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June 18, 2012
Fantastic 15: Top showings at NBPA
The 2012 edition of the NBPA Top 100 Camp has come and gone. After taking a day to reflect on the action in Charlottesville, Rivals.com has put together a 15-player All-NBPA team. Usually, 15 players for an All-Camp team might be excessive. However, the level of talent on display dictates that we go a little deeper.
Cliff Alexander: The rising junior from Chicago continued his outstanding grassroots season with a strong showing at NBPA. At this point, he is a bit more of a center than a power forward and needs to continue to work on his footwork and overall skill level to truly unlock his vast potential.
Anthony Barber: "Cat" was one of the top three players in camp all weekend and has taken his game to a new level. He's still quite lean, but has added a bit more strength. He's been shooting from the perimeter much better to complement his blazing speed and quickness.
Aquille Carr: The sub six-footer can make a coach pull out his hair at times with an ill-advised decision. But, the Seton Hall-bound point guard is a gifted talent with serious ballhandling ability and athleticism. Despite his lack of size, he proved that he could score against bigger guys and he shot the ball reasonably well.
Stevie Clark: A scorer by trade, Clark altered his game and played as more of a traditional setup guy the first few days of camp. He set things up, initiated the offense, played defense and kept the ball moving. During the playoffs, Clark's ability as a scorer allowed him to take over offensively as well while he led his team to a camp title.
Zena Edosomwan: The coaches at Harvard have to be doing back flips over pulling this one off. The 6-foot-8 prep school-bound big man is a brute on the blocks and plays with loads of fire and intensity. He rebounded, he ran the floor, he intimidated physically and he'll be an impact player for the Crimson.
Anton Gill: There's no mistaking what Gill wants to do when he gets the ball. The 6-foot-4 four-star wing is an attacking driver who is looking to get to the rim and make things happen. If he can't get to the rim, he's a pretty good pullup shooter and he has the tools to defend. Gill does need to work on his off hand.
Brannen Greene: So far this spring, Greene has been somewhat lost in the shadow of five-star Florida Rams teammates Chris Walker and Kasey Hill.In Charlottesville, the well-developed, 6-foot-6 wing scorer proved to be one of the single most skilled wing scorers. Not only does he shoot with range, but Greene has an advanced feel for using his body to create an advantage against less physical players. It was a good weekend for the Kansas commitment.
Andrew Harrison: The 6-foot-5 point guard from Houston easily gets Rivals.com's vote for best player in Charlottesville. Nobody else in the class of 2013 can dominate the game without taking a shot like he can and it's clear that he's out there to compete. While some other kids are worried about trading Twitter handles, Harrison is trading scowls and physical punishment on his way to the hoop.
Kuran Iverson: One of the top 3-5 players in camp, the 6-foot-8 forward has put in a lot of work on his game over the last year. A gifted ballhandler who can cause matchup nightmares by playing as a big three or crafty four, Iverson was awfully tough for many defenders to contain. A sneaky athlete with length, Iverson is trending up.
Kevon Looney: He's not the fastest guy from end to end. There are guyswho jump higher and there are forwards with more lateral quickness than the rising junior from Milwaukee. But, there are few forward prospects in the country with his feel for the game, overall skill and nose for corralling loose rebounds, whether they are in or out of his area on the floor. He's another combo forward who creates matchup problems.
Tyler Roberson: Prior to camp, we wrote about how we were anxious to get another look at the 6-foot-7 forward. Turns out he's continued to get better in the last year and much like Looney and Iverson, Roberson has the ability to cause matchup problems as a three- or four-man. An exceptional shooter from between 12-17 feet, Roberson is also an adroit transition finisher and rebounder.
D'Angelo Russell: Everybody knew the 6-foot-3 guard from Louisville could score. But seeing him run the point with poise and precision wasn't only a pleasant surprise, it was an indicator of future success for him. If he doesn't grow anymore, Russell has good, not great, size for a two-guard. But, if he can play some point as well, he increases his already strong value to a team.
Noah Vonleh: Like many young big men with perimeter skills, Vonleh sometimes will float outside. But when he's got it rolling at his best, the No. 2 player in the class of 2014 establishes himself as a skilled, back-to-the-basket, low-post scorer. Then, once defenses pack the lane on him or cheat with help defenders, he can burn teams with his exceptional passing or move away from the hoop and play facing the basket.
Nigel Williams-Goss: One of the most selfless players in the country, Williams-Goss really buys into the team and doing whatever he can do to contribute. He plays three positions on the perimeter, locks down defensively and can be a much better scorer than given credit for. Bottom line, he's a competitor and winner.
Dominic Woodson: A top-30 player in the class of 2013, Woodson backed up that lofty status in Charlottesville. A throwback big who likes to trade elbows, throw hip checks and use his physicality, Woodson has a level of skill that matches his strength. Not saying that he's on the Zach Randolph-level, but his size, body and ability to hit faceup and turnaround jumpers at a high level are very reminiscent of a young Randolph.