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Monday, July 16, 2007

Kenner League Report

As we did last year, the IPB and I took in the epic Tombs vs. Clyde's match-up at McDonough this weekend. The Tombs featured Jon Wallace, Chris Wright, Vernon Macklin and Nikita Mescheriakov. Clyde's had Austin Freeman, Pat Ewing Jr., Omar Wattad, and Jeremiah Rivers. The IPB will weigh in with his thoughts but here are my preliminary assessments.

Wallace -- He was the best player on the court. His shot continues to improve and he makes great decisions, but we know what to expect from JW.

Wright -- Wright is incredibly quick and had some jaw-dropping plays. That said, he also had some sloppiness and his shot was clearly off. He will play significant minutes this year and actually complements Wallace well because of his ability to get to the hoop. As noted here earlier, he is built and can take a lot of contact and still finish.

Macklin -- Macklin was okay, but not spectacular. People who saw him play on Sunday said he was in a class by himself. This was not the case on Saturday. He was timid and just didn't assert himself all that much. He took another blow to his broken nose--ouch!

Nikita -- Nikita wowed us in warmups with his outside shot. He has great form and a beautiful rotation. I could see him getting some PT this year when teams are crowding Roy in the paint. He had a nifty bounce-pass out of a double-team and showed some ability to finish around the hoop. He won't get many minutes this year but I could see him having a significant impact as a junior or senior.

Austin -- He is efficient and deadly from deep. Austin can also finish strong around the hoop. He was quiet for most of the game but seemed to score at will when he woke up. There is no doubt that the sky is the limit for this kid.

Pat Jr. -- Pat, in contrast with the first time I saw him this summer, did not have a good game. One notable thing though is that his three-point shot is vastly improved. He will be a serious threat from beyond the arc. I suspect he will start in the Jeff Green spot this year.

Omar -- Wattad didn't show me much. He has a fine handle and is pretty physical, but his shot did not look good. He hit one three but with incredibly odd rotation on the ball. His recruitment has some scratching their heads and unlike Nikita I'm not sure he has dispelled those questions.

Rivers -- I thought Rivers played well. He game Wallace a good deal of trouble on D and was aggressive the whole game. The only gap in the game, as was the case last year, is his 3-pt show, which did not go down once in this game. That said, I like the increased aggressiveness and his ability to penetrate. He'll get some PT this year, although Chris will undoubtedly cut into it.

That's all I've got for now. The IPB will fill in more details.

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