|J. Ray, T. Williams, J. Harvey, D. Hudson, C, Charleston, T. Miller, D. Scott, G. Dexter, J. Edmonds|
Much like day 1, Sunday’s action convinced us that the NYBL is absolutely loaded across the board, both in terms of team and individual talent. In teams of team performance, 9 teams rolled out of the DMV with unblemished records. In the 8th grade division, the undefeated teams included: New World, Butler Elite, Team Rio, and Philly Triple Threat. The 7th grade appeared to be a little more rugged, as only the Oakland Soldiers and Team Durant finished a 5-0. The five 6th grade teams with perfect records were New World, Team Takeover, S Elite Bmores Finest and the West Coast All-Stars. Although not perfect, a 4-1 record in the NYBL is still very impressive. Eleven teams fit this category including: Team Teague, Garner Road Bulldogs, D.C. Premier, Metro Flyers, Bmores Finest, Team Florida and Team Charlotte in the 2019 division, while Team Takeover, RIP City, West Coast All-Stars, San Diego Select and God First Crusaders represented in 2020, and S. Elite and the Oakland Soldiers got it done for the 6th graders.
Team Takeover 2021 not only finished 5-0 for the weekend, but they did it in convincing fashion, winning each of the 5 games by double digits. The closet game they had was against CBC Elite who kept the margin of victory to 12 points. Team Takeover is powered by a core of players including Trevor Keels (5’11/W/PF/2021/Clinton, MD), Kino Lilly (5’2/PG/2021/Glendale, MD), EJ Speight (6’3/C/2021/MD), Rodney Rice (5’4/P/SG/2021/Clinton, MD) and Darius Johnson (5’5/PG/2021/Germantown, MD). Keels is considered the primary scorer on a loaded squad as evidenced by his multiple 20 point games. Lilly is described as a natural PG who can dominate a game without scoring.
Takeover is not the only 2021 team that ran the table in session I; New World also flexed their muscles and dominated the competition. New World is paced by Jaylen Hall (5’7/WF/2021/Glen Arden, MD), Elijah Hawkins (4’11/PG/2021/Washington DC) and Julian Ellerby (5’9/WF/2021/Washington DC). New World excels in transition and any of the players can rebound the ball and push it up the court. Hall is impacts the game in every aspect. Big, strong and finishes is how most observers describe Hall’s game. Hawkins handles the PG duties and Ellerby is represents a key piece to the puzzle
The West Coast All-Stars made the trek out east and proved that the left coast can play ball as well, despite the “East Coast Bias.” Mike Morris’ squad blew through the field, winning by double digits in all 5 games. The “man” on that team is Latrelle Moore (5’11/PF/2021/Houston, TX) who jumps out the gym with his elite athleticism. Tryone Washington (5’7/P/SG/2021/Tempe, AZ) did double duty this past weekend, playing up and down on the program’s 2020 and 2021 teams. Washington is a load in 2020, but in 2021 he’s a problem! Dynamic, crafty and vision are Washington’s strengths. Recardo Sarmiento (5’7/SG/2021/Phoenix, AZ), Jaden Jones (5’8/P/SG/2021/Dallas, TX), Brandon Perez (6’0/W/PF/2021/LA, CA) and Chris Page (6’1/C/2021/LA, CA) all contribute to the depth of this team. The West Coast All-Stars play a fast-paced, run and gun style play that takes advantage of easy scoring opportunities. According to Head coach Mike Morris, “the league [NYBL] was loaded with talent last year, but this year there are even more competitive teams.”
We would be remiss if we did not mention possibly the best game of the day on Sunday. It’s NYBL policy to match-up the best teams as often as possible. To that end, Team Texas, serving as a fill in team for the Arkansas Soldierz, was matched up with D.C. Premier in a showcase game at the end of the day on Sunday. As expected, the game was a dogfight from the tip to the final horn. The 2 heavy weights traded body blows the entire contest. D.C. Premier seemed to hold the lead for most of the game, but it was never really by more than a couple of buckets. Premiere led 16-11 after the 1st quarter and went into halftime up 27-22. DC was still up 41-37 to start the finial period and would go on to win 50-53. We knew he was tough, but some of the stuff Marvin Price was doing was high major stuff. Strong, athletic and skilled best describes Price. Oh yea, Price dropped a game-high 18 points in the game. Makhi Mitchell deserves some credit as he not only served as rim protector; he also seemed to finish everything near the rim to the tune of 16 points. Christian Depollar added 7 points. As was the case the entire session, Team Texas’ guard play was phenomenal! In our opinion, Chris Harris, De’vion Harmon and Tyrese Maxey are all future high major D-I guards. All three have D-I size, skill and IQ. Harris and Maxey both finished with 13 points, while Harmon and Grant Sherifield finished with 9 points.
