury that really seemed to affect him. His game is predicated on the little things -- crashing the boards, getting to the free throw line, hustle, energy -- and he always brings that to the table but it was obvious he was still working through that leg injury. One thing I loved seeing was how vocal he appeared to be with his teammates though, demanding the ball at times, and making sure his teammates were in the right spots.

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