One down, eight to go in the National Showcase Circuit as we completed our first stop in Halifax, Nova Scotia where a collection of talent from all over the Maritime provinces spent their weekend grinding it out, developing and receiving national recognition, during Easter weekend.
Exposure is something that the NPH Showcase Camps provide, however a lot more than that got done as prospects went through seminars off the court and in the classroom. Time management, progress reports and self-evaluation were the key focus areas of the character development seminars.
A new name on the radar Ben Stevens, displayed both high character traits and on court skills which is why he earned the camp’s Break Out Player recognition, Presented by Rothesay Netherwood School.
Ben Stevens was an unusual mold from what we’re accustomed to seeing on Canada’s East Coast. He’s a 6’7 wiry, bouncy, small forward that opened up and showed more of his skill set as the weekend progressed, along with an increased level of aggression, displayed by a play where he nearly POSTERIZED a defender, before being fouled.
He’s currently in the 2017 class but could reclassify as a 2018 if he chooses to pursue a post-grad year. The extra year would give him ample time to develop muscle, lower his centre of gravity and extend his perimeter skills. One thing is for sure the upside is evident.
You can’t miss Stevens if you’re from Halifax, but this is a guy who is deserving of more recognition on a national level and that’s what he’s going to get after his 16 point, 6 rebound and 3 steal performance in the Top Prospect game.
Coaches have already started ringing in to learn more about this one.
Two other names that stuck out were Rothesay Netherwood’s, William Spaulding and Horton’s 6’3 combo guard Keevan Veinot who earned MVP; consistent knock down shooters that can both handle it. They went back and forth going shot for shot to keep the upperclassmen game tight before Spaulding’s team ended up with the 96-92 win as he racked in 23 points, 9 rebounds and 3 assists.
Spaulding is a crafty guard with a shifty handle that enables him to pull up and separate and create space from his defender. One of his strongest attributes is the ability to get off his own shot.
Veinot exploded and made his mark in the Upperclassmen game where he dropped 32 points and pulled in 12 rebounds to go with three assists.
His IQ and spacial awareness are a plus to his shot making and ball handling responsibilities. University coaches have called to express interest immediately after the Showcase. Another prospect that will make his mark in the national rankings.
There are several other upperclassmen that will be mentioned in our report to college/university coaches on both sides of the border.
For the underclassmen, Liam Chislett was locked in for MVP, making it the third straight year that someone from Newfoundland takes home this award in Halifax. (Cole Long, Jason Thompson).
Chislett’s motor never turned off all weekend, this is how he separated himself from the pack. He kept pressure on the guards and then in the half court set got where he wanted on the floor whether to feed teammates or score himself.
Another travelling man from Newfoundland Akech Tong stood out all weekend–Strong work ethic, versatility, IQ and communication–he did it all with a smile on, bring a desire to learn.
The 6’2 Tong of the Canadian 2018 class has the physicals to be a lock down guy with increased lower body strength on the docket. The mentality is already in place as he got in the passing lanes and had five steals in the game.
The Nation-wide circuit continues…
- Julian Roche
- Drew Jacklin
- Matt McCrowe
- Andrew Milner
- Demeric Mercer
- Cairo Berry
- Caleb Sooley
- Sandrias Clayton
- Adam Lambert
- Tristan Goodwin
NPH Showcase National Camp Circuit
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