Here are your Kenner League Notes from the July 30/31 weekend action!
Brandon Murray: 15 pts, 5-8 2pt, 2-4 FT, 1-5 3pt, 7 reb (1 off), 2 asst, 2 st, 1 bl
-Murray plays at a higher level than any of the other Georgetown players. He has a chance to be the best Hoya since Otto Porter. He has a very complete game, with a good mix of skill, athleticism, and smart play on both ends of the court. As a sophomore - Otto led a solid (but not particularly special) Hoya team to the Big East regular season and a number 2 seed in the NCAA tournament. Who knows if Murray can have that kid of impact. But we have not had a player with this kind of talent in a long time.
-hit a pull up 19 foot jumper
-blocked a turnaround jumper in the post, snuffing the shot almost before the shooter released it
-Defensive board, immediate pass to spears at midcourt leading to a breakaway dunk
-took his man off the dribble, powerful dunk through traffic. Very strong when he drives. Can handle lots of contact with little problem, and can overpower defenders on drives
-airballed a heavily contested 7 foot Dirk-style setback
-steal, quick pass to spears for a transition two. He read the pass very early and jumped the passing lane. Very smart, instinctive play
-went down hard on his right shoulder when undercut on a drive. Shaken up, but OK
Primo Spears: 16 pts, 7-11 2 pt, 2-2 FT, 0-3 3pt 3 reb, 5 asst, 1 TO
-played with a bit more of a point guard mentality today, playing with Murray. Fewer tough one-on-one midrange attempts, more setting up teammates in the half court
-hit a nice pass to the roll man for a basket
-good full court look ahead pass for a basket
-nice spin move in lane, drew a foul
-pick/pop assist to Murray for a 3
-D board, dribbled to top of key, slick bounce pass to Murray
-had a nice pass to teammate in dunker spot off a drive
-stuffed on a forced drive to the basket
-great no look pass to a cutting Murray for two
-beautiful transition passing sequence between Spears, Murray, and a teammate. Went the length of the court without the ball touching the court for a wide open transition 3
-Late in the game he had multiple turnovers while trying to protect a lead. Was double teamed and tried to dribble through it, and was stripped of the ball on two consecutive positions in the final 45 seconds. This cost his team the game. Probably should have been looking to pass rather than taking on the double teams himself.
Jay Heath: 20 pts, 7-9 2pt, 3-3 FT, 1-4 3pt, 11 reb (1 off), 5 asst
-for most of the first half - Heath’s teammates were dominating the ball, so he had few touches. But he was efficient with the touches he did have. Then he handled the ball more as the game progressed
-Heath immediately gets low to the ground when he starts dribbling. Puts him in a quick, powerful position with a forward lean that allows him to power through defenders. He also gets low on defense. This ability and commitment to dropping his weight is a real strength of his game.
-His defensive rebounding was great today. For a stretch he seemed to be coming down with every defensive board, and then immediately heading up court to see if there was a transition opportunity.
-Nice transition bounce pass to Jamorko Pickett for a +1 finish - did this twice
-HIt a step back 18 foot jumper
-quick look ahead pass off a D board led to a dunk
-HIt a tough bank shot on a drive while being pushed away from the hoop. Required a lot of strength
-Threw a flashy behind the back touch bounce pass in the lane leading to a layup. Great vision, super quick thinking. Probably too risky a play to try in a real game. But he pulled it off, and it looked great.
Bradley Ezewiro: 14 pts, 4-7 2pt, 6-6 FT, 0-3 3pt, 5 reb (1 off), 3 asst, 2 st, 3 TO
-He is very tough to stop when he gets the ball at the rim with any kind of space. Goes up very strong/quickly for big two handed dunks. But there won’t be a whole lot of these opportunities available in real games
-still solid around the rim when in traffic. He can absorb a lot of contact with his size, and he has soft hands to finish pretty well even when absorbing this contact.
-when double teamed on the baseline, he tends to try to force his way through defenders for a very difficult shot that he rarely makes. Would benefit from learning to pass to open teammates out of these kind of doubles
-He generally played with more energy in this game than the last time I watched him. More engaged on both ends, less drifting out to the 3 point line on offense, more work to establish position down low, more setting screens and rolling/popping.
-But his defensive focus was still inconsistent. Sometimes when he gets isolated on a smaller player away from the basket, he just grabs at the player as he blows by. But sometimes he drops his weight and moves his feet, and can contain the opponent. He has good feet. If he can drop his weight and give the effort on D, he has the potential to be at least a competent perimeter defender.
