The Nike Elite Youth Basketball league made its regular season finale in the City of Angels over the weekend. With Peach Jam bids on the line, tons of star power in the building, there were a few prospects that stood out among the crowd.
Best Overall Performance: Keldon Johnson (2018/6’7/Boo Williams)
Day 1 Wrap-Up: Keldon had one of the most dominant overall performances we’ve viewed in EYBL during 2017 when Boo Williams matched up against Team Florida. Johnson would impact nearly every play of the game and finished with 18 points, 16 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks and a steal for good measure. On the perimeter, he displayed a nice looking stroke from midrange where he knocked down several shots from 16-19 feet. He also handled the ball as the playmaker out of pick and roll sets where he found teammates for easy shots. Johnson also bullied defenders to the rim off the dribble from the wing where he finished at the rim or collected his own miss for a putback. Keldon also showed great grab and go ability, there were multiple instances where he obtained defensive rebounds and pushed the ball up the court and found teammates for lobs. On defense he simply imposed his will with his non-stop motor and physicality, pulling down rebounds in traffic on several occasions. He also showed some nice helpside shotblocking ability.
Stock Prediction: Most national publications have Keldon ranked as a top 20 player nationally for 2018. He is certainly worthy of that lofty praise based on what we’ve seen live this Spring. Look for Johnson to maintain his status as an elite player this Summer.
Recruitment: Offers from a plethora of high-major programs and a few bluebloods. Per a recent interview with Rivals, Keldon plans on cutting his list down after the Summer and taking official visits based on that list. Johnson claims no leaders at this point and his recruitment will be a battle to the very end.
Breakout Performer: David Roddy (2019/6’6/Howard Pulley)
Day 1 Wrap-Up: Saturday was the first time we’ve viewed Roddy live and he was certainly a revelation. As a sophomore, he was among the best prospects we viewed all day. With the frame of a college football player, David has the skill and agility of a much smaller player. He displayed fluid ballhandling ability in the open court, where his ability to change direction at that size is uncanny. He knocked down catch and shoot triples with ease on multiple occasions as well. While Roddy is very skilled, he also put his superior strength to work. He abused defenders in the post by backing them down before creating good angles at the rim where he finished with soft touch. David averaged 14.5 points and 3 rebounds in 2 games Saturday, while shooting an amazing 73% from the field and 50% from distance.
Stock Prediction: Unranked to nearly every national publication at this point, that should change very soon. David has a ton of perimeter skill, while having the size and strength of a power forward. We look for David to put his name on the national scene this summer, as we’ve certainly taken notice.
Recruitment: Roddy currently has a single offer from North Dakota. While David is also a football prospect, we think he has a future on the hardwood if he pursues it to the fullest extent. We expect mid-major schools to offer sooner rather than later if that is the case.
Best Scorer: Ayo Dosunmu (2018/6’4/Mac Irvin)
Day 1 Wrap-Up: the Chicago area product got buckets from literally every spot on the floor Saturday and averaged 24.5 points per game during 2 games. Ayo was able to get wherever he wanted off the dribble against Houston Hoops, where he used his superior size to finish over defenders with floaters on numerous occasions. Dosunmu had a few instances where he showed really nice change of direction ballhandling and created space before knocking down perimeter jumpshots. He also scored as an off ball guard, where he was able to free himself up off of screens before connecting on both midrange jumpers and beyond the arch. He ran the floor well and scored several times in transition as he outran the defense. His combination of size, ballhandling and athletic ability as a lead guard just makes it nearly impossible to stop Ayo, even if he’s not at 100 percent physically just yet.
Stock Prediction: Dosunmu is ranked in the top 40 of every publication currently, and we see no reason for that to change. He has all the tools to be an elite lead-scoring guard at the next level and has tons of upside to go along with it.
Recruitment: An extensive offer sheet that includes high-majors from across the country. At this point Midwestern schools are making him an absolute priority, but Ayo is likely to pick up attention from bluebloods this summer once he’s back to full health. Dosunmu has no timeline for his decision and claims no leaders as of right now.
Best Passer: Jamal Bieniemy (2018/6’4/Houston Hoops)
Day 1 Wrap-Up: Jamal displayed tremendous court vision on Saturday in both games we viewed. He broke down the defense off the dribble before finding teammates for easy dumpoffs at the basket in the half-court while also pushing the ball in transition before finding teammates for open threes. What we really liked about Bieniemy is that the ball didn’t stick with him, he’s a willing passer that moved the ball ahead with the simple pass when appropriate rather than pounding the ball when not necessary or efficient. His vision was clearly the best attribute on Day 1, but he also scored the ball really well. Jamal averaged 11 points over 2 games Saturday, while shooting 69% from the floor. Considered a combo-guard to most, but we really like him as a big point guard. He has superb ballhandling skills and flourishes in high ball screen situations where he has the option to distribute or score.
Stock Prediction: Sitting somewhere between 100-125 by a few services and unranked by a few others, we fully expect Jamal to be a universal top 100 prospect by the end of the Summer. His combination of size, speed, ballhandling, vision and upside make him among the top players in the country at this point.
Recruitment: Bieniemy committed to Oklahoma in early May, and that is a huge pickup for the Sooners.
Best Shooter: Marcus Zegarowski (2018/6’2/Expressions Elite)
Day 1 Wrap-Up: The sharpshooting point guard dropped 6 triples on his way to 20 points in a huge victory against crosstown rival BABC that helped Expressions Elite lock up a Peach Jam bid. The best attribute about Zegarowski’s shooting prowess is that he isn’t limited to being a catch and shoot prospect that stands in a corner. He knocked down threes in every way possible – off the dribble, coming off screens, in transition, with the shot clock running down – you name it and he did it. Marcus is a top 10 shooter in the country, as he has a quick release, good arch, consistent mechanics and hits highly contested shots. He must be face-guarded out to 28 feet or the opposition will most certainly pay the price. The thing that most people don’t realize is that Marcus is also a very solid point guard with a nice handle that creates shots for teammates.
Stock Prediction: Zegarowski is ranked a generic 2 or 3 star to several publications as of right now, but he will certainly be ranked among the Endless Motor Sports top 150 when initial 2018 rankings are released in June. We first identified Marcus in April during EYBL session 2 as a stockriser and his play has only solidified our lofty opinion of him. He’s one of the better point guard prospects in the country in our opinion.
Recruitment: Marcus is in the middle of the proverbial blowup, as he’s received offers from Rutgers, Pitt, Creighton, Penn State, Minnesota, Washington and Arizona State within the past month alone. We fully expect more high-majors to offer later this summer during the July evaluation period.