What I liked: Corey Evans from NBPA Top 100 Wednesday
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. — The first day of the prestigious NBPA Top 100 Camp did not lack for standout performances from some of the top prospects in attendance like five-star Precious Achiuwa. There was much to appreciate but what I really liked was...
...Precious Achiuwa's newfound mentality
There is no debating the raw talent and abilities with Precious Achiuwa. However, the dilemma surrounding the five-star is around his decision making as he sometimes tries to be a ballhandling wing rather than a hard playing, energy giving small ball power forward. He was the latter on Wednesday night and boy, was Achiuwa impressive. The Rudy Gay comparisons haven’t stopped and his athleticism, length and finishing skills aren’t far off where Achiuwa was the star of the night, backing up his claim as a five star prospect. Watch for UConn here as the Huskies have come on of late.
...Anthony Harris' defense
While his offense comes along, four-star Anthony Harris has not backed off on the defensive end. Indiana offered on Tuesday and he showed just why some of basketball’s top name brand programs have become involved. A lock down perimeter defender and arguably the top on-ball guy in the 2019 class, Harris should have no issues leaving an imprint on whichever college program he ultimately chooses. While most rely on their offense to contribute, Harris knows where his bread is buttered as he should be seen as an ace of a defender that competes his tail off on each and every possession.
...Isaiah Jackson's shot blocking skills
Lately, we have written a lot about Isaiah Jackson but wow, they just don’t make many like the freak of defender that he is. His rim protecting abilities are as good as you’re going to find but it’s also his ability to exchange ends and directions that makes him such a valuable pawn on the defensive end. He can switch every position and changes every shot around the basket, too. Jackson is a problem, one that was a major dilemma felt by his opposition on Wednesday night.
...KJ Martin's explosiveness
He may be a bit undersized in the frontcourt but the tenacity and physicality that Kenyon Martin Jr. brings to the floor is no laughing matter. The southpaw ramped things up from the tip on Wednesday with a thunderous dunk in the lane, displaying shades of his dad in his prime. He might not be the well known talent that his father Kenyon Martin was, but there is always a need and role for someone in the mold of Martin, a ferocious finisher that could find a niche within a high major program.
...Will Baker's response
Five-star junior Will Baker hasn't hidden from the fact that his spring was a bit up and down in terms of performance, but with his legs back underneath him, Baker showed just why he is such a heavily coveted prospect. The lefty knocked down a perimeter jumper, hit a turnaround jumper out of the high post and then a sky hook within a matter of minutes. He plays with a toughness and an edge about him that is hard to find in bigs nowadays. Texas, UNC, UCLA, Kansas and Texas A&M are just a few that have placed a priority on him as he played the part of a top of the line frontline prospect on Thursday.
...Keon Johnson's freaky athleticism
There are athletes and then there are kids like Keon Johnson. The rising junior wing out of Tennessee put on his leaping shoes in Virginia, throwing down highlight reel dunks but also using his instincts to come up with out of area, LeBron James-like track down shot blocks. He does have to better his half court skillset and jumper game but his abilities in the open floor and as a versatile wing defender is as good as it gets. In the 2020 class, expect for the entire SEC to make the freak athlete a priority.
...Alonzo Gaffney's potential
The talent level and upside with Alonzo Gaffney is undeniable. There aren’t many with the length, fluidity, versatility and athleticism of the Ohio State bound forward. He does have to bring greater consistency to the floor but on Wednesday, it was all there. He was vocal on both ends, defended three positions, knocked down catch and shoot jumpers and finished with authority in the lane. Keita Bates-Diop is out the door this spring and while it will be a one year hiatus in Columbus from someone in his mold, Gaffney could be the ideal replacement a year from now as Chris Holtmann has a good one coming his way.