Spiece World 2010 Edition
Recapping the Bill Hensley Memorial Run N’ Slam.
by Rodger Bohn / @rodgerbohn
After checking out last year’s Bill Hensley Memorial Run N Slam and the sick talent it brought in, we made the choice to make the trek to Fort Wayne, IN to catch the 2010 version of the event at the historic Spiece Fieldhouse. Not loaded with quite as much star power as last year’s event, 2010 brought a number of players who straight up exploded along with a number of young cats to keep an eye on. All in all, an outstanding event that was easy to trek since the majority of the games were under one roof.
Here’s a look at some of the top Punks who caught our eye:
Anthony Davis | 6-10 | PF | Mean Streets 17U | 2011
Look at Anthony Randolph and think even longer. That’s how freakishly gangly the 6-10, 195-pound Davis is. That aside, he straight up burst onto the national recruiting scene with his performance at Spiece. In fact, Davis was so dominant in one game that NBA Top 100 Camp Director Dave Telep went and gave him an invite to camp at halftime of his first game. In the games we saw, Anthony showed he can be both a pick and pop guy and a back to the basket player, mixing in a smooth jumper with solid moves in the pivot. The Chicago native who grew 5 inches in the past year used his crazy wingspan to make his presence felt as a shotblocker and held his own on the blocks, despite his lack of strength. As you’ll see in the video, it is possible to go from virtual unknown to top 10 player in the country with a strong performance in the right setting.
JP Tokoto | 6-6 | SG/SF | Wisconsin Playground Warriors 16U | 2012
Tokoto had a ridiculous weekend filled with highlight dunks and blocks before going down with an ankle injury. He tried to muster it up and play on championship Sunday, but was forced to shut it down after just a few minutes. The athletic wing may very well be the best perimeter player in the Class of 2012, mixing in sick passing and the ability to penetrate on just about anyone. Tokoto definitely has to keep working on his J, but the sky is the limit for him.
BJ Young | 6-4 | PG/SG | St. Louis Gameface 17U | 2011
Aside from Davis, Young was definitely the biggest surprise of the tourney. A pure scoring machine, he dropped 40 on Tony Wroten and hit a floater at the buzzer to win the game on top. The lanky guard was bombing from deep, finishing in traffic, and throwing up some nifty floaters. My man Eric Bossi from Rivals compared him to a shorter Jamal Crawford, which isn’t too far fetched. Young has to hit the books though, as he’s been ineligible for most of his high school career thus far.
Wayne Blackshear | 6-5 | SG | Mac Irvin Fire 17U | 2011
Blackshear played up to his rep as a top 15 guy in the country before crashing to the ground with an ankle injury in Mac Irvin’s loss to Mean Streets. The silky smooth two guard had his jumper falling from deep, was getting to the rack, and played outstanding defense. He looked like a top 5 guy in that game, to tell you the truth. Apparently the injury wasn’t too serious and the Louisville recruit was able to get back in the circuit quickly with the most athletic AAU team in the country.
Tony Wroten | 6-5 | PG | Seattle Rotary 17U | 2011
Coming off of missing the entire high school season with a leg injury, Wroten did not appear to be same player who dominated the circuit last summer. The flashy passes and deep jumpers were still there, but he didn’t quite have the same bounce or explosiveness as before. Hopefully as the summer goes on and Tony get’s his legs back under him, he is able to regain his old form as a top ten player in the Class of 2011.
Shaheed Davis | 6-8 | PF | Ohio Basketball Club 16U | 2012
Completely unknown nationally, Davis made his presence felt in a big way in the 16U bracket at Spiece. Big enough to play the 4 and athletic enough to play the 3, he created a number of mismatches all over the court en route to taking his team to the 16U championship game. Shaheed still lacks some polish, but his upside should land him a spot in the top 100 sometime soon.
Devauntes Smith-Rivera | 6-2 | SG | Indiana Elite 16U | 2012
Smith-Rivera was easily the most unstoppable scorer in the 16U bracket at Spiece. The stocky guard got to the rim on anyone, going through them or around them to the cup. He doesn’t exactly fit the mold of any position and has an old school approach to the game with his floaters and refined skill set. Conditioning and the ability to defend quicker guys have been the two main concerns that have centered around Devauntes in the past, but they weren’t evident at all in this tourney.
Cody Zeller | 6-10 | PF/C | Indiana Elite | 17U | 2011
Coming from a strong basketball pedigree (his brother Luke played at Notre Dame and brother Tyler plays for UNC presently), it’s easy to see why this youngster was able to develop at such a young age. Not a cat who’s going to blow you away with his athleticism, he compensated with his crafty and skilled play down on the blocks. Zeller was arguably the best player for the Indiana Elite 17s over the weekend and is starting to shoot up the national recruiting rankings for 2011.
Adam Woodbury | 7-0 | C | Martin Bros. Select | 16U | 2012
Woodbury was mad crucial in his team’s championship in the 16U division, providing a huge inside presence and being a beast on the glass. He has that farmboy toughness you love to see out of a 7-footer who isn’t exactly a freak athlete. Adam went to work with his back to the basket, showing off a jump hook with either hand. He still needs to improve his conditioning, but guys his size don’t exactly grow on trees.
Marshall Plumlee | 6-11 | C | Indiana Elite 17U | 2011
After missing the first day of action, the youngest of the Plumlee gang made an appearance for the second day and made his presence felt immediately on the defensive end. Marshall has nice athleticism and a good body, but his offensive game has a ways to go to catch up to his physical gifts. With both of his brothers playing at Duke, it’s pretty easy to assume where he’d go if they were to pull the trigger on an offer, although he maintains that he’s wide open at this point.
Kevin “Yogi” Ferrell | 5-10 | PG | Indiana Elite 17U | 2012
After leading all of Nap-town in scoring as just a sophomore, Ferrell has made it a point to show he can play the role of playmaker. The fearless point guard took the ball to the rim strong, shot it well from beyond the arc, and dropped some nasty dimes in transition. People hate on his size, but there’s no denying he’s going to be able to get buckets at the high-major level wherever he goes.
Marcus Paige | 6-1 | PG | Martin Bros. Select 16U | 2012
Not a guy who’s going to make any SportsCenter Top 10s anytime soon, Paige was the purest playmaker on the 16U level. His leadership and poise gave his team the 16U championship. With the outstanding decisions he made in the open floor and ability to get everyone involved in the flow of the game, it makes sense why he’s being recruited as a high major signal caller.