Posted On: 10/24/18 10:48 AM
Below is the 2nd team from the Battle in Bullhead. These prospects played at a high level and a number of the guys represented the local community well.
Battle in Bullhead: 2nd Team
Aaron RIce 5’11 PG/SG 2020 Ironwood
Rice shot the basketball at a high level throughout the event. Further, he is crafty and gets into the 2nd level of the defense well. While at that level, he makes good decisions with the basketball.
On the defensive end, he guarded the top player on the opposing team in each game. He moved his feet well and took a lot of pride in limiting that player’s playmaking efforts. Rice has a high basketball IQ and does a lot of the little things that other guards do not do.
Chris Flores 5’7 PG 2020 Mohave
Flores is another local prospect who really made a name for himself at the event. While he preferred to go left and needs to work on being just as comfortable with both hands, he made great decisions with the basketball and was elusive.
He has a really nice in and out. His change of pace on the move freezes the defender and allows him to go from 0-100 immediately. This creates separation and forces the help side to come. Despite being undersized, he finished around the rim well and lived at the foul line. Flores played extremely well and should play a huge role for Mohave this upcoming season.
Jacob Leslie 6’5 PF/C 2020 MALC
Leslie might have been the best big man at the event. He had solid footwork and patience on the block. Further, he finished well around the rim and was able to bully the defender underneath the rim on multiple occasions. In addition to finishing well on the block, Leslie showed an improved and confident mid-range jumper. His ability to connect from mid-range and extend his game will aid him in taking his game to another level.
On the defensive end, Leslie provided his team with someone who was able to protect the rim. While this event saw a lot of guards, Leslie was one of the taller prospects at the event. Thus, his ability to rotate and make shots difficult for the opposing guards was a huge plus for his team.
Nathan Lawsen 5’11 PG 2019 Kingman
Lawsen started out a little slow at the event, but as he gained confidence, he let the basketball fly at a high level. In fact, he had multiple games with over 3 three pointers. Moreover, he is far from a space catch and shoot shooter. He has good size and ball handling skills which got him to his spots on the floor.
He predominately went left. However, he did show an ability to get into the paint and make solid reads with the basketball. Defensively, he communicated well and competed. He took pride in being able to guard opposing guards. He did struggle at times with guarding quicker guards, but for the most part, he was solid on that end of the floor as well.
Malik Smith 6’3 SG/SF 2019 Ironwood
Smith did not play in the last game and a half as well as the top 20 game due to an ankle injury. However, prior to injuring his ankle, he was the most productive wing at the event. He has a rare mixture of strength, size, athleticism, and skill that made it extremely difficult for opposing teams to guard him.
At times, he even ran the point for his team. Opposing guards were too little to guard him due to his ability to play bully basketball and get to wherever he needed to get to on the floor. Opposing wings struggled as well as they were not quick enough to stay in front. Further, Smith shot the basketball well from deep. If he is able to continue to do that, he has a bright future and could see himself playing at the next level.