The weekend was action packed with big time hoops all weekend long throughout the Triad! It’s the first go around in this newly structured live period run by state officials and local high schools.
Greensboro, North Carolina– Everything came together and many prospects were provided a major platform to hoop in front of dozens of college coaches from division two to high major power five schools.
Offers were given out after some breakout performances left coaches wide eyed, June is also an important month for these teams to figure things out post graduations and with the addition of transfers , or departures. It’s early and I realize all of these squads are far from finished products, but we did learn some things about the current state of these teams.
Concord First Assembley returns a strong team
This group plays so hard one another, I understand it’s June and teams are far from a finished product, but with that being said CFAA ran like a well oiled machine. They gave hosts Greensboro Day just about all they could handle, and capped Sunday off with a thirty point drubbing of United Faith.
The backcourt– I mentioned the sharpshooting off guard Trae Benham in my previous “Big Time Ballers” piece, and it looks like his running mate 2021 Javian Cannady looks poised for a breakout senior season.
Cannady is coming for heads, and I mean that literally, on Sunday he caught an absolute poster, a vicious one handed flush, Cannady put the defender through the rim. The dunk erupted the entire gym, from everything I witness it was hands down the play of the weekend. Aside from his high flying abilities, Cannady is a straight shooter from behind the arc, and he’s quick with the basketball off the dribble.
Bigs– 6’8 2020 Cheick Traore is a real glass eater on both ends, he’s gritty and doesn’t shy away from the dirty work.
Traore battles hard, he earned his side extra possessions that proved crucial offensively, Traore has good timing and natural shotblocking instincts as well, and Traore runs the floor extremely hard every possession. Traore is far from a finished product but he’s coachable and wants to get better.
Garrett Hien at 6’7 is a floor spacer that offers up nice versatility with his size and knockdown shooting ability, his presence will open things up for these athletic slashers. Hien is also extremely active on the boards, he plays with good energy on both ends and will be vital for the Eagles.
6’5 Tyler Fearne also played some productive minutes this weekend, he’s another kid who can open things up with his shooting stroke. Fearne wasn’t afraid to bang down low and compete on the glass for this group, Fearne plays hard and guards multiple spots.
Jaden Bradley may be the best point guard in NC regardless of class.
Since Bradley arrived at Cannon expectations have been huge, last season this group was young but ready. They were forced to grow up fast as a unit, with that said this group goes as Bradley does.
Bradley plays well beyond his years at this stage, when he has the rock good things happen. Bradley scores it from all over the floor, he’s a floor general that makes others better and he’s a focal leader. Bradley plays at his pace and won’t let other guards speed him up. Defensively Bradley was locked in, before a shot to the nose ended his day he looked like the best guard on the floor pitted against Cam Hayes and Carson McCorkle.
With Bradley running the show off guard Jarvis Moss absolutely lit up this weekend from deep. Moss has a pure fluid stroke and doesn’t need much room to let it fly. Moss was the perfect compliment to Bradley in the backcourt, Moss can spot up or create looks for himself off the dribble when he’s got the ball as well, Moss showed nice athleticism on several strong finishes as well.
The front court was with out stud 2022 forward DJ Nix but 7’0 Christian Reeves did more than hold it down in his absence. We witnessed what Reeves could become and it was special, Reeves was finishing strong around the rim, dunking everything and showing soft touch with his back to the basket. Reeves is extremely long but moves well for his size also, Reeves was strong with the rock and showed patience in the post. Reeves has solid footwork and he rebounded the ball at a high rate.
Reeves is just scratching the surface but there is already a lot to like on both ends, he showed nice timing getting off the ground to contest shots without fouling. As Cannon continues to gel this group is going to be tough to beat.
Greensboro Day has some old and new faces
This group will be spearheaded by arguably the top returning backcourt in the Hoop State, Carson McCorkle and Cam Hayes are battle tested winners and they’re back to defend their state title. Some considered last season a down year for this program and the Bengals still racked up 30 wins, there is a lot to replace but things look good early.
McCorkle and Hayes willed this group through some tough competition this weekend, McCorkle can really fill it up in bunches when he’s hot. McCorkle made some tough shots from the mid range, coming off screens McCorkle is extremely active off the basketball.
Cam Hayes lives up to the five star status, he was the best player on the court for this group throughout the weekend. Hayes has one of the best mid range games I’ve seen from a prospect at this stage, off the dribble the pull up jumper is absolute money. Hayes made good decisions with the ball to and worked to get some of these new guys acclimated. Defensively Hayes is improving day by day, this could be the year he separates himself amongst a loaded point guard class in NC’s 2021 cycle.
Two newcomers looked poised to breakout and that’s Bryce Harris and Jaydon Young. Harris is a 6’6 wing from New York, throughout the weekend Harris showed something new the more I saw him.
Harris has a stocky build, he’s got wide shoulders and looks like he’s still growing. Off the bounce Harris is athletic, he attacks the cup with little regard and welcomes contact. Harris also shot the ball at a high percentage from deep, he was a reliable spot up option. Harris is going to bring needed versatility, he’s skilled and strong enough to play on the perimeter or in the paint for spurts.
Young is already a known commodity around the Hoop State, he’s one of the most talented guards in his class, after a extremely productive freshman season Young has brought his talents to the Triad.
Young looks ready to be a major contributor from day one, he fits right in with an already talented backcourt. Young is a natural point guard with the scoring prowess to play off ball as well, he made the most of catch and shoot opportunities, and Young was strong attacking the cup. Young is shifty with the basketball and already has nice size as a sophomore. Young is a gritty defender willing to guard the opponents top scoring threat as well.
6’0 2021 Cole Sinclair (Durham Academy) Without their five star 2022 wing MJ Rice, this team had to rely on other pieces.
Sinclair was there to answer the call, he put on one of the most impressive shooting performances on the weekend. Sinclair led this group in scoring basically every game, the jumper was absolute money and he converted some tough looks at the basket as well. Sinclair went against some higher touted guards and played with a chip on his shoulder, junior year could be a major one for him.
6’0 2021 KJ Garrett is another guard in this stacked 2021 class that is looking to join the conversation with the rest of these top floor generals in NC.
Garrett isn’t extremely explosive but he’s shifty with the basketball and plays within his strengths. Garrett won’t commit turnovers and you can trust him to run the show, Garrett is a reliable shot maker and taker. He doesn’t just jack up tough shots, and Garrett isn’t shy about making the extra pass to get his guys involved. Garrett and HP Christian could take that next step and knock off some of the bigger names this season.
6’3 2020 Ford Cooper (United Faith)- Easily one of the top available 2020 point guards in the Hoop State, Cooper had a very productive weekend, and often times looked like one of the top guards at the entire event.
Cooper is a high I.Q kid, he’s crafty with the basketball and won’t force the issue. Cooper smartly picked his spots and took what the defense gave, Cooper knocked down his shots and attempted to set the tone defensively for this group. Cooper is stronger than he looks and welcomes contact at the rim.
5’10 2021 Cycier Harrison (Providence Day)- Arguably the quickest guard at the showcase, no one could stay in front of Harrison, he’s an absolute blur with the rock. Harrison was the spark plug for his side. Harrison is shifty and precise with the basketball. Harrison can stop on the dime and freeze defenders before blowing by them, he’s a relentless slasher but at times can get erratic with the shot selection. They took some bumps but as Harrison matures and figures out the guys around him, this group should come together.