|M. Price, M. Mitchell, B. James, D. OdomS. Cooper, M. Moreno, J. Pugh, Z. Graham & J. Springer|
We were extremely excited about all of the “Fresh Faces” faces that have entered into the league and we look forward to introducing the new talent to the world. We saw him lighting it up on Saturday then he did it again on Sunday. Krim Caulibaly (6’7/C/2019/Temple Hill, MD) is a star in the making. The NYBL is accustom to introducing the next great thing to world, now we give you Caulibaly. Great size, athleticism and an amazing skill set for an 8th grader. We are already thinking high major potential. We also wrote about Isaac Okoro (6’3/PF/2020/Atlanta, GA) in our day 1 recap, but the more we watched hoop and looked at the scorebooks the more impressive Okoro appeared. Yes he’s big, aggressive and can handle the rock, but Okoro is a scoring machine! In fact, it appears that Okoro went for at least 20 points in 3 of the 5 games he played, and was the leading scorer for the session. The league is known to find and make stars, well Okoro could be one of the next big names to come out of the NYBL!
Jacob Ray (6’5/WF/2019/LA, CA) caught our eye on day 2. Ray runs the floor well for his size, has a high motor and finishes at a high rate around the cup. Teamed up with the dynamic EJ Jackson (5’6/PG/2019/CA), who is an absolute wizard with the rock, the West Coast Stars is a great addition to the NYBL. Jackson’s national reputation is unquestioned as is his ability to create easy shots for his teammates. Justin McKoy (6’3/WF/2019/Cary, NC) caught our eye this weekend and could be another star in the making. Equipped with a big frame, a soft touch and an aggressive disposition, McKoy could be mentioned among the best by the time the league finals roles around in Columbus in June.
We did not see much of him, but what we did see of Jamahri Harvey (6’2/SG/2019/Fayetteville, NC) we really liked! Clearly, Harvey has a nice frame and loads of athleticism. We plan to take a closer look at Harvey at session II in Richmond. E1T1 2020 only finished 2-3 in session I, but Leonard Manuel is worth keeping an eye on. Blessed with good size and explosiveness, Manuel could end up being one of the best players in a loaded 2020 division. His teammate, Gervon Dexter (6’6/C/2020/Lakewales, FL) is a raw talent, but his body, motor and explosiveness are off the charts. The kid plays above the rim, tries to block everything, while making it near impossible for his opponents to finish near the rim. As his skill set catches up with his freak athleticism (and he doesn’t decide to stick with football), Dexter has next level potential. CJ Charleston (5’9/WF/2020/Cleveland) was a surprise find. The more we watched him the more we appreciated his game. Charleston stayed in the paint and finished in traffic near the rim. He’s not just a slasher; Charleston can drain the 3 ball as well. Case in point, Charleston dropped a 20 spot in a game on Saturday.
|L. Moore, D. Booker, J. Blackmon, M. Branham, C. Furst, N. Peeples, W. Sizer, D. Henry & C. Houston|
Although we know him well from his affiliation with All-Ohio Red the last couple of years, Noah Peeples is new to the NYBL. In DC, Peeoples was a dominant force for his EBA Hoops team. Although he has played closer to the basket over the past couple of years, Peeples’ game is evolving and he is now more than comfortable playing a guard position. In the class of 2021, Peeples is a big guard with a solid handle who can get his team buckets. Case in point, in the game against Team Durant, Peeples exploded for 21 points. The Truth’s Devon Fox (5’10/SG/2019/Cleveland, OH) really impressed us with his tenaciousness, elite handle, athleticism and ability to finish. When we saw him, Fox was in complete attack mode and showed he can also knock down the perimeter shot. Fox went for 17 points against the Lexington Hustle. We’ve seen Jalen Blackmon (5’7/PG/2021/Ft. Wayne, IN) before and predicted he would follow in his older brother’s footsteps and play high major ball. The Younger Blackmon does not do much of the elite showcase and camp circuit, so he is not yet a household name; however, he has a special talent. Blackmon has the ability to score on all three levels, is smart with the rock, finds open teammates and makes few mistakes.
We already listed Balsa Koprovica (7’0/C/2019/FL) as a standout out in out day 1 recap, and we should have mentioned that he is still clearly elite and should be playing in the NBA in a few years. What we did not mention is the fact the Bryan Sanders (6’0/SG/2019/FL) is still a threat to put up big numbers. In the game against GPU Steel Rivers, Sanders exploded for 20 points. He simply could not be prevented from getting into the paint and finishing. We did not see him on Saturday, but what we saw of Team Takeover’s Terrence Williams (6’4/WF/2020/D.C) on Sunday convinced us he is still among the top 5 players in the class of 2020. Williams’ combination of size and skill makes him tough to guard around the bucket. Not only can he score in the paint, Williams is equipped with a jumper if left unguarded. Drake Booker (5’9/WF/2021/Las Vegas) is the engine that drives the Oakland Solders. The super smooth wing has a mature game and an advanced skill set.
