By Kevin Duffy
RBK U Day 1
Team Allen Iverson 69 Team Baron Davis 64
Renardo Sidney, the top-ranked prospect in the class of 2009, did not disappoint as he scored from all over the court and finished with 26 points and 10 rebounds as Team Iverson held off Team Davis. Sidney connected on two consecutive three-pointers and began to settle for outside shots as he rendered his wide 240 pound frame practically useless. As Team Davis made a run at the end, Sidney decided to move his game to the low-block, where he completely dominated with an array of power and finesse post moves. Arizona bound guard Brandon Jennings and Washington signee Isaiah Thomas (no relation to Knicks GM and coach) were terrific in the backcourt together. Thomas knocked down perimeter shots and created opportunities for the athletic Jennings to slash his way to the basket. The duo combined for 22 points and 10 assists in the victory. The one negative thing that Team Iverson can take away from the game is that their floor leader, Thomas, committed 7 turnovers.
Renaldo Woolridge led the way for Team Davis with 13 points on 3/5 shooting from downtown. Kenny Boynton, regarded as one of the top guards in the class of 2009, struggled mightily as he shot 4-16 from the field, 0-6 from three, and 3-7 from the free throw line. Boynton did not stop hustling however, as he garnered 10 rebounds in the loss.
Team Rajon Rondo 88 Team Jamal Crawford 76
Shaquille Johnson and Romero Osby teamed up to lift Team Rondo over Team Crawford, as the duo combined for 39 points and made 17-19 free throw attempts. Jordan Henriquez, a lean center out of Portchester (NY), supplied Team Rondo with good energy and timely defense on the interior, as he scored 9 points and tallied 11 rebounds.
Dominic Cheek played outstanding for Team Crawford, scoring 12 points (3/7 FG, 2/3 3’s, 4/4 FT’s) in just 15 minutes before he was forced to leave the game with an ankle injury. Malcolm Lee, the highly-touted UCLA recruit, hoisted up forced shot after forced shot en route to a disappointing 5/19 performance from the field. Lee shot just 1/8 from beyond the arc.
Team Shaun Livingston 81 Team Allan Ray 66
Andrew Randell, a 6’7’’ reserve forward from Philadelphia, led the way for Team Livingston with a 19 point 8 rebound performance as he dominated the Allan Ray back-ups, shooting 8/11 from the field and an impressive 3/5 from downtown. He received plenty of help from aggressive St. Anthony PG Tyshawn Taylor, who added 14 points in the win. Kevin Jones (Mt. Vernon, NY) , Justin Brownlee (Tifton, GA), and Verdell Jones (Champaign, IL) each scored 11 points for Team Livingston.
There were few bright spots for Team Ray, but Mookie Jones (Peekskill, NY) showed good length and overall skill as he scored a team-high 13 points. Darryl Bryant (Bronx, NY) exhibited quintessential New York point guard skills as he used his strong body and good quickness to get into the lane and score 11 points. Bryant, being sought after by the likes of St. Johns and Villanova, struggled with his jumpshot as he shot just 3/11 from the field.
Team Gerald Green 74 Team Yao Ming 73
Eshaunte Jones made two of three free throws after being fouled on a three-pointer in the closing seconds to give Team Green the win. Isaiah Armwood and Tristan Thompson each scored 12 points in a well balanced attack for Green. Thompson was particularly impressive because he is going to be a sophomore in high school, while most of the other players are entering their senior year.
Team Yao was led by wings Darius Miller and William Buford, who scored 14 and 13 points respectively. Yao also has a surplus of talented post players in Colin Reddick, Richard Howell, and Chris Braswell. Braswell quietly scored 10 points, but Howell and Reddick struggled to generate any offense.
Team Marvin Williams 81 Team Rasual Butler 65
BJ Montario (Waterbury, CT) and Jio Fontan (Paterson, NJ) both came off the bench to score 16 points in a blowout win. Anthony Marshall (Las Vegas, NV) also chipped in with 12 points in a back-up role.
Though starters Olek Czyz, Elston Turner, and Kevin Dillard all played well, the true difference in the game was the strength of Team Williams’ second unit, which dominated Team Butler’s by a score of 55-36.
Michael Rosario (Jersey City, NJ) needed 18 shot attempts to score his team-high 16 points. Travon Woodall, a 6’0’’ PG out of Paterson, NJ was much more efficient, scoring 15 points on 5/7 shooting from the field and 3/4 from three-point range. Reserve SF Ari Stewart (Marietta, GA) flashed tremendous athleticism and skill en route to a solid 11-point effort off the bench.
Team Al Jefferson 75 Team Thabo Sefolosha 69
Terence Jennings, a long big man with strength and explosiveness reminiscent of Amare Stoudemire, dominated on the interior as he scored 18 points and collected 13 rebounds for Team Jefferson. Jennings was supplanted by frontcourt mates Tyreese Breshers and Eric Frederick, who combined for 21 points.
Team Thabo was carried by the 17 point effort of shooting guard Elliot Williams. J’Mison Morgan, a 6’11’’ 270 lb center out of Dallas, went down late in the game with a knee injury. Morgan had been receiving attention from schools such as Alabama, Kentucky, Kansas, and Arizona. The impact of the knee injury on the rest of his camp remains to be seen.
