Five More Players to Watch

December, 8, 2010
12/08/10
6:50
PM ET
Most local high school basketball fans are already familiar with the exploits of Pat Connaughton, Dennis Clifford, Khem Birch and the many stalwarts at St. Mark's and Tilton. But as we await the first tip-off of the 2010-2011 MIAA season, here are five more players to keep an eye on, with evaluations courtesy of Scouts, Inc.:

Jules Tavares, 6-3, SG, Sr.
Hometown: New Bedford
School: New Bedford
Scout's Take:
Strengths:
Tavares is a productive two-way player who already understands the importance of impacting the game defensively. He is a terrific athlete with good size and quickness for his position that allows him to be a terrific on-the-ball defender, both pressuring the ball for the entire length of the court and also locking up the opposition's best perimeter scorer in the quarter court. Offensively, Tavares is a driving scorer who has a quick first step to the rim and good bounce and body control finishing inside a congested lane. He has a naturally soft shooting touch and also instinctively knows how to create space in the mid-range area.
Weaknesses:
Tavares feel for the game is still a work in progress offensively. He can be a bit of a "kamakazi driver" at times, forcing low percentage plays off the bounce and consequently being a little turnover prone. He would do well to also expand his general ball skills, as ability to handle and pass the ball could stand to improve, especially against pressure. While Tavares has a soft touch on his jumper, he has a tendency to short-arm his release and would be a much more consistent shooter if he finished the stroke with more consistency.
Bottom Line:
Tavares is a talented player and high level athlete who makes his impact felt on both sides of the ball. He is a terrific on the ball defender and accomplished slashing scorer who needs to continue developing his ball skills and basketball I.Q. in order to maximize his potential.
Joe Bramanti, 6-1, SG, Sr.
Hometown: Andover
High School: Andover
Scout's Take:
Strengths:
As physically tough and hard-nosed as they come, Bramanti is a role player extraordinaire who coaches will love and opposing players will hate. A natural competitor with a chiseled frame, Bramanti is a very good defensive player who guards the opposition%u2019s best player on a nightly basis and never gives away anything easy. He can play either guard position offensively, make open shots from the perimeter, attacks the rim hard to play through contact, and has a very soft mid-range touch.
Weaknesses:
Bramanti is more of a two-guard than a point and lacks ideal size or athleticism. He can struggle to handle the ball against aggressive pressure from quicker players and isn%u2019t nearly as consistent of a shooter when rushed. He rarely plays above the rim and is only a role player offensively. He would do well to further develop his ball-handling skills in order to be a more consistent secondary ball-handler at the next level.
Bottom Line:
Pretty skilled and tough as can be, Bramanti is the type of player who will help a team win games at the next level. He may not be a point guard or end up scoring a lot of points, but he can change the game defensively and raise the intensity level of those around him.
Cornelius Tyson, 6-1, PG, Soph.
Hometown: Springfield
School: Springfield Central
Scout's Take:
Strengths:
A talented young point guard who already has a good understanding of how to distribute the basketball. Tyson has terrific court vision at a young age, makes good decisions handling and passing the ball against pressure, and can also get into the lane to create shots for himself and his teammates. He has also developed into a consistent shooter from behind the three-point arc. He has a terrific feel for the game for such a young player, already making good use of jab steps, jump stops, and other crafty maneuvers to open up passing/driving lanes.
Weaknesses:
A simple lack of experience may be Tyson's biggest limitation at the moment, as he really only needs more time playing and competing against a high level of competition for his game to mature to the next level. As his body continues to grow and get stronger he should become a better finisher inside the lane, but will also need to become a more disciplined defender.
Bottom Line:
A talented young player who has an instinctive feel for seeing the floor and passing the ball, Tyson is unique because he projects as a pure point guard who has the size and skills to make plays for himself and others.
Adam Bramanti, 5-10, PG, Jr.
Hometown: Topsfield
School: Masconomet
Scout's Take:
Strengths:
A very skilled guard with a high basketball I.Q. and terrific feel for the game, Bramanti is well schooled in the fundamentals of the game. He is an excellent three-point shooter who makes shots with deep range and also changes speeds with his dribble to get himself into the lane. He is a very efficient scorer off the catch, being tremendously efficient with his body movements, and owning a terrific shot fake. He always has his head up, has very good court vision, and can deliver quick passes off the dribble with a quick flick of his wrist.
Weaknesses:
Size and strength are Bramanti's biggest weaknesses right now as he can be physically overwhelmed by a higher level of competition. He can be rattled into speeding up his game when pressured by those more physical guards and would also do well to play lower to the ground when attacking off the dribble. He works defensively but doesn't own blinding quickness and can be overpowed in certain match-ups.
Bottom Line:
Bramanti is tremendously skilled and cerebral with a very efficient game. He shoots it with range, finds his teammates, and makes plays off the catch and the dribble. While his upside may ultimately be limited by his physical gifts, he is definitely maximizing his abilities.
Jared Terrell, 6-1, SG, Soph.
Hometown: Weymouth
School: Weymouth
Scout's Take:
Strengths:
Tarrell is a power guard with a strong body and bouncy athleticism. He is as aggressive as he is powerful, getting after people on the defensive end and going hard to the rim offensively. He is a versatile defender who can make plays in full court pressure situations and also lock up opposing scorers in the half-court, bodying up with his upper body without fouling. Offensively, he has a good first step and quick springs and shows no fear attacking shot blockers.
Weaknesses:
The two major questions about Terrell are his size for his position and the consistency of his jump shot. At the moment, he is an undersized two-guard who would need to develop not only his ball skills but also his basketball I.Q. and feel for the game in order to see any time at the point. He also must become more of a shooting threat from the perimeter as defenders are able to give him a big cushion because his drive is so predictable at the moment.
Bottom Line:
Terrell is a physically gifted guard who plays hard and makes plays on both ends of the floor. Moving forward his stock will rise according to how well his ball skills progress.


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