The Las Vegas Middle School Combine took place on Sunday, October 30th at the Tarkanian Basketball Academy, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The combine style event is designed to gain valuable metrics about young players, teach them skills and drills, and…
The Las Vegas Middle School Combine took place on Sunday, October 30th at the Tarkanian Basketball Academy, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The combine style event is designed to gain valuable metrics about young players, teach them skills and drills, and allow them to compete against each other in a competitive, team 1st environment. The camp featured 21 players, ranging from the class of 2029, 2028, and 2027. I love this combine format, specifically because it provides me with a chance to watch players make an impact in a variety of under-the-radar ways. Here’s a look at some of my top Sleepers from the combine.
Hooks was the hero of game two. With only seconds remaining on the clock and his team trailing 1-0 in the series, the 5’7 guard drove to the bucket to get fouled, he then walked to the line and sank a 1 for 2, to allow coach Kelly’s squad to tie the series at 1 game apiece.
Amari Carroll was the smallest kid at the camp, and one of the youngest. That did not stop him from being one of the toughest. The little PG, got banged around good, but never folded. He was a pest on the defensive end, playing the role of pesky little brother to the older players. Offensively I loved the confidence he played with as he was not shy about taking it into the paint. He also showed a good IQ, looking to pass, after penetration, rather than force up tough contested shots.
Spoke with Merto after the camp, and I think he may have been harder on himself than I was. Thought he was solid, he showed the ability to knock down open shots, and he finished quite a few plays with layups. The key for him will be how quickly he can improve his handle, which will allow him to more easily create shots for himself.
Harris would be my pick for Glue guy of the camp. He did a good job of helping Team Clark, get second chance opportunities, using his 24.2′ vertical leap to sky for offensive rebounds. His vertical measurement was the highest of the camp, and the second highest ever recorded at the combine.
Simmons looks like a long prospect and the metrics backed it up as he measured out at the longest wingspan in the combine. His 77.5 inch wingspan is equalivent to that of a 6’3 player. He was a sneaky good defender at the camp, showing the ability to stay in front of opponents looking to slash to the lane. As he improves his offensvive skill set, and measures out accordingly, I could see Simmons being a definite sleeper to keep an eye on.
Lewis was a scrappy unselfish player. His best trait seems to be his ability to win 50/50 balls, and make plays. He threw a couple nice full court dimes to teammates, showing off a good IQ and accurate passing ability.