2021 Pangos Frosh/Soph Midwest Recap!!!!!
There was a lot of talent at the Park District in LaGrange, Illinois. Dinos Trigonis once again put together a talented group from the Midwest and places beyond. Lots of players showed their wares and their talent. Here's my superlatives:
BEST PLAYER: James Brown, Class of 2024 6'9" forward, St Rita(Chicago)- Co-MVP of the Top 30 game showed a lot more to his game this weekend. Might be my #1 player in my next update. He showed an improving three point shot, attacking off the bounce from the perimeter, protected the rim, rebounded, and passed out of the post. In other words, he showed all aspects of the game of basketball this weekend. National level player with a multitude of scholarship offers, game is starting to catch up to his potential. I was very impressed over the weekend.
TOP PLAYER FROM CENTRAL ILLINOIS: Dekwon Brown, Class of 2024 6'3" point guard Limestone Community(Bartonville)- I came to this event to watch the Central Illinois players for the first time, and for the most part they did not disappoint. Let's start with Brown who was co-mvp of the Top 30 game. He scored on long threes and attacks to the basket, with a variety of finishes. Euro step, layups with left and right hand. Played tough on the defensive end of the court. Did all these things the entire weekend and showed good consistency in his play. Looked like the next big time star from the talent rich Peoria area.
OWNED THE PAINT AREA: Jaheem Webber, Class of 2024 6'9" forward, Normal Community(IL)- Just destroyed everyone in his path in the painted area. Scored on power dunks, up and under moves, jump hooks on both blocks, nice step out 15 foot jumper, and rebounded out of his area. Was here only on Sunday and made the Top 30 game. Did very well in match-up with highly touted Jaden Smith of Lincoln Park(Chicago). His Dad told me in the lobby to expect a big time performance and he delivered.
BIG TIME SWAGGER: Payton Kamin, DPaul College Prep(Chicago), Class of 2024 6'6" wing- This could go to a number of players but this young man stood out. Exploded for 16 points in the second half of the Top 30 game with a number of three pointers. Standout three point shooter, could be the best in the state. He hits them on step backs, catch and shoot, one dribble side steps. Kamin has improved his driving to the basket and finishing with Euro steps. Look for a jump in production this year with the Rams.
BIG TIME SWAGGGER TWO: Cole Hansen, Class of 2024 6'4" guard, Wauwatosa West(Milwaukee, WI)- Had to mention this young man as he hit a boatload of three pointers this weekend, whether off the dribble, or catch and shoot. He put those three fingers up every time he hit one, and looked at the defender like" Why are you attempting to guard me"? Showed he could finish at the rim too. Consistent performances all weekend and played well in Top 30 game.
OTHER 2024 OUT OF STATE STANDOUTS:
Ryan Larson, Class of 2024 6'3" combo guard, Jamestown(ND)- The pride of North Dakota showed he belonged by making the Top 30 game. He scored in double figures every game of the weekend. He scored on threes, strong finishes in the paint, and finishing on the break. He also showed he could play point guard and read the pick and roll very well from that position. Very strong young man who showed surprising quickness and proved he belonged with the big dawgs. I would venture to say he's the best player in his class in the Dakotas. Will go anywhere to play against top competition. One for division one coaches to watch outside of the Dakotas.
Rashad Williams, Class of 2024 6'6" forward, Bartlett(TN)- Athletic player who finished well at the rim on post ups and rim runs. Scored off the dribble in the full court game and rebounded at a high rate.
KJ Windham, Class of 2024 6'3" guard, Ben Davis(Indianapolis, IN)- The most impressive out of state player I saw. He will be big time as he did it all on the court. Hit threes, slashed to the basket and dunked on guys, scored on Euro Steps, jumped in passing lanes for steals and dunks. Rebounded his position well. Big time athlete with big time game. Productive yet great upside for future success.
Dhani Flannigan, Class of 2024 5'10" point guard, Franklin Central(Indianapolis,IN)- Football body and knows how to use it. Scored at the basket with his strength which belied his short stature. Uncanny ability to score at the rim with great body control and physicality over bigger players. That's not all, he showed he has a big time three point shot either off the bounce or catch and shoot. Young man also showed he can create for other with passes to open three point shooters in their shooting pocket. Played in Top 60 game.
Zevin Gadson, Class of 2024 6'3" guard, Buchtel(Akron,OH)- Big time slasher and finisher at the rim. Serviceable three point shot as well. Good ball handler and excellent finisher in transition. Played in Top 60 game.
Manasseh (MJ) Stackhouse Jr, Class of 2024 6'6" forward, Indian Trail Academy(Kenosha,WI)- Dominated the paint area with strong post up baskets, nice dunks, and rebounding on both ends of the court. High energy player who runs the floor for baskets, blocks shots, and defends pick and roll very well. Made Top 60 game.
OTHER ILLINOIS CLASS OF 2024 STANDOUTS!!!
