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California tournaments recaps

7/11/2011

Here is a look at some of the players who stood out during the Pangos Sweet 16 in Long Beach, Calif., and the Double Pump Tip-Off in Los Angeles over the weekend.

Standout players

Parker Jackson-Cartwright
(Los Angeles/Loyola)
2014, PG, 5-foot-7, 140 pounds

He has been the most dominant player regardless of class in Southern California. Although he doesn't possess prototypical size for the next level, he is the region's best basketball player. His savvy, skill and quickness are uncanny. It's early, but he is the best point guard, at this stage, that we have seen since Baron Davis laced them up at Crossroads High School. USC became his first offer this weekend.

Isaac Hamilton (Los Angeles/ Crenshaw)
2013, SG, 6-4, 170 pounds

There might not be a more polished scoring guard out west than the versatile Hamilton. He impacts the game on multiple levels, especially on the offensive end. His jump shot was flowing this week, and he has a terrific pull-up game as well. What sets him apart from most is his feel (great passer) for the game.

Christian Wood (Palmdale, Calif./Findlay Prep)
2013, PF, 6-9, 200 pounds
College: UNLV

Wood dazzles most onlookers with his feathery shooting touch. His stroke is smooth, and he has impressive range. At times he even dips inside with some high-level finishes. He is young for his grade and his upside is immense, but he needs to play with greater energy and utilize his size more often to diversify his game.

Drew Bender (Phoenix/ Pinnacle)
2013, SG, 6-4, 190 pounds

Bender is one of the better combo guards out west. He has a solid frame with good length and tremendous savvy. His jump shot is smooth, and he gets great lift on it as well. He doesn't possess great quickness, but he is exceptional in transition where he nailed a number of jump shots and handed out quite a few assists. The bottom line -- he is a winner.

Rosco Allen (Las Vegas/ Bishop Gorman)
2012, SF, 6-9, 210 pounds

Allen continues to exhibit why he is easily one of the top five prospects in the West for his class. He might struggle guarding quicker/stronger 4-men at the next level, but he'll be a handful to stop on the other end. He is a terror in transition, where he can knock down the 3-point shot, hand out the nifty assist or dunk over the competition. With added strength, he should be in the NBA lottery within a few years.

Jaron Hopkins (Chandler, Ariz./Basha)
2013, SG/WF, 6-4, 180 pounds

Hopkins doesn't have a true position, but he is a talent. He is super explosive in transition and he attacks the offensive glass as well, usually ending up with an awe-inspiring tip-jam. He handles the ball well in transition and is a terrific passer off the dribble. He needs to quicken his release on his shot and make it smoother, but the talent is there to be a high-major recruit.

London Perrantes (Encino, Calif./Crespi)
2013, PG, 5-11, 155 pounds

Perrantes runs the Double Pump offense like a seasoned college point guard. The lack of burst and overall quickness are concerns for the next level, but he changes speeds exceptionally well and his head is always up monitoring the defense. He can knock down the 3-point shot and is always on balance. He is terrific in a pick-and-roll set, and overall there are not too many point guards, regardless of class, who manage a game as well as he does.

Ben Carter (Las Vegas/Bishop Gorman)
2012, PF, 6-7, 215 pounds

Carter is a stretch 4-man with a high basketball IQ and the skills to match. He can step out and hit the 17-foot jump shot with regularity, and he can finish with either hand in the paint area. He displayed toughness and finished through contact consistently throughout the tournament. UNLV, Cal, Oregon, Arizona State and Portland were some of the schools monitoring his progress.

Breakout players

Kenny Martin (Glendale, Ariz./Raymond Kellis)
2012, PF, 6-9, 210 pounds

After watching Martin, it's no surprise Arizona State, Syracuse, Saint Mary's, USC, Nevada and Oregon State are intrigued by the athletic 4-man. His length, bounce and ability to knock down the 18-foot jump shot are impressive, and he is just scratching the surface of his potential. With added strength and continued skill work, he has the makings of a certain top-100 prospect in the country.

