Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Best of the Pangos Spring Showcase
By Joel Francisco
CERRITOS, Calif. -- It wasn't penciled in on my original schedule, but the Pangos Spring Showcase at Cerritos College this past weekend was the right way to catapult into club basketball season. Ryan Silver, the director of Pangos Elite Basketball, did an outstanding job combining skill-set workouts with a number of high-level scrimmages.
There were a bevy of standouts throughout the day, but it would be hard to find a more dominant performer than ESPN 60 wing Stanley Johnson (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei). Here were all the best performances from the Pangos Spring Showcase.
ESPN 60 SF Stanley Johnson dominated the competition at the Pangos All-American camp.
Stanley Johnson (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei)
2014, SF, 6-6, 225
Status: Johnson plans on meeting with newly hired coaches Steve Alford (UCLA) and Andy Enfield (USC), as well as Steve Fisher (San Diego State). First and foremost, what stood out the most is that Johnson basically led a squad reminiscent of the LeBron-era Cleveland Cavs to two impressive victories. He literally did everything for his team and impacted the game in a variety of ways, especially on the offensive end. His 3-point stroke was effortless and feathery throughout the day, and he attacked the rim with his Ron Artest-like frame with a vengeance.
Chimezie Metu (Lawndale, Calif./Lawndale)
2015, PF, 6-9, 215
Status: UConn, UCLA, USC, Oregon, Washington, Northwestern, Arizona, San Diego State and Long Beach State are involved. While the aforementioned Johnson was dominant throughout at this event, I don't think he'll soon forget getting dunked on by the up-and-coming Metu. Metu may be the most physically gifted big regardless of class in the Southern California region, and his upside is off the charts. He possesses all the physical intangibles (bounce, great feet, long arms and good hands) to be a multi-dimensional 4-man at the next level. If he is willing to continue to dedicate himself to the fundamentals (such as keeping the ball high), refining his inside-out game and playing with a killer instinct (playing through contact), he could be special.
Jeremy Hemsley (La Verne, Calif./Damien)
2015, SG, 6-2, 160
Status: Arizona, Boston College, Portland, SMU, Pepperdine, UCLA, USC, Washington, UTEP and Arizona State are involved. Hemsley is a high-energy prospect who has the intangibles to play both guard spots at the next level. He'll rebound, lead the break and he has an uncanny ability to find ways to the rim. He can score in a variety of ways (runners, floaters, pull-ups) and can use either hand. He can also knock down the 3-point shot, but his consistency needs to improve.
Joe Furstinger (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif./Santa Margarita)
2014, PF, 6-9, 215
Status: Washington State, Gonzaga, St. Mary's, Colorado, Oregon, USC, Arizona State, Arizona, Portland and San Francisco are involved. Furstinger is one of the most improved bigs out West. His footwork is solid and he understands angles while scoring in the paint. However, the most impressive aspect of his game at this event was his passing acumen. He made excellent decisions and showed high IQ in the open court with his pinpoint deliveries, as well as in the half-court set. He needs to improve his strength -- he gets pushed around in the paint -- but his development has been impressive.
Best Point Guard
Kendall Small (Huntington Beach, Calif./Ocean View)
2015, PG, 6-0, 165
Status: Gonzaga, Portland, Arizona, Arizona State, USC, Washington, Washington State, UTEP and San Francisco have shown significant interest. Small is a strong point guard who affects the game at both ends. He has a solid burst in transition and utilizes his strength in the paint to finish through contact. He advances the ball well in transition, and although he is a quality scorer his facilitating has improved, especially in the half-court set. However, what separates him from most point guards is his ability to be a disruptive force on the defensive end.
Jefferey McClendon (Pasadena, Calif./Pasadena)
2015, SG, 6-2, 185 At this stage, there isn't a player out West who plays with more tenacity at the defensive end than McClendon. His offensive skills (ball-handling and jump shot) need polishing, but due to his athleticism and relentless play he is evolving into quite the glue-type player. His on-ball pressure is impressive, although he gets too aggressive (chest to shoulder bump) at times. In addition, he'll have the occasional chase-down block as well.
