June 22, 2024

Team Takeover, Kiyan Anthony, Isaiah Denis and Darius Acuff shine

WESTFIELD, Ind. – The Pacers Athletic Center is the situation of session III of the 2024 EYBL season, however this one had extra at stake because it coincided with the school recruiting interval. There had been dozens, if not a whole lot, of faculty coaches available to look at the motion on Saturday together with a number of the largest names in faculty basketball.

It appeared becoming that this session came about simply exterior of Indianapolis, the place the NCAA Headquarters are situated, provided that this recruiting interval had taken place in April in earlier years, however was moved again a month to comply with the shut of the switch portal this 12 months.

Most of the coaches we spoke to had been happy with the adjustments, because it allowed them to prioritize the reinforcements mandatory for subsequent season. Simultaneously although, there was a constant sentiment that they felt delayed relative to the place they sometimes are this time of 12 months in the highschool market.

Team Takeover stays undefeated behind backcourt trio

Jordan Smith (Photo: Courtesy of Nike/@NikeEYB)

With two wins on Saturday, together with a hard-fought 65-62 win over their native DMV rival Team Durant, Team Takeover is now the one undefeated workforce within the EYBL with an ideal 9-0 file. While the defending Peach Jam champions can win in a wide range of alternative ways, it’s their backcourt that actually appears to separate them.

Nyk Lewis and Derek Dixon took turns delivering starring performances right now. Lewis, ranked No. 56 within the class of 2025, is a scoring lead guard who completed with a team-high 19 factors over CP3, however was much more spectacular early within the day in opposition to Team Durant, when he scored two key baskets down the stretch to assist ship the slim win. Dixon, a fellow four-star top-100 guard, confirmed off his three-point capturing in opposition to Team CP3 and continues to standout together with his total mixture of basketball IQ and instinctive really feel for the sport.

Rising junior guard Jordan Smith might not have put up the identical scoring numbers up to now this weekend, however he’s an apparent catalyst for this workforce. Long, highly effective, and athletic, Smith is already an elite defender and perimeter rebounder. He busts out to show protection into offense with excessive pace and pressure and has additionally proven development together with his ball abilities.

Duke head coach Jon Scheyer was entrance and middle for each of Takeover’s video games right now whereas they had been additionally watched by Jim Larranaga, Rick Barnes, Micah Shrewsberry, Jeff Capel, Sean Miller, Mike Young and assistants from quite a few packages.

Kiyan Anthony taking part in a number one function

Kiyan Anthony (Photo: Courtesy of Nike EYBL)

Kiyan Anthony‘s ascension has been one of the storylines of this spring, and it’s plain to see right here this weekend. After opening the weekend with 25 factors in opposition to the PSA Cardinals and 18 in opposition to ProSkills, Anthony exploded for 28 factors, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals on Saturday afternoon in opposition to Team Final. He scored 25 of these factors within the first three quarters of the sport, accounting for greater than half his workforce’s factors at that time. Most spectacular, was that he did so whereas taking part in within the circulation and not dominating the ball, but nonetheless being aggressive.

His pull-up sport was particularly potent. He was in a position to get to it in quite a lot of methods, whether or not he was punishing defenders for not having their palms up, discovering the open house in transition, or placing defenders in jail when working in ball-screens. He additionally combined in some spectacular footwork off the catch, lay-up making capacity across the paint, and even the power to take smaller guards into the put up.

From a recruiting perspective, Syracuse head coach Red Autry was there together with two assistants. While his father, Carmelo Anthony, continued to be a fixture on the baseline, and even Lebron James made his approach over to take-in a lot of the sport.

Isaiah Denis is a prospect on the rise

Isaiah Denis (Photo: Courtesy of Nike EYBL)

Coming off a state championship in North Carolina, and growing high-major recruitment, Team CP3’s Isaiah Denis seems to be like a serious riser on the EYBL circuit.

Dennis is a combo-guard identified for his shot-making, however who confirmed versatile instruments. The jumper is clearly a weapon, with very mushy pure contact and a fast launch, it’s straightforward to see the place his repute comes from. Additionally although, he probed the lane and made some robust finishes, confirmed the flexibility to play each on and off the ball, has good perimeter measurement, and loads of untapped potential as his body retains filling out.

Florida grew to become the newest college to supply him a scholarship on Saturday, following Mississippi State and Texas A&M who had jumped in earlier this month, whereas packages like NC State and Virginia Tech have deeper roots.

Denis is at the moment unranked within the nationwide class of 2025, however suffice it to say that received’t be the case for lengthy.

Darius Acuff persevering with to place up numbers

Darius Acuff (Photo: Courtesy of Nike/@NikeEYB)

There may not be any participant in Indianapolis scoring the ball extra persistently than Darius Acuff Jr., which ought to come as a shock to completely nobody. He had 22 in opposition to the Oakland Solider, 29 and 5 assists in a win over NW Rotary Rebels, and then 27 in Saturday’s nightcap in opposition to Mac Irvin Fire.

Acuff was aggressively in search of his jumper, changing 3-9 from behind the arc, and whereas that share was marginal by his requirements, it arrange the remainder of his assault. Defenders had been pressured to select their poison and Acuff’s deliberate tempo and the development of his change of tempo video games had been extraordinarily notable.

He’s at all times had a deadly second transfer off the dribble, however his capacity to combine a number of strikes collectively, and to take action with selection was very clear. One possession it may be a hesi-go. The subsequent it may be a killer-cross right into a second cross-over if the defender wasn’t there, and the truth that he might create house for his pull-up or get downhill to the rim simply difficult issues that rather more for opposing defenders.

There had been a slew of head coaches watching Acuff on Saturday together with the likes of Dan Hurley, John Calipari, and Mark Pope, whereas Bill Self was within the day prior.