Nike Jordan All-American Classic: Main Event Recap – Blue Team

Nike Jordan All-American Classic: Main Event Recap – Blue Team
May 03, 2007, 09:49 pm
Blue Team

Donte Greene, 6’9, SF/PF, Syracuse
20 points, 3 rebounds, 1 block, 1 steal, 7-12 FG, 2-4 3PT, 4-7 FT

Donte Greene had a very strong game for his team, showing everyone why many scouts are so intrigued with his potential. Some say Greene is still a very raw player, and while he does lack polish in many areas of his game, he does have some excellent skills at his disposal already, the most obvious of which is his smooth jump shot. He can be inconsistent with it at times, but for the most part, he displays solid shooting mechanics and excellent body control when shooting the ball on the move, something he exhibited on multiple occasions in this game. Greene’s not in his class as a player, but it’s hard not to think of Kevin Durant when this 6’9, lanky and athletic combo forward pulls up from behind the three-point line, swishing in his extremely smooth jump shot. Greene had two three-pointers in the game, one by pulling up from behind the line in the halfcourt and the other catching and shooting in transition. He also hit an assortment of long two-pointers, including a pull-up from 18 feet and a fadeaway, contested shot from about the same range.

Greene scored the rest of his points getting to the rim, mostly just finishing on shots created by others, as his post game still needs some further refinement. Greene exhibits excellent body control when going to the rim, especially with his ability to adjust in mid-air in transition, which he did a few times throughout the games and practices. Whether it’s taking contact and adjusting his body to still get off a good lay-up attempt or extending his body to catch a poorly thrown alley-oop pass and still having the balance to put it in the hoop before touching the ground, Greene’s usually finding a way to impress in the air. He had a few athletic jams in transition in this game, one of which he went full extension on, jumping from a good distance away from the hoop. On his sole back-to-the-basket attempt in the game, Greene backed down a smaller opponent to put up a no-look hook shot, which he missed.

Greene still has a few areas of his game he needs to work on, most notably his ball-handling, defense, and post-up game, but he has a lot of things he can contribute right away at Syracuse. His ball-handling is a bit too loose at this stage of his development, and he will need to tighten that up so he could better utilize his ability to hit jump shots off-the-dribble. Defensively, Greene had one nice transition block here, but he’s going to need to develop either his post-up or perimeter man-to-man defense in the future, depending on whether he goes the small forward or power forward route, both of which he could find success doing.

Kosta Koufos, 7’0, Center, Ohio State
14 points, 8 rebounds, 1 block, 1 steal, 6-12 FG, 2-4 FT

Kosta Koufos has an up-and-down game, not really showing off the perimeter shot he’s so well known for, and struggling at times with his touch and feel in the post. He did rebound the ball well, though, and his touch game around as the game went on, as he scored 14 points by the time it was all said and done.

In a game where post-up pivots don’t usually get to showcase themselves, Kosta Koufos actually got a good share of back-to-the-basket attempts, though his lack of polish was evident on many of them. He missed on his first handful of attempts, sometimes badly, be it on lay-ups or fade-away shots from five feet out. It seems at times that he will just turn around and throw it towards the basket before getting a better sense of where he is in relation to the hoop and concentrating on putting up a more accurate attempt. In one sequence he missed a five-foot fade-away shot off the glass, then got his own rebound and badly missed the putback attempt as well.

As the game went on, Koufos settled down a bit and did a better job in the post, scoring on consecutive and-1’s at one point, one coming on a jumper off the glass from five feet out and the other coming on a lay-up at the basket. He also had one very nice move where he spun into a mini-hook shot from five feet out, doing so off of an offensive rebound. His other scores came on a transition lay-up and a wide-open jam near the hoop in the halfcourt, as well as by getting to the free-throw line on post-up attempts.

Koufos did a pretty good job rebounding the ball, using his positioning and size mostly, and also had one nice transition block where he ran the floor well to catch his opponent from behind. Defensively, Koufos didn’t get to exhibit much in the halfcourt in this relatively sloppy game, and there weren’t any post-up bigs on the other team that he got the opportunity to match-up with.

Patrick Patterson, 6’8, SF/PF, Undecided
12 points, 12 rebounds, 3 blocks, 1 steal, 5-7 FG, 2-4 FT

Patrick started off the game in pretty non-descript fashion, but really started to impact the game as it went on, showing off his ability to finish low and his prowess on the boards. He was definitely the best rebounder in the game, showing the ability to track down long balls well with his athleticism and awareness, while also going up strong and battling for balls in the painted area, showing a pretty good feel for reading the bounces off the rim. He did most of his scoring around the rim and off putbacks, scoring on an assortment of lay-ups and jams in that fashion, though he also finished some lay-ups in transition.