ESPN 100 prospect Trey Kell has developed into the best wing in the West.
Trey Kell (San Diego/St. Augustine)
2014, SF, 6-3, 185
Status: San Diego State, San Diego, UC Davis and UC Irvine have offered. Colorado, Colorado State, Pepperdine, Washington and Nevada are also involved. If coaches are looking for one of the most gifted scorers in the West Coast 2014 class, they should look no farther than the silky-smooth Kell, who can score at all three levels due to his skill set and scoring savvy. His 3-point shot is feathery and he is deceptively crafty off the bounce. He isn't the quickest or the fastest prospect, but you would be hard-pressed to find a more skilled wing in California.
Best Intangibles, Part I
Ountae Campbell (Los Angeles/Brentwood)
2015, SF, 6-5, 180 Campbell is a rangy glue-type player who makes an impact on every possession. He uses his length, athleticism and savvy to affect the outcome of possessions in a positive way. Defensively, he can guard multiple positions due to his long arms, active hands and anticipation. He has a nose for the ball and gets most of his points off slashing drives, put-backs and transition. Once his half-court ball skills and fundamentals (playing on balance and being a triple threat) improve, he is a likely solid Division I recruit.
Best Intangibles, Part II
Luke Selway (Villa Park, Calif./Villa Park)
2014, SF, 6-5, 180 Selway will not blow you away with explosive moves, but he'll catch your eye with his savvy for the game. He plays with maximum effort at both ends and his IQ for the game is off the charts. Whether it's grabbing rebounds in traffic, leading the break or getting in the passing lane for a timely steal, Selway is that type of prospect. His jump shot is decent, but it needs to improve to garner solid Division I interest.
Most Improved, Part I
Colin Bell (North Hollywood, Calif./Campbell Hall)
2015, PF, 6-7, 210 Bell has improved dramatically in the past year. He has a solid-looking frame with decent length and good hands. He is a blue-collar type who grinds it out in the paint, yet he has the finesse to knock in mid-range jump shots. In addition, he can fill the lane in transition and finish above the rim.
Most Improved, Part II
Balsa Dragovic (Montebello, Calif./Cantwell Sacred Heart)
2015, PF, 6-7, 190 Dragovic is a finesse 4-man who possesses a solid skill set for being so young. He has solid length and plays with purpose. Despite his sleek frame, he will battle for boards and his post game is slowly coming together. At this stage he projects as a stretch 4 with his ability to shoot the deep ball. He should be an ideal player in a motion offense where he can utilize the screen (pick and pop) to release his shot.
Most Significant Upside, Part I
Justin Moore (San Diego/San Marcos)
2016, PG, 6-2, 155 Rangy frame, explosive off the bounce and uncanny vision describe this evolving point guard prospect. Moore has great size for the 1, and with added strength he'll only get better. In the open court he can weave in and out of traffic while dissecting the defense, and he has the vision to make nifty passes in the tightest of situations. Once his jump shot comes around, he should mold into a high-level Division I point guard.
Most Significant Upside, Part II
Jeremiah Headley (Redondo Beach, Calif./Redondo Union)
2015, SF, 6-5, 195 Headley has improved immensely, and you can see his confidence blooming at an amazing rate. He has a prototypical high-level frame with great length, and he can literally elevate over the top of his defender in transition. Although his mid-range jump shot is pretty tight, he still needs to continue to improve his 3-point stroke by getting on balance to take his game to another level.
Leland Green (Redondo Beach, Calif./Redondo Union)
2016, SG, 6-2, 165 Green has a lengthy frame that is quite chiseled. He plays at warp speed (explosive athlete) on both ends and is a menace to stop in the open court. He can get to the rim with the best of them, and his passing is underrated. However, his mid-range handling skills, fundamentals (plays too fast) and jump shot (flat release) need significant improvement.