Team Allen Iverson 84 Team Jamal Crawford 80
In what was undoubtedly the most exciting game of the day, Iverson vs. Crawford essentially turned into Brandon Jennings vs. Malcolm Lee. The two guards traded spectacular baskets that ranged from pull-up three’s to high-flying dunks until the very end of the game, when Jennings converted on two free throws and Lee missed two that could have tied the game with under 10 seconds left. When it was all said and done, the 6’2’’ Jennings had amassed 21 points, including three 3-pointers and perhaps the highlight dunk of the day.
Lee shook off his dreadful RBK debut and rebounded with a 20 point effort while shooting a 8/12 from the field and 3/4 from long range. He dribbled a little too much and took some wild shots, but he showed a Kobe Bryant-like ability to score from anywhere on the floor.
Renardo Sidney did not go unnoticed either. The do-it-all big man scored 20 points and hit two threes in another dominating performance. Team Iverson also got a lift from back-up center Allan Chaney, who contributed 11 points, 6 rebounds, and a thunderous put-back dunk. Isaiah Thomas struggled mightily from the field (3/15), but made up for it by running the team efficiently and dishing out 6 assists with only 2 turnovers.
Reserve guard Michael Snaer made a big name for himself in a losing effort. Snaer, an upcoming junior at Rancho Verde HS in Moreno Valley, CA, made 4 threes and scored 16 points as he proved to be one of the top outside shooters in the entire camp.
Team Rajon Rondo 75 Team Allan Ray 70
LeBryan Nash, a 6’7’’ forward who just graduated 8th grade in Cedar Hill, TX, was instrumental in Team Rondo’s victory as he notched 9 points and 10 rebounds. While we were all witnesses to LeBryan, King Nash did receive some help. PG Courtney Fortson aided the young fellow with 14 points.
Team Ray was carried by a number of solid performances. Swingman Michael Shannahan led the way with 13 points, while big man Dwight Miller added 9 points and 9 rebounds and Mookie Jones contributed 10 points of his own.
Team Shaun Livingston 83 Team Baron Davis 67
Andrew Randell put on another show for the hometown crowd as he scored 18 more points for Team Livingston. Athletic swingman Jarrett Mann played hard-nosed defense and slashed his way to 17 points. Kevin Jones, a big center with long arms out of Mount Vernon, added another 17 to propel Livingston.
Team Davis went cold from the field, as sweet-shooting SF Renaldo Woolridge missed on all 7 of his three-point attempts and Kenny Boynton continued to struggle, shooting just 3/12 from the field. Long and active swingman Charles Odum was the only player who could find the bottom of the net as he scored 13 points on 6/8 shooting.
Team Yao Ming 92 Team Marvin Williams 73
Team Yao saw had two players, William Buford and Richard Howell, score 23 points. Buford used his speed to get a lot of fast break points and also connected on three long range shots. Howell was far too big for his defender, BJ Monteiro, and used brute strength and athleticism to shoot an astonishing 10/10 from the field.
While Monteiro struggled to contain Howell, he did not have any struggles on the offensive end. The Waterbury (CT) product employed a number of creative finishes and reverse lay-ups as he scored a team-high 21 points on 10/14 shooting. He also added a few weakside shot-blocks and drew a charge, which is a rarity in a summer league game. Elston Turner and Jio Fontan, 13 and 12 points respectively, were the only other real bright spots for Team Marvin.
Team Gerald Green 88 Team Thabo Selfolosha 84
Olu Ashaolu exploded for 26 points on 12/15 shooting for Team Green. David Kyles added a very efficient 15 points (he attempted just 6 shots) for the victors. Frank Ben-Eze, a muscular big man with very long arms, continued to disappoint offensively as he scored just 4 points. Ben-Eze did collect 10 rebounds and block 2 shots, however.
Stevie Mejia, a strong-bodied 5’10’’ guard out of Hyde Park, MA, went off for Team Thabo, as he scored all 18 of his points off of three-pointers. Reserves Terry Bembry and Fuquan Edwin both scored 12 points, but Team Thabo got very little production from its starters and as a result found themselves on the losing end.
Team Al Jefferson 83 Team Rasual Butler 81
The last contest of the night was a snoozer…until the last minute when it suddenly became close and Terence Jennings awoke from hibernation to hit a 35-footer at the buzzer to win the game. Aside from his late game heroics, Jennings had the quietest 16 point 11 rebound performance anyone could possibly have. Multi-talented SF Eric Frederick used his big body and offensive creativity to put up 15 points for Team Jefferson.
Team Butler was led by back-up SF Ari Stewart, a high-energy athlete with a good jumpshot and two more years of high school eligibility. The Marietta, GA prodigy proved his first game was not a fluke, as poured in 16 points against one of the bigger and more talented teams in the field. SG Michael Rosario caught fire in the second half and finished the game with 16 points on 4/6 shooting from behind the arc. Clarence Trent, a SF with tremendous size and talent, continued to struggle as he put up a goose-egg for the second straight game. Trent had been high on the radar’s of UConn and Arkansas, but his stock is likely to drop if he continues to perform at such a low level.