Defensively, Patterson was active around the painted area, contesting and blocking shots that came towards him, including one impressive post block against Blake Griffin. Patterson has yet to decide where he will attend college, but he’s the type of gritty role-player that should be able to step in and make an impact anywhere, using his athleticism and tenacious motor to score around the rim, own the boards, and make some plays on the defensive end. He’d do himself well to continue to work on his post game and develop more of a mid-range jumper, which would expand the contributions he could make for his team.

Jerryd Bayless, 6’3, PG/SG, Arizona
17 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 turnover, 5-8 FG, 7-10 FT

Jerryd Bayless made some great plays in this game, and when it was all said and done, he put together a very efficient game for himself, which is hopefully a sign of things to come for the soon-to-be Arizona freshman. At times Bayless overdribbles the ball, which caused him his one turnover in the game on an Eric Gordon pick, but he did a good job playing within himself here tonight, and consistently scoring in a variety of ways.

Bayless started the game off with a long two-pointer that he hit while on the move in transition, exhibiting the excellent body control and elevation on his shot that he’s already quickly become known for. He went on to hit another long pull-up two-pointer that was contested later in the game, as well as drawing a foul attempting his shot on a similar play. He hit one other spot-up jumper from 18 feet out, but other that that, most of his damage was done around the rim, where he got to the foul line repeatedly. Bayless mostly got to the rim on right-handed, simple drives, but used his crossover when necessary, and also showed off his pretty left-handed floater on one occasion, which he converted from about five feet out. In the intersquad scrimmage the day before the game, he showed a tendency to try and pull off complex moves when simple ones would do, but he compacted his dribble-drive game here, with obvious strong results.

Bayless dished out a few assists in transition and made a nice entry pass to the post in the halfcourt, but he wasn’t showing off much in terms of a point guard game here, and he’ll probably be more of an off-guard at Arizona, at least early in his career. He showed off his anticipation and length well on one nice transition steal, but this wasn’t a defense-heavy game. Bayless’ most impressive play on the night was probably a reverse alley-oop catch he made in the halfcourt, slipping through the back door and going up high and strong to jam the ball down, something he does very well while being just 6’3.

Nick Calathes, 6’5, PG/SG/SF, Florida
9 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 5 turnovers, 4-9 FG, 1-3 3PT

Nick Calathes put his versatility on display in this all-star game, handling and passing the ball a good share, and also scoring a bit himself. He did most of his damage in transition, finishing on easy lay-ups or making dump-offs to teammates near the rim for assists, also hitting one spot-up three on the break. This is where he got into some trouble as well, though, as he made quite a few turnovers trying to be too creative with the ball, which may just be a reflection of the style of game that was played here. Calathes brings a lot of skills to the table with his passing, ball-handling, shooting, ability to finish at the rim, and ability to play multiple positions, which should make him a fast contributor at Florida next season.

Chandler Parsons, 6’8, SF, Florida
11 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, 5-7 FG, 1-2 3PT

Chandler Parsons made solid contributions to his team the way he’s been doing all week, finishing at the rim and hitting spot-up outside shots, but still not showing much in terms of a mid-range game or the ability to put the ball on the floor. He did a good job running the floor in this game, finishing on a handful of lay-ups and jams in transition, but also dished out a few nice passes in transition, playing a good two-man game with future teammate Nick Calathes when he had the opportunity. Parsons hit just one outside shot in this game, but showed his range fairly consistently in the practices earlier in the week. With his athleticism and ability to stroke the three and finish in transition, Parsons will be a solid role player next year at Florida. But if he wants to become more than that, he’s going to need to develop an in-between game as well as some ball-handling skills, two things that would allow him to more consistently contribute in the scoring department.

Chris Wright, 6’1, PG, Georgetown
14 points, 9 assists, 3 rebounds, 7-17 FG, 0-2 3PT

Chris Wright had a pretty solid game for his team, taking advantage of the high-tempo style being played by dishing out plenty of assists in transition, mostly on routine passes up the court or dump-offs near the rim, but also throwing a nice bounce assist through the defense on one occasion and an alley-oop pass on another. He didn’t do much in terms of driving and dishing in the halfcourt, nor much creation for his teammates there, but did a solid job running his team and distributing the ball, mixing in some of his own scoring as well. He mostly scored on lay-ups in transition, but also had some drives in the halfcourt, as well as an impressive catch and score on a halfcourt possession, making an athletic catch on the low block, then spinning up for a lay-up off the glass before his defender knew what hit him. He wasn’t able to do much scoring from the long or mid-range here, missing on all of his attempts, but he showed better prowess with his jump shot in the practices earlier in the week.

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