Darren Smith (La Jolla, Calif./La Jolla Prep)
2011, 6-7, 200 pounds

He is somewhat of an enigma considering which schools (Ontario/Colony, Henderson/Impact and now La Jolla Prep) he has been enrolled at, but he is a talent. He has the frame and athleticism to play at the high-major level. His perimeter skills are still in their infantile stage, but he attacks the offensive glass, can handle the ball in transition and can stick the 3-point shot.

Surprise players

Sheldon Blackwell
(Rancho Cucamonga, Calif./Etiwanda)
2013, PG, 6-5, 175 pounds

Blackwell is a consistent jump shot away from being a high-level player. He handles the ball exceptionally well and is a terrific passer. His length, big hands and ability to get to the rim are exceptional, and he still has much room for growth. If he can smooth out his jump shot and add a midrange pull-up, his upside is immense.

Jalen Richard (Queen Creek, Ariz./Perry)
2013, SG, 6-2, 175 pounds

Richard was one of the catalysts who led his team to the championship. He knocked down a number of deep jumpers and drove hard to the basket. His jump shot looks Division I-ready, and he has the athleticism to finish at the rim. He'll definitely be monitored by the Big Sky, Big West and WAC these coming seasons.

Caleb Carter (Las Vegas/ Valley)
2012, PF, 6-6, 215 pounds

Each season Nevada produces a few sleepers, and Carter is no exception. The undersized 4-man is an inside-out threat, and he competes with a considerable amount of energy at both ends. He's an excellent rebounder due to his length and bounce, and he can attack off the dribble as well. Most importantly, he produces each and every game.

Notes

• There are not many club teams in America that play as hard as the California Supreme. They took home the Double Pump Tip-Off Gold championship due to the all-around efforts of 6-5 junior Roschon Prince (Long Beach, Calif./Poly), 6-4 senior Julian Harrell (Los Angeles/Loyola), 6-4 senior Marqueze Coleman (Mission Hills, Calif./Alemany), 5-10 senior Jacob Hazzard (Los Angeles/Loyola) and 6-5 Daddy Ugbede (Prep).

• Coach Jeff de Laveaga of the Arizona Magic Pump N Run program has done a nice job corralling some of the better prospects in the state, including 6-5 sophomore Sam Jones (Mesa/Gilbert Christian), 6-2 junior Jalen Brown (Mesa./Mountain Pointe), 6-1 sophomore Casey Benson (Tempe, Ariz./Corona Del Sol) and 6-1 sophomore Tate de Laveaga (Scottsdale/Horizon).

• Double Pump 2013's championship run was led by Perrantes, 5-10 Jahmel Taylor (Chatsworth, Calif./Sierra Canyon), 6-5 Keonta Vernon(Tulare, Calif./Tulare Union), 6-5 Devon Plueger (San Juan Capistrano, Calif./JSerra) and Lamond Murray (Torrance, Calif./Bishop Montgomery).

• Tim Kempton, a 6-8 junior out of Phoenix, has improved since the April evaluation period. He still needs to get better finishing though contact, but his touch out to 17 feet is impressive.

• One of the more promising point guards out west is 6-1 junior Brandon Randolph (Play Del Rey, Calif./St. Bernards). He is more scorer than facilitator at this stage, but he does have the savvy to thread the needle with his passing.

• In addition to Martin and Bender, the Arizona Aces also received outstanding performances from a slew of 2013 prospects from the same high school (Scottsdale, Ariz./Chaparral) in 6-8 Joe Boyd, 6-4 Josh Braun and 6-5 Eric Conklin.

• He doesn't get the most attention, but 6-foot-3 junior Michael Garcia (Play Del Rey, Calif./St. Bernard) projects to being one of the elite 2-guards out west for his class. Garcia has a great feel for the game as demonstrated by his innate passing ability, and he can score in a variety of ways.

• IEBP has a solid group of 2013 prospects in Blackwell, 6-5 Justin Snavely (Highland, Calif./Citrus Valley) and 6-1 Alfred Brown (Upland, Calif.). Snavely is a lengthy left-hander who can stretch the defense with his perimeter stroke that extends out to 23 feet, while Brown is an intriguing combo-guard with a soft shooting stroke.

Joel Francisco is a recruiting coordinator for ESPN Recruiting.