Posted On: 06/30/17 8:39 AM
After two days of fiercely competitive basketball, Detroit Wayne Memorial (MI) returns back to the Motor City after stealing a summer league championship from the hometown Toledo competitors. Last night, Wayne Memorial beat the two Toledo City League favorites for next season (Waite and Rogers) in consecutive games to remain undefeated in the league.
Now, it’s time for our final couple pieces of recap coverage from the inaugural summer league. To start, we’re recognizing the First Team All Tournament.
There are a couple of parameters to go over: 1) you had to advance past the first round of the tournament and 2) in a league where every team played four-out and one-in, were awarding four perimeter players and one forward.
Check in later for stock-riser articles that will award the other prospects who stepped up over the past two days.
First Team All Tournament
PG- Rashad Williams (2018), 6’2″-6’3″, Detroit Wayne Memorial
PG- Carl Banks (2018), 5’7”, Toledo Waite
G- Caleb Smith (2020), 6’4”, Toledo Rogers
W- Christian Smith (2018), 6’5”-6’6”, Toledo Rogers
F- Cartier Muse-Suber (2019), 6’4”, Detroit Wayne Memorial
Rashad Williams because … he was easily the most valuable player in the league. Williams truly led Wayne Memorial to an undefeated record in this summer league. His passing ability, whether it was full-court outlets to a full-speed wing or a simple extra pass to the corner three, was contagious throughout their roster. But when the time came, Williams splashed home a ton of triples, including eight of them in the 70-53 championship win over Waite. His shooting ability doesn’t waver based on pull-up or catch-and-shoot, as his compact release is very consistent.
Also, Williams showed leadership skills, as he was vocal and competed extremely hard on the defensive end of the floor. His lateral movement allows him to defend full-court, which will help with his slight height disadvantage at the Division I level. Additionally, although Williams had his worst performance to date in the semifinal against Rogers, he still gutted it out and sank home both ends of a one-and-one to give Wayne Memorial a one-point lead with about 15 seconds remaining in the game. Those shots by Williams put them up 51-50, which held up as the final score.
Carl Banks because … his shooting range and overall scoring ability was borderline unbelievable last night. Banks was hitting step backs and pull-ups from the volleyball line consistently. While we’ve seen Banks do so in warmups and such, his aggressiveness from way out there had a huge effect in an actual game situation as it opened up the floor, which led to finishes on backdoor cuts and hesitation moves. At the basket, Banks is the epitome of crafty, which is necessary with his height — we came away especially impressed with a double-clutch finish with the off-hand that involved spin off the glass.
Banks again proved to us that he’s an underrated college prospect. While he’s definitely a score-first 5’7” guy who is most effective as the primary ball-handler, he’s instant offense and nearly impossible for defenders to stay in front of.
Caleb Smith because … his three-point shooting and ball security almost sparked the upset over Wayne Memorial in the semifinal round. Smith looked like NBA player Nick Young out there, in the way he was swishing home unbalanced three-pointers. Until the final five minutes, Smith couldn’t miss, as he even dropped home a contested 30-footer to beat the first half buzzer. If he can hit that shot, and continue to prove capable as a primary ball-handler against defensive pressure, Smith could progress into a low-major prospect. He has great size, but needs to work on remaining balanced in the lane when he gets bumped. He didn’t turn the ball over, but needs to tighten up his handle. All of his slight flaws are fixable. Will be interesting to see if Smith progress going forward.
Christian Smith because … nobody really shut him down in any of the games during the tournament. With a lack of opposing 6’4”-6’6” wings to defend Smith, he took advantage by sticking home jumpers over heads and going straight to the rim. While we would’ve liked to see Smith never hesitate with double-clutches at the basket, he did make the adjustment late against Wayne Memorial and got to the rim. We were also impressed with his leadership, as every time a Rogers player hit the floor, he’d rush over to help them up and was urging his teammates to follow suit. Smith does need to rebound better though.
Muse-Suber because … there wasn’t a more impactful forward in the tournament. Wayne Memorial runs a lot of offensive sets for the guards, but Muse-Suber’s role as the forward was filled excellently. Whether it was setting firm screens as guards cut around the baseline, fighting for a loose ball on defense, or sprinting the floor on the break, Muse-Suber did his job. The stocky athlete also rebounds very well. Yesterday, he even made plays from the top of the key while their plays were developing closer to the basket. Muse-Suber is always going to impact the game on the fast-break, as most other forwards won’t keep up with him; but if he can continue showing those ball-skills and control the glass, he’ll become a real college basketball prospect.