On Saturday we headed down I-71 south to check out the action at the Sports 4 Courts’ MLK Tournament. As far as MLK tournaments go, the team and individual talent was impressive, as teams from as far as St Louis and Chicago made the trek to the Cincinnati suburb. Not only were there a number of very talented players, we were treated to several very competitive games. Of course, there were the requisite blowouts with super teams like the 2027 R4L Pioneers, 2029 BNU 2029, Let it Fly Elite and Bates Fundamental in the building, but for the opening day competition, we were very pleased. Of note was the presence of Terry Holt and his T3TV platform documenting the action and keeping the building hyped!
Let’s start with some of the standouts we saw on Saturday. Jerry Easter II (6’3”/PG/2025/Toledo) is an absolute monster, and he did just about anything he wanted on to on Saturday. Easter consistently finished at the rim, pulled up for jumpers and face virtually no resistance doing so. He’s also a 3-level scorer and looks a bit more explosive. He looks to have grown and bulked up a since the last time we saw him, looking every bit the part of a high major prospect. Although he already has a handful D-I offers, the best is yet to come in terms of his recruitment. In fact, this kid could go all the way with continued growth and development! Speaking of big-time athletes, Cory Sadler (5’9”/PG/2027/Chicago, IL) was quite impressive on day I. Blessed with a big body, Sadler is a bully as he drives to the basket where he finishes through contact consistently. He also works well in transition, possess solid passing skills and gets it done defensively, both on-ball and playing passing lanes. Jesiah Buchanan, (5’5″/CG/2028/St.Louis, MO) had a solid day. He has good size for his position, has a solid handle, and is a bucket getter. Good going to the cup or knocking down jumpers.
You know the old saying, “good things come in small packages.” Well, Angelo Adams (4’8”/PG/2028/Chicago, IL) proves the point, as this diminutive PG lit it up on Saturday to the tune of 25 points in a game we watched. Lighting quick, Adams stayed in the paint as he consistently probed the defense for driving lanes. A true floor general, Adams can also score that rock. He’s confident, plays with swager, and does great with changing speed and direction. One of the best shooters we saw all day was Robert Crews (5’0”/PG/2025/Lansing, MI), who kept his team in a game we watched with his ability to knock down treys from beyond the arc. We saw Adams convert multiple three pointers (at least 4) and looked comfortable doing so.
The BNU Crew, Colton Clevenger (4’5”/PG/2029/Lewisburg), William Peagler Jr. (4’9”/PG/2029/Trotwood), Andrew Woeste (5’0”/WG/2029/Dayton) and Jayden Davis (5’2/WF/2029/Dayton) were all ballin again as their nationally ranked team was dominating the competition. All 4 players are highly skilled, understand the game and should be early contributors to a high school team in a few years. We have to give a special shout out to Davis who we’ve under appreciated until Saturday’s performance. Big, strong, physical and skilled best describes Davis’ game. Once he gets downhill, few defenders are strong enough to stop him. Davis is built like a linebacker and uses his bulky frame to finish through contact. Oh yea, we have to mention Terry Holt III (2031/PG/Dayton), who was playing up with BNU and looking more comfortable competing against kids 2 years older than himself. Despite his size disadvantage, Holt gets to his spots, can’t be turned over, and defends at a high level. We’ve all seen his T3TV mixtapes, and trust me, they don’t lie!
R4L Elite 2027 is no joke, as their roster is well built and full of studs. Blessed with excellent guard play from LaShawn Hill, Chris Washington, Jushua Tyson and Jashawn Coffey, R4L has ample scoring, play making ability and defensive pressure. We already knew the R4L guards all could play, but we were surprised just how good Amir Phillips (5’6”/PF/2027/Cincinnati) and Bryce Curry (5’9”C/2027/Cincinnati) were. Both have good length, are athletic and finish near the rim at a high clip. Both also run the floor well, provide adequate rim protection and should be solid prospects going forward. The same can be said for Kamron Mercer (5’7”/WF/2027/Cincinnati), who was supper impressive with his size, skill set and fluidity. We saw Mercer coming off picks knocking down treys and making plays driving and dishing. We also liked Mercer’s floor general, Brady Bowman (4’11”/PG/2028/Cincinnati), who was playing up against 6th graders and absolutely getting the job done. Bowman is a scrappy and hard-nosed PG with a excellent skill set.
Drew lavender’s Buckeye State Elite squad is well constructed with backcourt talent and size in the post. Albert Moore, Sammy Dari and Landon Evans hold down at the guard position, while Antwon Pollard, Jeffery Reynolds and Sydney Mobley patrol the paint. All six players showed flashes of greatness on Saturday. Below is a more complete list of the day I standouts we saw. We hope to make the trip back down to Cincinnati for championship Sunday. Finally, a number of the standouts will be attending our March 13th Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase. Don’t forget to follow us @robt1.