Any time a player can put up 20 plus points on a team he has to have something to work with and deserves to be highlighted. We did not catch them all, but some of the players included in the “20 Point Club” include: Krim Coulibaly (2019 New World); Isaac Okoro-3 (2019 AOT); Bryan Antoino-3 (2019 Team Rio); Chris Harris Jr. (2019 Team Texas); Alec Prfiem-2 (2019 SWO Elite); Balsa Koprivica (2019 Team Florida); Jacob Ray (2019 West Coast Stars); James Bishop (2019 Bmores Finest); Evan Prater (2019 SWO Elite); Joey Edmonds (2019 SWO Elite); Sharife Cooper (2019 AOT); Joshua Nickelberry (2019 Team Loaded), Devon Fox (2019 The Truth); Dieblo Stewart (2019 Lexington Hustle); Malik Anderson; Zion Harmon (2010 Oakland Soldiers); Kyree Walker-4 (2020 Oakland Soldiers); Matt Allocco (2020 Mid-Ohio Pumas); Jack Pugh (2020 Mid-Ohio Pumas); AJ Hoggard (2020 Team Durant); CJ Charleston (2020 OBC); Kobe (LNU) (2020 E1T1), Shemar Morrow (2020 Oakland Soldiers); M. Land (2020 SWO Elite); K. Wright (2020 GPU Steel Rivers); Makhi White (2020 GHITP); Ish Leggett (2020 Team Takeover); Dwon Odom (2020 Worldwide); Julian Thomas (2020 Team Final Red); Trevor Keels (2021 Team Takeover); Latrelle Moore (2021 West Coast All-Stars); Jalen Blackmon (2021 Team Teague); Noah Peeoples (2021 EBA Hoops); J. Paz (Team Final Red 610ers) and Sam Alamata (2021 DC United).
2019: Jacob Ray-West Coast Stars, Jamahri Harvey-Fayetteville Elite; Donte Scott-Philly Triple Threat; Tristan Miller-CBC/Havoc; EJ Jackson-West Coast Stars; Devon Fox-The Truth, Bryce Waller-The Truth; Demonte Hudson-Butler Elite; Jordan McKay-Team Rio; Tariq Ingraham-Team Rio; Caleb McReed-CBC/Havoc; Malik Anderson-New World; DJ Horne-Garner Road Krim Caulibaly-New World; Evan Prater-SWO Elite; Ed Sanchez-Metro Flyers; Dejourn Cook-Metro Flyers; John Wilson-Metro Flyers. 2020: Jason Harris-West Coast All-Stars; Marvin Davies-King James; Chris Mayfield-Mid-Ohio Pumas; Cameron McCreory-Mid-Ohio Pumas; CJ Charleston-OBC; Jordon Toles-Team Durant; Kenneth McElrath-OBC; Sharife Cooper-A.O.T. & Isaiah LeBlanc-God First Crusaders; Dupree Bryant-RIP City; Makhi White-GHITP; Andrew Small-Florida Elite; Isaiah Kennedy-King James; Devonte Blanton-King James; Alex Wade-San Diego Select; Obinna Anyanwe-San Diego Select; Jacoby Wright-CBC Elite; Richard Waller-Garner Road Elliott; Chibuzo Agbo-San Diego Select and Richie Greavis-Team Izod, Chase Ellie-Worldwide Wildcats. 2021: Jaylen Hall-New World; Drake Booker-Oakland Soldiers; Trevor Keels-Team Takeover; Delvon Johnson-Team Glory; Noah Peeoples-EBA Hoops; Christian Moore-Bmores Finest; Tyrone Washington-West Coast All-Stars; Josh Nickelberry-Team Izod; Trey Thomas-Team Takeover; Sean Jones-All-Ohio Red, Josiah Mobley-All-Ohio Red; Wil Sizer-All-Ohio Red; Jalen McDonald and Tramon Mack.
If teams thought the match-ups in session I were extreme, wait until the action shifts to Richmond, VA for session II. The match-ups in 2020 will be epic, and some of the teams that are currently packing 5-0 and 4-1 records will get a taste just what “NYBL competition” is really all about. We understand we did not catch every player who logged in standout performance but we intend to focus on teams and players that did not get much exposure from session to session. Can’t wait for session II!