UCLA Prospecs at Nike EYBL Hampton

The Nike Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL) got underway recently in Hampton, Virginia, and here's a look at some of the UCLA prospects that participated, including D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera, Brandon Ashley and a prospect from Cameroon...

The Nike Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL), which features the shoe company's best AAU teams playing at different locations around the country during spring, launched last weekend in Hampton, Virg.

Arnaud Moto, SF, Team Takeover – A pleasant surprise on day one, Adala Moto looked like the best player on a loaded Team Takeover squad. Orginally from Cameroon, also known as Adala-Moto, a 6-foot-5, 220-pound small forward, left his imprint on the game by locking up on defense, snagging rebounds in and out of his area and knocking down open jump shots. To top it off, he had the play of the day when he drove baseline and threw down a tough slam on a couple of CP3 defenders.

Kyle Anderson, PF, New Jersey Playaz – Watching Anderson is interesting because of how unique his game is. He has unbelievable feel for the game and just knows how to play and make others better. He is a great passer and is excellent at getting into the lane and putting up what look like impossible floaters and fade away jumpers that somehow go in. At the same time Anderson can struggle against pressure and isn't very athletic. He was good, not great, but it is the uniqueness of his game that really shows up every time you see him.

D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera, SG, Spiece – A bully with the ball, Smith-Rivera lived in the paint, as he attacked the Mo-Kan guards and finished at the rim. The 6-foot-3 guard appears to be in the best shape of his playing career and it shows. He looks quicker and had no issues blowing by defenders. In the second half, Smith-Rivera showed off his mid-range game, knocking down an array of pull-ups off the dribble. He went for 31 points and was a big reason Spiece was able to crawl up on Mo-Kan and get a win.

Day Two: There is no doubt that Smith-Rivera can score the basketball. In the mid-range there might not be a better player in the class. Also when the game is on the line late, just put the ball in his hands and give him space because he has that cold blooded quality to him. Smith-Rivera's scoring and passing helped Indy Heat recover from a big first half deficit to beat the Southern Kings.

Day Three: This kid just knows how to get buckets. Not a great athlete, Smith-Rivera has a great feel for how to get his shot off, and also has excellent touch in the mid-range and on the perimeter. Defensively he struggled some with straight line drives, but usually he is pretty good in that regard.

Brandon Ashley, PF, Oakland Soldiers – The 6-foot-8 forward is constantly adding something new to his game, and he showed a perimeter jumper on Saturday. Ashley did hit jumpers from the outside, but that also didn't preclude him from using his size, strength, and athleticism to clean the glass and control on the interior. He was a complete beast against the St. Louis Eagles and made sure that the Soldiers would roll on with his strong play. After being a role player last year, Ashley looks very comfortable being the man on this Soldiers group.

William Goodwin, PF, Memphis YOMCA – Word is that Goodwin struggled in the morning game, but in the evening he was an absolute monster. In fact, he did absolutely everything you could ever want out of a power forward. Goodwin finished above the rim with dunks, cleaned the glass, and even showed a face up game taking his man off the bounce. Simply he was a completely dominant force with his strength and size.

Anthony January, SF, ICP Portland – A product of Los Angeles, it was certainly a surprise to see this 6-foot-7 wing rolling with the squad from Oregon. After sitting out this year, January looked pretty good. He used his athleticism at the rim, attacked the basket off the dribble and even dropped in a couple of mid-range pull-ups. He will be one high-majors on the west coast will track during the evaluations periods.

*L.J. Rose's vision is one of his best attributes. His head is always up and he's alert when he brings the ball up the court where his teammates are located.

Richard Longus said Stanford, UCLA, Washington, Gonzaga, Texas, St. Mary's, California, Santa Clara, New Mexico and UNLV have shown the most interest in him at this point.

Arnaud Moto said Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, UNLV, Xavier and George Mason have offered him a scholarship. Georgetown and Maryland are also heavily involved, and UCLA is starting to show interest.

For Kyle Anderson it is Arizona, UCLA, Seton Hall, St. John's, Villanova, Xavier, and Georgetown.

Anthony January said Colorado, Washington, Oregon, Utah, San Diego State and USC are all involved in his recruitment. He said USC has offered him a scholarship. He also mentioned UCLA, but January's academics would have to improve considerably.


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