OTR Hoops: Thanksgiving Showcase – Standout Guards – November 27, 2023
On The Radar Hoops hit Central Gwinnett this past Wednesday for the annual Thanksgiving Showcase. Basketball fans gathered from all over to see the state’s best talent on display and I can assure you nobody left disappointed. The day was full of surprises and final minute finishes. Here are some of the best guards we saw on Wednesday.
By: Cam Rickers
Marcus Smith – 6’0 – PG – Walnut Grove – 2025
Walnut Grove opened the morning with a statement win over Gainesville to start the year 4-0. Marcus Smith was clearly the best player on the floor, and he dominated from the opening tip to the final whistle. Walnut Grove was able to force a ton of turnovers which Marcus Smith usually turned into points on the other end. He’s electric in transition, so quick and shifty with the ball and capable of finishing over contesting defenders. From what we’ve seen in the first few games, Marcus Smith looks to be one of this year’s breakout stars.
Max McNeill – 6’1 – CG – Pebblebrook – 2025
Max McNeill was the hot hand on Wednesday, putting together his best game in a Pebblebrook uniform. McNeill went for 17 points including 4 three-pointers and was largely responsible for Pebblebrook’s 1st half lead. Off the catch, McNeill can get his feet set in a split-second and his release up top is very quick too. Defenders have to know where he is at all times or McNeill will find the open spot and fire. The Pebblebrook juniors, Max McNeill and Caleb Thomas, will make for a very intriguing backcourt over the next two years.
Omari Chaudhry – 6’2 – PG – Osborne – 2027
Omari Chaudhry entered the year as one of Georgia’s most highly touted freshmen and his performance on Wednesday lived up to the hype. He’s looking more comfortable with each game and the eye-opening flashes are growing more frequent. Chaudhry hit 4 threes in the game, showcasing the ability to knock down shots off the dribble or catch and fire. He finished with 17 points and was a big reason why Osborne came out with the win. Omari Chaudhry is certainly a name to keep up with in coming years.
Connor Teasley – 6’2 – PG – Peachtree Ridge – 2025
Peachtree Ridge provided the biggest surprise of the day, taking #1 Grayson down to the final minute. Whenever it looked like Grayson could pull away, Teasley had an answer on the other end. His 14-point 2nd half single-handedly kept Peachtree Ridge in it. Teasley’s touch inside 15 feet is elite, so good with the floaters and tear drops. He’s held his own against top competition on a number of occasions and it’s time people consider Teasley a legitimate guard prospect.
Tim Prather – 6’1 – PG – Newton – 2025
Newton travelled up to Central Gwinnett and left with a hard-fought win on Wednesday. There are so many weapons on this team, but Tim Prather has emerged as a scoring option that they can count on consistently. He finished with 17 points and didn’t miss many shots throughout the course of the game. Prather’s pull-up jumper is his bread and butter, one of the deadliest mid-range games in the state. If Prather keeps producing like this for one of the best teams in the state, college programs will surely take notice.
Cam Rickers has lived in Georgia his whole life and joined OTR as scout/evaluator this spring. He spent the year prior scouting for PrepHoops, working hard to make a name for himself within the grassroots scene. In addition to his work for OTR and PrepHoops, he is also the Recruiting & Scouting Director for Wood Elite. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @CamRickersHoops
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