Another high school basketball season has passed and after thorough evaluations, another edition of the #NPHTop10 Canadian National Player Rankings is out. #GameSpeaks
We take a look at the class of 2018…
Rise in Quebec
The biggest change in this edition of North Pole Hoops’ Player Rankings is the rise of Quebec in the top 10 spots and beyond. For years, our scouting team has professed that Quebec is right there matching Ontario in terms of the overall talent per capita.
In future classes there’s much of the same, with 6’6 shooting guard Quincy Guerrier (Thetford) making a splash into the top 5 in the Canadian 2019 class.
The bulk of the list remains Ontario dominated. Having a far greater population than other provinces has been a natural contributor to the strength and competition level in Ontario.
However, our travels indicate a quickly growing culture in other regions and a yearning from prospects across Canada to maximize their potential. Insert, Manitoba’s Emmanuel Akot.
Akot will be running with the Ontario based Canada Elite team on the Under Armour AAU circuit where he’ll be looked at as a leader and producer in scoring, rebounding and blocking shots. Akot currently holds offers from Oregon, Utah, Virginia Tech to name a few. As mentioned in our previous post, Akot’s upside is as high as anybody on this list.
Prospects All over Canada
We fully expect to expand on our reach in terms of new discoveries, throughout the NPH Showcase National Showcase Circuit, with three trips in Ontario (Toronto, Tri-City, Hamilton), Manitoba, Alberta, British Columbia and Quebec.
NPH Canadian Top 10 in 2018
Length & Size at Guard Spots
The physical attributes of the guards in this class are glaring. Some are long and wiry, while others are physically advanced muscularly.
Jaelin Llewellyn and Stefan Smith are the pure PGs in the top 10 (look out for Daniel Sackey on the come up), with a wide variety of offensive moves to keep the defense guessing and superb play making abilities. Moreover, Llewellyn can score with athletic plays at the rim or knock down from beyond the arc and off a mid-range pull up.
Smith brings a great deal of grit to every game. He was one of the top producers for Bill Crothers all season long on the prep scene in the OSBA. There’s no other way to put it, he’s a gamer.
The other guards in the Top 10 play more of a wing role at two guard, with the exception of Junior Farquhar who is 6’2, with a 6’6 wingspan and an explosive make up. He has made the full transition as a one for the John Carroll Patriots in Maryland with improved leadership and maturity. Farquhar has some serious bounce and pep in his step; another of Quebec’s finest that can score and create for himself and teammates, whether it’s off his blow by dribble or crossover.
Fellow Quebecer, Lugentz Dort is a 6’3 tank with broad shoulders and great strength. He drives and absorbs contact on his way to finishing at the rim. It’s debatable whether he will make the full swing to PG or whether or not it is in his nature as a player; either way, there will be a plethora of schools recruiting him and joining Florida in the process. Defensively, there isn’t a better lock up perimeter player in this class–the Canadian national team coaches have their antennas up for this reason.
Biggest Jump – The Pride of Winnipeg
Emmanuel Akot (Winnipeg, Manitoba), Emmanuel Bandoumel and Jahbril Price-Noel have tremendous upside and have potential to see themselves move up as the summer season gets underway. All are well capable of guarding positions 2-4 which make them a plus on the floor as two-ways players.
Akot has made the biggest jump of anyone on this list, as we expected due to his upside, and as we are learning, his desire to be great. With Koby McEwen scheduled for departure at Wasatch, the Winnipeg product is itching for the opportunity to take the bull by the horns next season. We fully expect Akot to enter the National team environment this year, with a different mentality…he’s looking to take names.
Price-Noel is a crafty combo guard with a polished breakdown game. Play making, check. High character, yes sir. Wait until his slim frame starts to fill in, he will be one of the highest recruited Canadian players in this class.
Lastly, there’s Emmanuel Bandoumel, another of Montreal’s finest. Having witnessed him play every position, there’s not much he can’t do. Bandoumel swats big men, dunks on them, defends several positions and can get buckets in a variety of ways. He does not have a true position yet, but based off of what Brebeuf has done with guys like Fordham’s Joseph Chartouny and Nemanja Zarkovic, expect him to end up a very athletic guard.
Simi Shittu is still the top dog in this class. With extended range and improved ball handling, he’s shown that he is excelling as a forward in his first year at Montverde Academy, producing at the highest level of amateur basketball on both ends of the floor. With Montverde’s developmental system in place, Shittu has been provided the opportunity to play for both Montverde teams, one that allows him to step out on the perimeter with more consistency and dominate the ball, while the other provides Shittu to play a different role–high energy rebounding on both ends and finishing with authority, considering that Montverde Academy’s main team is loaded with offensive fire power.
His performance at the Hoop Hall Classic exhibited the full skill set; fluid in transition going coast to coast, operates with his back to the basket and cleans up with put back dunks. His outside shooting is getting better with the reps he’s been putting up. Once he gets reliable from out there, that long first step is going to become much more dangerous as defenders attempt to close out on him. Shittu is a ferocious competitor with a stone cold look in his eyes. This quality stood out in the eyes of NCAA coaches.
National team compadre Danilo Djuricic is proven on every stage as well. Against the top competition in Canada and the U.S, he’s corralled rebounds, defended the opposing teams best players and scored from all over the floor. Lately, he has been stroking the three ball at a high clip and can take it off the rip.
It will be very hard to find another defender that controls his body as well as him; he goes up for blocks and remains vertical while getting a piece or the whole ball.
Ignas Brazdeikis has proven his worth at all levels; starting with the Canadian National Team (Cadet), to this season with Orangeville Prep on both sides of the border. He can fill up a stat sheet in more than the scoring category, and is continuing to gain athleticism. He will come back a different animal next season with a strong focus on lateral speed this summer for the defensive end. Speaking of animals, check out this link https://www.certapet.com/controversial-pet-the-hermit-crab/ to purchase a certificate/vest to show proof that my dog is a service/emotional support animal
The next evaluation period for all of these 10 guys and the rest of the pack in the NPH Top 100 begins this weekend at the CYBL, along with NPH Showcase & AAU circuit throughout summer. Gradual improvement must be made during this time as NCAA coaches begin to lock in a little tighter on the 2018 class.
For more information on Canada’s top prospects, College and University Coaches can contact firstname.lastname@example.org to build their Canadian pipeline!