OTR The Opening – Saturday Stock Risers – March 20, 2022
CUMMING, Georgia, – The travel season cranked up this weekend. Over 100 hundred teams from around the state of Georgia converged on four sites for The Opening hosted by On the Radar Hoops. While the last of the unsigned 2022 prospects are finding their next home, prospects from the class of 2023 and beyond are making their mark on the basketball scene. Here is a recap of some of the notable performances from day one of the event.
By: Jonathan Hemingway
Promise Elite has a roster full of talent. Their front line is held down by 2023 forward Talal Ansah. He battles for position and cleans the glass regularly. He is the perfect complement to the host of perimeter shooters that play alongside of him.
Keep an eye on the development of Ashton Crawford with the Ballin Blazers. He is a 6-foot-8 forward who brings activity and production to the floor. We found him blocking shots, cleaning the glass, and finishing shots in the pick-and-roll on Saturday afternoon. The junior could be poised for a breakout spring if he keeps this type of activity.
Stephan Davidov finished with 31 points in an overtime win for the Atlanta Timberwolves on Saturday afternoon. The 6-4 guard brings length, skill, and instinct to the court. He plays the game with poise and efficiency.
Fresh off another Final Four appearance with Wheeler High School, Juvon Gamory was back with the Smyrna Stars doing what he does best. He makes plays, hits shots, and generally stirs the drink for his team. He led a come from behind victory for his Stars team while scoring 23 points in the process. He also announced that he is reclassifying to the class of 2023.
Hawks Elite have a player in Malachi Hampton who should grab the attention of many college programs in the region. The 6-6 wing has an athletic ceiling that is off the charts for normal players. Add in his high motor and he will bring production every night.
Cade Simmons of Norcross Heat is a player who caught the attention of multiple evaluators on Saturday. He is a notable 3-point shooter, but he made his mark with some crafty finishes in the paint in a match-up versus Team Georgia Magic. The lefty has a signature spin move that is hard to contain.
Georgia Stars EYBL point guard Rodrigo Fariez will quickly become a popular name on the circuit this year. He controls the game with pace and will set up his teammates with timely pocket passes in the paint.
Class of 2024 wing Sam Maynard is becoming a staff favorite. His consistency is his calling card. He plays great positional defense while also finishing plays at the rim. Add in his ball handling and versatility and he is a solid all-around prospect.
Woods Elite brought a team filled with prospects. In their first game of the day, a win over Hawks Elite, Eltramon Smith was the prospect who took the headlines. He is a bouncy wing who can finish above the rim in transition. His trajectory is on the way up.
Class of 2023 guard David Thomas of the Atlanta Celtics caught the attention of our staff this weekend. He is the model of efficiency, rarely over dribbling to get to a spot. And when finds a gap in the defense he can score in several ways.
Sean Van Dorn of AE5 Rim Rockers is the ideal 2-way wing for today’s game. He brings length and defensive activity. He is a great compliment to any roster.
Guard Yuta Yamamoto brings the right energy and creates a chemistry when he is on the floor for Georgia Legacy. He proves that a player does not have to be the tallest to make the game shift in his favor. His quick, accurate shooting combined with quick movement away from the ball make him a perfect team player.
Jonathan Hemingway has been a National Evaluator for On the Radar Hoops since 2013. He has been involved in the basketball community since 1995 as a coach, camp director and evaluator. You can reach him at JLHemingway@gmail.com and follow him on twitter @JL_Hemingway.
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