This past weekend, Phenom Hoops took the opportunity to maximize our downtime and continue providing coverage throughout the region. While the event in Rock Hill drew a ton of attention, prospects could be found playing in numerous locations—including at the Triad Blue Chips East Fall League in Greensboro. We traveled out to Shining Light Academy and caught most of the action, and this article will take a closer look at some standouts and the coinciding storylines from the evening…
5’9 ’21 Kadyn Dawkins (Eastern Guilford)
Another setting, another high-level showing from Dawkins as the leader of this Wildcats squad. He was the best player on the floor and, despite going against a quality matchup, got whatever and wherever he wanted on the court. Dawkins effortlessly dictated the action with the ball in his hands, displaying IQ and poise while offering his usual balance between playmaking and three-level scoring. He knocked down shots, worked to set up others, and applied constant downhill pressure as a penetrator. Dawkins continues to cause problems for opponents with his defensive prowess, given his combination of quickness, positioning, and anticipation. After securing his second offer from Mars Hill, college coaches should be well-aware of Dawkins going into his senior season.
Eastern Guilford Will Retain Their Status as a Championship Contender
Any team immediately vaults themselves into competitive territory with Dawkins at the helm. However, this Eastern Guilford squad certainly goes beyond their two-way leader. Kamell Smith is an excellent running mate alongside Dawkins, as they are nearly polar opposites. Smith is a strong, physical, athletic wing/forward with the necessary size and versatility to be an impact player against all types of opponents. He’s a great secondary scorer and rebounder with a willingness to make hustle plays on both ends of the floor. Smith welcomes anyone to stand in his path when attacking the rim, as he will finish over or through almost any amount of contact at the rim. In many ways, Jayron Rankin stands out as their toughest, grittiest, most defensive-oriented player on the roster. His high motor, defensive prowess, and overall intensity make him an absolute monster at the point of attack. Rankin’s effort and energy level naturally allows him to make an impact. He’s also a capable penetrator and understands how to find his offensive opportunities within the flow of the team structure. Beyond those three, everyone else places emphasis on doing the little things. As simple as it sounds, guys like Deandre McCollum along with their slew of role players make a major difference for the final product. Each player who logs minutes knows their role and identity within the bigger picture. It might not sound like a big deal, but their commitment to the team concept is certainly going to take this squad far during the upcoming season.