- Antonio Williams, Basketball Recruiting
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Day 3 of the LeBron James Skills Academy featured several hotly contested games, but it was not nearly as intense as the action from the previous day. Nevertheless, a number of talented prospects continued to fight through various levels of fatigue to display their impressive basketball gifts.
John Jenkins, 6-4, SG
Jenkins continued his torrid shooting pace, knocking down perimeter shot after perimeter shot. He has very good range on his jumper preferring to shoot the pull-up 3 in transition over driving to the rim. He cradles the ball a little right before his release but his textbook follow-through ends up rectifying any flaws in his lethal jumper.
Roscoe Smith, 6-7, SF
Smith plays with unbelievable energy on both ends of the court. He really excels on the defensive end, using his length, quickness and leaping ability to badger opponents into mistakes. He also does a very good job on the glass on both ends of the court. Smith has to improve his shot selection on offense and become a better jump-shooter. He looked to shoot the ball every time he touched it, indicating his will to prove himself on the national stage. Once he becomes more patient and adds muscle and strength to his frame, he will become a devastating offensive force.
Michael Gilchrist, 6-7, Combo-Forward
Gilchrist spent a great deal of time running the point for his club. He does a great job of using his quick first step to break down defenders and get to the rim for finishes. Gilchrist, preparing for his sophomore season, has a no-fear attitude and played as if he belonged with the older, more established players. He has to continue to improve his ball-handling skills as well as his jumper, though he connected on a few midrange, pull-up jump shots. Gilchrist plays with tons of energy and defends with great vigor.
Xavier Henry, 6-6, SG
Henry did not start the camp shooting well, but his shooting has gradually improved as the camp has progressed. He has range on his jumper that extends to 3-point land, but he relies on it a tad too much at times. Once he goes to the rim, he uses his strength to draw contact and still finish off shots. Henry needs to add a midrange game to his offensive arsenal, but he plays defense with good effort, even if his perimeter shot does not fall.
Zeke Marshall, 6-11, C
Marshall changes ends very well and can finish off the break with his good foot speed for a man of his height, though he needs to exert more effort in this department. On defense, he uses his length to block and alter shots at a very high rate. He has an emerging offensive game and can connect on short jumpers. Marshall has to increase his strength level, especially in the lower half; he gets easily knocked off balance when he tries to establish position for rebounding and scoring.
Marcus Jordan, 6-3, Combo Guard
Jordan again used his energy and athleticism to make things happen for his team on both ends of the court. He excels as both an on-ball and help-defender, using his quick, closing speed and leaping ability to contest shots of bigger opponents. He also plays passing lanes very well for steals. On offense, Jordan uses his quick first step and leaping ability to get to the paint and draw fouls on opponents, while still getting shots off due to his ability to take contact and adjust in the air for layups.
Alex Oriakhi, 6-8, PF
Oriakhi played with good intensity on the defensive end, contesting shots on defense and hitting the defensive glass. On offense, he displayed his ability to hit jumpers in the 12-15 foot range in addition to using a nifty, lefty jump-hook in the post on the right block. Oriakhi commanded the ball on offense without whining, which commands the respect of his teammates, especially if he keeps converting his touches into baskets.
Keith Gallon, 6-9, C
Gallon, at this point, does not have the stamina to maintain a high level of effort throughout a game. However, he does have very good feet for a player of his size and good hands, easily catching passes in traffic in the post. He also has very good basketball instincts and impresses with his surprisingly good vision and passing ability. If Gallon loses about 50 pounds and redefines his body, he could develop into an NBA player down the road.
Milton Jennings, 6-9, PF
Jennings spent the previous day opting to shoot perimeter jump shots and did not mix it up in the paint. During games on this day, Jennings made an adjustment and played with very good activity in the painted area. He crashed the boards on both ends and contested shots with regularity. He also finished around the rim with both hands on offense first, then he elected to use his jump shot, which he connected on more due to the fact that he built his confidence by making lay-ins first.
Wallace Judge, 6-7, Combo Forward
At this point, Judge does not have a refined post game, but he used his quickness and athleticism to make definitive, quick moves in the paint, which makes him very hard for opposing defenses to handle. Judge also made plays in transition, contesting shots and starting breaks with rebounds, then running the floor for the finish on the other end.
Kammeon Holsey, 6-7, PF
Holsey, though thin, does not shy away from contact in the paint, in fact; he initiates a great deal of action in traffic. His lack of strength and muscle sometimes hinders his ability to finish in a crowd, but he draws fouls on defenses due to his activity. Holsey will have to become a better free-throw shooter because of his ability to draw fouls. Once he improves his post game and adds muscle, he will become a very good offensive player.
Tommy Mason-Griffin, 5-10, PG
Mason-Griffin continues to show a definite evolution in his understanding of a point guard's role in his team's offense. He has improved his feel and knowing when to involve his teammates and when to look for his own offense. His quickness and strength makes him very tough to stop off the bounce and he has very good vision and passing skills.
Rodney Williams, 6-7, SF
Williams has explosive leaping ability and athleticism, using his gifts to finish a number of plays above the rim with emphatic dunks. He plays with a great deal of energy and competes at a very high level. Williams have to continue to make progress with his jump shot range and accuracy in addition to improving his ball-handling skills.
Antonio Williams is a recruiting coordinator for Scouts Inc. He previously worked as an NBA scout for Marty Blake Associates.
Silky smooth shooter John Jenkins was among the standouts during the third day of play at the LeBron James Skills Academy, writes Antonio Williams.