|P.J. Neal, Duncan Powell, Juan Reyna, Emmanuel Obaseki & Damon Nicholas Jr.|
The UA Next Combine in Dallas, TX is only a couple of hours old and has only featured skills and drills and combine testing, but already, a couple of the forty 8th graders here are setting themselves apart from the competition. The best 2 players we’ve seen so far are P.J. Neal (6’2/PG/2021/Houston, TX) and Duncan Powell (6’7/PF/2021/DeSoto, TX). Both guys are excelling at the skill and drills portion of the event before the games even begin this afternoon. Neal is a big, sturdy PG who prefers to find open teammates rather than score; however, his size, strength, athleticism and ball skill equip him to get to the cup. He’s a high-energy guy who doesn’t mind sitting down and defending smaller guards. Powell is a bruiser with a solid frame and explosiveness. He’s more than just a big who can use his size as a weapon; it’s also clear he has been in the gym working on his skill set. He has the ability to stop and pop and hit the mid-range shot, in addition to powering his way to the cup. He rebounds and defends well and plays with a good motor. He also has nice touch around the rim rebounds well and will bang it on you if he gets a chance.
Neil and Powell are not the only early standouts we’ve seen so far here in Dallas. We also liked Juan Reyna (6’2/PG/2021/San Antonio, TX), Jaylon McDaniel (6’6/PF/2021/Les Summit, MO), Wilfredo Amaro (6’3/CG/2021/Floresville, TX), Harrison Ingram (6’5/WF/2021/Dallas, TX), Emmanuel Obaseki (6’2/PG/2021/Allen, TX), Damon Nicholas Jr. (6’2/CG/2021/Arlington, TX), Wade Taylor IV (5’10/PG/2021/Dallas, TX), Zion Swader (5’11/PG/2021/Murfeesboro, TN,) and Gavin Perryman (6’1/PG/2021/Dallas, TX). It’s important to note that it’s still very early in the event and there are still a number of players who have a chance to gain some recognition when the games tip off this afternoon. We just wanted to put something up early which highlights some of the kids who caught our eye early. Stay tuned for more event coverage later.