“6 Man Rotation” VOL. 3
In efforts to start highlighting players not just for their status and their stats (which obviously sometimes determines who’s the best at that category), but also to try take note of players who maybe don’t always get attention because they don’t fill up the stat sheet, but still make an impact to the game. I hope to highlight players who may not always get the recognition, however at the end of the day you still have to standout among the rest. When it comes to the BASKETBALL world, I believe everyone is treated fair, but not everyone is treated equal.
The “6 Man Rotation” series will feature the best players I saw over the weekend in these categories: Best Shot Maker; Best Defender; Best Passer; Highest Motor; Best Feel/IQ; and “Mr. Play the Right Way”
The OTR Shootout part 1 was FIRE! After a lot of demand and other teams requesting to play, we decided to run it back. This time at ‘The Gym’ in Atascocita we were able to get our eyes on a lot more teams and players who we really hadn’t gotten a chance to see a lot of. Here’s my 6 Man Rotation from the OTR HS Fall Shootout II
Best Shot Maker: Seth Jones, 2022 Dickinson HS
There were a couple guys who were hot at the shootout, but Seth Jones stole the show. My first time seeing Seth and Dickinson this year, and he didn’t disappoint. In his first game he dropped 33 points on 9/13 shooting from the 3 point line. He seemed super comfortable, and you know that the coaching staff at Dickinson is going to empower him and encourage him to do his thing. Seth probably has the best hesi move in the city. He uses hesitations, and ball screens really well. He can operate in the midrange. In his game against Bryan, Dickinson found themselves about to lose in the final seconds, but with 2 seconds on a full court inbound… Seth snagged it between 2 guys like Randy Moss; then turned and pivot and knocked down a 30 foot game winner like Jordan. Shot making personified.
Best Defender: Damian Watson, 2021 Cy Woods HS
He has all the physical tools. An extreme athlete. At 6’4 with good length he has the ability to guard small guards or even bigger stronger guards. With his strength he also has the ability to guard a big when he needs to. With his speed he can even stick with shooters coming off multiple screens. What I liked and saw the most of was his anticipation skills and how well he played the passing lanes. Read a lot of long skip passes and snagged them out of the air to start the break, or even got deflections to slow down the other team. Throwing a cross court pass against Watson is almost an automatic turnover. Watson has the tools to make defensive plays in a bunch of different ways.
Best Passer: Jordan Fitch, 2021 Lake Creek HS
We look at Fitch and know him for his shot making and spunky attitude. However, I love watching him play because he is a very good basketball player. Actually a true point guard. He makes all the right reads. His shooting brings a lot of attention, and he’s crafty enough to get by and collapse the defense and make dump downs to his bigs, and kick outs to his shooters. What I liked the most about his passing was often times he found the smallest of windows and was able to deceptively get the ball through and on target. Other times he would look to attack, and maybe avoid and get around defenders in traffic and somehow drop a dime to one of his teammates for easy scoring opportunities. After watching him all preseason I’ve really taken note out of how well he assists! His passing is definitely underrated.
Highest Motor: Zion Obanla, Level Up Prep Academy
Seen Level Up play before and they are physical and aggressive, but this weekend Obanla was getting after it. 6’5 with a big frame he was making his presence felt offensively and defensively. Battles every possession for rebounds. Throws his body around. Goes for all 50/50 balls. When he’s running the floor he’s moving with a purpose. When he has the ball he’s trying to get from point A to Point B extremely aggressive. And if you’re not careful he will dunk you.. hard. The way he played with pace and moved with a sense of urgency on the floor while being productive and leading his team to wins was very good to see.
Best Feel/IQ: Jackson Cormier, 2022 St. John’s
Saw him some over the summer, and he was even better when I saw him this weekend. Essentially a point guard. He handled pressure well while still being to communicate to his teammates what to do. Didn’t take many shots, took advantage of what the defense gave him when making plays. What was the most impressive to me was his ball screen game. Whenever he came off the screen he was very poised, and he controlled his primary defender and made the correct play. He had lots of good passes to the roll man where the defense couldn’t get to it. Always love when a kid knows how to stop short and pull up the mid range. Usually that is always a good sign of feel and IQ.
“Mr. Play the Right Way”: Jackson Peakes, 2021 St. John’s
Being the senior leader on the team and losing their starting point guard, Jackson now has to take on just about every role imaginable for this St. John’s team. He took pride in that, and did it in fashion. He handled pressure and played point guard assisting his teammates, being a floor general telling players where to go. He scored the ball, made catch and shoot shots as well as showed good body control and positioning to create a little space to get to his shot off the bounce. He rebounded; defended the other team’s best player; scrapped got on the floor and played hard… all while playing the entire game basically (they only had 6). It was refreshing to see Peakes do it all for his team, and compete and battle every possession he was out there.