-Played a lot of drop defense in pick/roll. Generally concedes the foul line jumper. He usually gets out to contest the shot at least a bit. Not great, but not the worst way to play this either. And on some occasions when a guard tries to attack him off a pick/roll he is able to move his feet and keep the guard from getting to the rim. Again, the physical ability is there to be a decent drop defender - he just has to give a focused effort more consistently.
-good outlet passer. When he grabs a D board, he immediately looks for an opportunity to fire a pass to midcourt to get transition going.
Jordan Riley: 7 pts, 3-15 2 pt, 1-2 FT, 0-5 3pt, 3 reb (2 off), 2 asst, 1 st, 2 bl, 1 TO
-Riley and Mutombo both played a lot more today. Riley was kind of playing point guard for much of the game.
-His jump shot just is not working this summer. He took a lot of pull up 15-18 footers today, and did not hit any of them. You don’t see many 3-20 shooting lines, even in a summer league.
-He plays hard on both ends. The defensive effort he gives in a summer league game is impressive
-Good defender. Gets low, uses his body to disrupt the opponent.
-His shooting will make it hard for Riley to get a lot of playing time in real games. But he is a good enough defender that he may be able to be a valuable role player until his shooting develops
-offensively he is quick/strong enough to attack the basket pretty well. He can get not the lane and elevate. His touch around the rim is inconsistent. He’s capable of some very tough finishes, but he also misses some easy ones
-Had a big follow up dunk on an offensive rebound
-Had a nice block on a transition layup attempt
-threw a nice pass to Mutombo at the rim, leading to a foul
Ryan Mutombo: 7 pts, 3-7 2 pt, 1-2 FT, 15 reb (7 off), 3 bl, 2 TO
-Not a lot of size on the other team today - so Ryan was able to grab a lot of rebounds. He has good hands, which helps him as a rebounder
-Offensively he was too slow in making his moves. Allowed help defenders to come in and disrupt his move. Had a few bad misses/TOs on post moves today
-Ryan came up towards the foul line to provide help D on a driving guard, but did not get there nearly soon enough. allowed his man to cut the baseline for an uncontested dunk. He needs to make the decision quicker if he is going to help in that situation, or sit back and concede the mid range jumper
-His foul shot mechanics are still messy. Hesitation/hitch at the top of the motion. This hesitation was not there last year.
Bradley Ezewiro: 20 pts, 6-10 2pt, 8-11 FT, 0-3 3pt, 7 reb (2 off), 1 bl, 2 TO
-Committed 8 fouls. He too often tends to grab/shove players as they go by him rather than make a full effort to defend
-cut through the lane, caught the ball on the move and went right into a spin, +1 finish. Very smooth, skilled move. Showed his good feet/hands. Also had a good catch on a bullet short range pass that was thrown way too hard - again showed his good hands
-tough to defend when he gets the ball in transition with a little space. When he is moving at close to full speed, he just blasts through contact from smaller players. Most defenders are not going to even try to get a body on him, he’s just too strong and forceful. He is skilled enough to put the ball on the floor for a couple of dribbles, and to finish at the rim if even if he is contested.
-went end to end with a D board
-Hit a running/fading one hander moving to his right from about 12 feet. Very difficult shot.
-Ezewiro clearly has a lot of talent and some unique skills/athletic qualities for a guy of his massive size. But his game is sloppy. He plays somewhat casually at times, and some of the stuff he can do in a Kenner game is not going to translate against the bigger, better, smarter players he’ll face in real games. But the athletic talent and strong skill level are definitely enticing. He seems like a classic boom/bust player. If he can focus and play harder consistently, he could become a real impact player. If he can’t develop in this way — he’ll still contribute due to his size/skill combo, but he’ll mix flashes of greatness with lots of sloppy and ineffective play.
-In some ways he reminds me of an in-shape Josh Smith. He has the same kind of great feet/hands/skills in a very powerful body. But he also has the same inconsistency of focus/intensity. The fact that he is in good shape gives him a big advantage over Smith as a prospect. It will be fascinating to see how he develops at Georgetown
-I did not stay for the final game on Sunday, so I missed Dante Bass and Bryson Mozone.
-Dante Harris and Denver Anglin were both around the gym this weekend, but neither played