Morez Johnson Jr, Class of 2024 6'9" forward, St Rita(Chicago)- My #1 player in the class did not disappoint. He scored from three, of the dribble, finishing at the rim with dunks, rebounding on both ends of the court. Once again showed he can guard players on the perimeter or on the block. Big time rim protector(how are teams going to score on St Rita in the paint?). Played in Top 30 game.
Jaden Smith, Class of 2024 6'9" forward, Lincoln Park(Chicago)- My #3 player recovered from being outplayed by Jaheem Webber to being solid the rest of the weekend. He scored the step back three, scoring off the bounce, rebounding, and elite rim protecting. Big time upside for the future as he showed flashes of the monster he could become. Made Top 30 game.
Calvin Robbins Jr, Class of 2024 6'4" wing, Kenwood Academy(Chicago)- King of bounce as he was dunking everything and on anybody in his way. Big time athlete who gets out in transition and finishes strong at the cup. Showed good ball handling skills and a nice outside shot, but he's best off the bounce and at the rim. Made Top 30 game.
Kenric Mosby, Class of 2024 6'7" wing, Simeon Career Academy(Chicago)- Another one through the pipeline at Simeon as he can do it all from the wing position. He scores at the rim attacking off the dribble, can hit threes, and guard three wing positions. Hits the glass with authority using his athleticism and long arms. Played in Top 30 game.
Jason Jakstys, Class of 2024 6'8" forward, Yorkville- Played well at the basket by rim protecting, scoring on the block, rebounding, and hitting the 15 foot shot. Runs the floor well in transition. Made Top 30 game.
Jonathan Calmese, Class of 2024 6'0" point guard, Farragut Academy(Chicago)- Next great player at Farragut? He can do it all, score from three, mid range, and attacking the basket. Strong defender who gets into opposing point guards kitchen and wrecks it. Good passer in the half court and off the fast break. One to watch for in the Chicago Public League Red North/West. Made Top 60 game.
Top 2025 players:
Melvin Bell, Class of 2025 6'4" guard, St Rita(Chicago)- Fearless at attacking the basket. Can hit the outside jumper out to three. Gets after it on the defensive end of the court. Look for him to contribute to varsity this year. Made Top 30 game.
Antonio Munoz, Class of 2025 6'4" wing, Whitney Young(Chicago)- Athletic, slasher, dunker, big time run and jump athlete who thrives in transition. Showed a serviceable jumper this weekend and good ball handling to get to where he wants on the court. Made Top 30 game.
Bryce Heard, Class of 2025 6'6" wing, Kenwood Academy(Chicago)- Athletic and very skilled wing who can shoot threes, create off the dribble and finish at the rim. Versatility to guard four positions on the high school level. Will fight his way into the rotation for a very talented Broncos team this year. Made Top 30 game.
Ian Militec, Class of 2025 6'5" point guard, Rolling Meadows- Yes I think his position will eventually be point guard. He played the position well all weekend by creating for himself and others. Showed a very good three point shoot, along with nice Euro step finishes at the rim. Made Top 30 game.
Justin Bowen Jr, Class of 2025 6'3" wing, Lincoln Park(Chicago)- Big time slasher and finisher at the rim who can also hit the three point shot. He's best at finishing at the rim and being disruptive as a defender. Rebounds well for his position. Good at scoring in transition. Made Top 60 game.
Vincas Buzelis, Class of 2025, 6'3" point guard,Hinsdale Central(Darien)- Showed he could play point by being a distributor, penetrating to the paint and making plays by scoring, and setting up teammates. Hit three point shots all weekend. Made Top 60 game.
Jonas Johnson, Class of 2025, 6'5" wing, DePaul College Prep(Chicago)- Pure shooting stroke from three point range. Can also attach off the bounce and finish at the rim. Ball handling is good enough to run point. Rebounded on both ends and defended other wings.
Davion Hannah, Class of 2025 6'4" guard, Milwaukee Academy of Science(WI)- Athletic finisher at the rim who can also knock down threes at a high rate. Was able to get to whatever spot he wanted to on the floor all weekend. Big time slasher to the basket who can make outside shots to keep defenses honest. Very impressive in the Top 30 game
Top players who did not make either all-star game:
Deng Gai, Class of 2024 6'2" guard Lincoln(Des Moines,IA)
Gianni Cobb, Class of 2024 5'9" point guard, Bloom Township(Chicago Heights)
Josh Pickett, Class of 2024 6'4" point guard, Aurora(West)
Joey Cabana, Class of2024 6'2" guard, Chelsea(MI)
Askia Bullie, Class of 2024 5'10" point guard, Westinghouse(Chicago)
Andre Blakeley Jr, Class of 2024 6'0" point guard, Larkin(Elgin)
Antoine Glasper, Class of 2024 6'0" point guard, Collins(Chicago)
Timothy Winkler III, Class of 2026 6'8" forward, All Saints Academy(Naperville,IL)- Played in Top 30 game. Looked like the youngest player in the camp(which he was). He played well enough to deserve a spot in the game the rest of the camp. Showed a post up game, a good mid range shot, rebounded, and did not back down from anyone. Played against guys that were 2-3 years older then he is. Bright future and there will be fight amongst local high schools for his services.