VUSports caught two Nike EYBL games in Hampton this morning:
This first game was a 65-59 win by City Rocks over Team Final. Villanova Assistant Coach Kyle Neptune and Duke's Coach K were at center court to watch Cameron Reddish lead Team Final. Reddish did not disappoint - he scored 25 points (9-23 FG, 4-6 FT, and 3-10 3PFG), grabbed 17 rebounds, dished out 3 assists, blocked one shot and turned it over once. He didn't get enough support out of Louis King in this one to get Team Final over the top. Reddish has a great skill package for a player with his length and size. He is a good shooter from beyond the arc but has a tendency to get over-confident and let some particularly long attempts fly at times when the team could use perhaps a better look at the basket. With a long stride and good quickness, Reddish floats around the court to rebound well out of his area, deflect passes and often poke the ball loose from behind on unsuspecting ball handlers. Reddish has a break down handle he can use to get to the rim, he can pull up from mid-range, knock down floaters and he is a solid FT shooter. He certainly has the look of a player who will make only a brief pit stop at the college level before heading to the NBA. It is quite possible that Villanova will stock up on players prior to Reddish making a college selection. The suspicion is that if there is playing time available at Duke for him that he will end up a Devil.
Matthue Cotton hit 2-7 3PFG on his way to 10 points, 3 assists, and 3 rebounds for Team Final. He has a good all-around game but is perhaps a notch below what the Cats will be looking for on the wing from in the Class of 2018.
For the City Rocks, Joseph Girard III was 0-4 from beyond the arc and 2-2 from the line for a total of two points. Girard hasn't played on the EYBL Circuit long and he comes with a reputation as a guy who can really fill the pail - but questions about his lack of length, foot speed and size will likely limit his recruitment somewhat.
The second game we caught today was Team Takeover losing at the hands of Team CP3, 80-67. Villanova prospect, Jalen Smith had a good outing with 12 points (4-4 FTs and 4-6 FGs), 5 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 block and 3 turnovers in 25 minutes. Smith has a habit of making his way around the court running half and three-quarter steps - which masks the speed with which he is capable of going end-to-end across the court when he really gets out and sprints in transition. He can get up and down the floor with the guards when he opens it up. Smith needs to add some strength to help him keep from being knocked off the ball or stripped of it as frequently as he does. He is a very good positional rebounder and he has good court sense. Smith demonstrated the ability to both be effective scoring in the low post and kicking the ball out to shooters from the low post. His mobility would certainly allow him to be effective playing the type of switching man-to-man defenses that Jay Wright prefers. Smith can guard multiple positions with ease. On the wing for Team Takeover is another Villanova target - Brandon Slater. Slater had 10 points on an efficient 4-8 from the floor and 2-4 from three-point range. Slater didn't show much in the way of creating off the bounce, but he does have a good feel for the game as a passer in the half-court - he frequently gives up a decent shot in favor of making the extra pass to set up a teammate for a better look. It isn't all that common for players in the high visibility sneaker events to give up open shots in favor of play.
In other games in Hampton:
The PSA Cardinals edged Spiece Indy Heat, 58-56. Other than a 1-6 shooting performance beyond the arc, Cole Anthony had a strong outing with 16 points, 8 assists, 4 rebounds and 4 steals in 27 minutes. Hammer Wright scored 5 points and grabbed 3 boards in 17 minutes while Jake Forrester posted 4 points, 2 rebounds and a block in only 10 minutes of action.
Jalen Carey poured in a game-high, 17 points (6-15 FG, 2-3 FT, 3-6 3PFG) in 25 minutes in a losing cause for Playaz Club as they fell, 68-54 to All Ohio Red.
Cole Swider finished off a strong weekend with a 22 point (9-15 FG, 2-3 FT, 2-5 3PFG), 13 rebound, 3 block performance in a BABC win over Team Melo despite 13 points from Noah Locke and 11 from Brendan Adams.