MEQUON, Wisc - It was a big finale to the NY2LA Summer Jam for Thon Maker. The five-star proved his worth and showed off his massive skill set.
Class of 2015
, SF, Team Loaded – Barkley is a bit of the unknown for Team Loaded and when he performs like he did on Sunday that is when they become extremely difficult to deal with. Barkley was an absolute beast going to the rim and finishing. He plays with an elite motor, rebounds, and is a solid athlete. On Sunday he was knocking in shots from the mid-range, and when that happens he is very tough to deal with.
Donnell Gresham, SG, Wisconsin United – The Minnesota native was huge in helping United get to the title game. At the end of the semi-finals he hit a huge three to take the lead and then got a big steal to seal the game. In the finals he showed a solid ability to handle and is good enough to get into the mid-range. Right now he is slightly under the radar, but with his ability to score and toughness more interest should begin coming his way.
Marshawn Wilson, SG/SF, Wisconsin United – Wilson is one of the tougher wings in the country. He is a good athlete who is always in attack mode. Wilson showed off a pretty good handle and proved that he has the ability to score out to the mid-range He looked capable as a shooter, though that didn’t seem to be his thing. Wilson could be a popular target going forward to the final evaluation period.
Class of 2016
, C/PF, Team Loaded – It was a big finale for Maker who put his entire skill set on display. He ended an epic championship game with an emphatic dunk with 1 second to go, and that was just the icing on the cake. His block near the end preserved a precarious lead, he rebounded well, and also showed a unique ability to handle the basketball for a player his size. Overall it was a tremendous day for Maker and he has a signature performance of the event in the emotionally charged finale.
, SG, Team Loaded – Jones no doubt had an impressive event and his performance in the title game was key. He scored near 20 points and looked the part of a true combo guard who can make plays. Jones is an excellent shooter, a very good athlete, and is very good when going to the rim. He needs to improve his handle, but his ability to score is big time.
, SF, Atlanta Celtics – The Celtics looked out of gas in a morning loss to Team Loaded, but Blackwell did his part to show that he is a very good player. Blackwell was hitting from deep early, and then he got to the rim and made a few plays that well. He seems to be getting more explosive every year, and showed an impressive ability to rebound for someone who makes his home on the wing.
Class of 2017
, PF/C, Team Loaded – He can get a little out of control at times, but Maker brings a lot to the table. He plays hard every single possession, blocks shots, and shows a good skill level in the mid-range. Maker has to continue to get stronger and learn when to attack and when to just reverse the ball, but there is no denying his natural talent and he continues to make an impact at the 17 and under level.
Joseph St. Pierre, C, Wisconsin Playground Warriors – St. Pierre is absolutely huge, has good hands, and a nice scoring touch. For such a young kid at his size he runs the floor very well, and is a solid area rebounder. He needs to watch his body and continue to get into better shape, but there is some major potential here and he showed it in a solid win.
Adam Smith, SG, Wisconsin Playground Warriors – Smith is a solid 6-foot-2 or so and has a nice shooting stroke. He looked to be at his best in catch and shoot situations, yet at the same time showed some ability off the bounce in the mid-range. He isn’t a great athlete yet, but he seemed to move his feet decently on the perimeter and definitely will be one to watch going forward.
Justin Smith, SF, Playground Elite – High school teammates with Jalen Brunson
, Smith doesn’t get a ton of attention, but his skill level, size, and athleticism mean he is definitely one to monitor. Smith had a good game scoring inside and out, and showed a good motor as well. Overall it was impressive to see, and he has improved since a solid showing during the spring.
Faces in the crowd
had an assistant tracking Thon Maker all day long.