Evaluating Jack Gibbs, Tyler Cavanaugh, Moses Kingsley, and More in the Reese’s College All-Star Game

April 1, 2017

By Alan Lu

On Friday, the 2017 Reese’s College All-Star Game took place in Phoenix, Arizona, the site of where they will hold the Final Four for tomorrow’s games.  There were many strong performances abound as quite a handful of players were able to put their skills on full display.  The game itself was played at a frenetic pace, but it was a one-sided affair in favor of the East.  Still, it was very fun to watch, as there were several notable players that stood out as having played really well in this contest.  Here are my thoughts on various prospects that played in this game, as well as how they rate as prospects for the NBA.

Davidson’s senior point guard, Jack Gibbs shot the ball really well, as he primarily excelled as a shooter and scorer for the East.  He also showcased good playmaking and defensive skills, as he played terrific basketball in this All-Star game.  Gibbs did a terrific job of making threes from beyond the arc.  He has a lot of range on his shot, and he can make threes off the catch, dribble, as well as off of pin downs.  He also is a smart basketball player that managed to draw three free throws as he was fouled on a three another time.

Plus, he also showed off good playmaking skills.  Gibbs threw crisp, accurate passes, as he did a very good job of throwing interior passes to set up scores for his teammates.  He would find the open man off the dribble, and sometimes he would use a shot fake in the process.  Also, Gibbs played good defense, as he managed to jump a pass to collect a steal in this game.  In general, Jack Gibbs played very well, as he is an excellent shooter that can make plenty of threes in bunches.  He may be flying under the radar as a prospect, but his jump shot may give him a fair chance to make it to the NBA.

George Washington’s senior big man, Tyler Cavanaugh put forth a strong showing, as he excelled as a scorer and rebounder in a win for the East, as he was named MVP of that squad in this game.  Cavanaugh showed off very good low post scoring skills.  He is a mobile big man that possesses solid footwork and shooting touch down low, as he was able to score on a nifty up and under move, and he also can draw numerous fouls upon opposing defenders.  He also has a pump fake move that he can use to get his man on the air, which can also help him draw fouls on them.

He also showed a solid ability to score on hustle plays. Cavanaugh would run the floor hard, and it resulted in him getting a couple of scores on the break.  Also, he was quite active on the glass, as he managed to draw free throws once off of a put back.  In addition, he shot the ball very well.  Cavanaugh showed off strong shooting skills, as he managed to make a spot up three off the catch, and he also showed a good ability to make mid-range jumpers by knocking one down off the dribble.

He also may possess decent playmaking skills.  Cavanaugh has very good hands to catch passes in traffic, as he would come away with numerous balls that were up for grabs.  But Cavanaugh can sometimes commit careless turnovers, as he threw a pass away that went astray once.  He also did a great job of rebounding the basketball.  Cavanaugh was very active on the glass, as he possesses a terrific motor, and he would come away with tough boards in traffic, as he is a quick leaper that has strong hands and great instincts to come away with many rebounds.  Cavanaugh also defended fairly well, as he managed to jump a pass to almost get a steal.

In this game, Tyler Cavanaugh played very well, as he may be an underrated big man that is a versatile scorer, and he showed great toughness and grit in getting a handful of rebounds amidst crowds.  He really helped himself with a strong showing here in Phoenix, and he could end up being a solid addition to a team’s roster in the NBA.

Arkansas’ senior big man Moses Kingsley also played very well, as he helped lead his team to a blowout win over the West.  He was an active interior presence ends of the floor, and he made numerous impactful plays to help his team get the victory.  Kingsley really excelled at scoring on hustle plays, as he managed to score on numerous put backs, including one where he threw down an emphatic jam after grabbing a quick offensive rebound.

He also showed off good low post scoring skills.  Kingsley possesses very good footwork, and he is a really agile player that can get numerous scores down low.  He managed to use a quick drop step that enabled him to throw down a thunderous dunk.  Another time, he used a quick spin move to get another score, and he drew an extra free throw on that play.

Plus, he also showed off an adequate ability to shoot the basketball.  Kingsley had a knack for making mid-range jumpers off the catch.  He did miss both of his threes, but it is encouraging that he is willing to take them, and if he can knock those down at the NBA level, it could be another solid asset that he can use in his repertoire.

But he may have displayed average at best playmaking skills.  For the positives, Kingsley showed a good willingness to find the open man, and he would find open shooters on occasion.  But he did commit several turnovers, as he struggled to protect the basketball in the post at times, and he also struggled to pass out of a double team on a separate instance when he was trapped.  Kingsley also showed off a solid ability to collect rebounds.  He was quite active at crashing the glass on both ends of the floor, as he possesses great length, athleticism, motor, and instincts to do so.

Also, he showcased great defensive skills.  He is a terrific shot blocker that has possesses incredible timing, and he covers a lot of ground as he managed to swat a couple of shots on drives as well as once off of a cut.  Kingsley also is very quick for a big man, as he excels at jumping passes, as he managed to get a steal and a deflection when he was on the floor.  In general, Moses Kingsley put forth a solid showing, as he played especially well on defense to help get his team the win.  He excelled at making plays on both ends of the court, and he could end up being a solid second round pick for an NBA team in this year’s draft.

Lehigh’s 6-10 senior center, Tim Kempton Jr. had a very good game, as he managed to help get the East a double-digit victory over the West in the Reese’s College All-Star game.  He really excelled as a shooter and scorer on the floor, but he also made good passes throughout this contest.  Kempton displayed a great ability to shoot the basketball.  He really excelled at making spot-up threes and mid-range jumpers off the catch, and his size and shooting skills make it tough for opposing big men to match up to him out on the perimeter.

He also did a very good job of scoring on hustle plays.  Kempton would run the floor to beat his man down the court, and he also showed a knack for scoring on rolls to the rim.  Also, he managed to throw down a dunk off of a fast break drive on the final offensive possession for his team.  Also, he showed a good ability to score in the post.  Kempton possesses a very good shooting touch, and he managed to score on a jump hook once when he was on the block.

Plus, Kempton also displayed very good playmaking skills.  He passed the ball quite well, as he would make a string of solid passes to set up plenty of scoring chances for his team.  He would find shooters from the post, and he also threw an accurate outlet pass, as he is an unselfish player that did a great job of moving the basketball.

Moreover, he showed an adequate ability to rebound the basketball.  While Kempton did not rebound the ball as well as some of the other big men in this game, he was able to haul in his fair share of defensive boards when he was on the floor.  In general, Tim Kempton had a strong showing to help get his team the win, as he did a terrific job of shooting and scoring the basketball, and he made numerous smart plays to help his team get the win.  With his skill set, he could end up being a very good find for a team in the NBA.

Iowa State’s senior guard, Deonte Burton put forth a good performance in his team’s loss to the East in this All-Star game.  He excelled as a scorer and defender when he was on the floor, but he also showed off tremendous athleticism on both ends of the court, as he looked to be the best athlete among all of the players that participated in this contest.

Burton did a very good job of getting scores off the dribble.  He has a quick first step, and he excelled at dunking to get scores on drives to the basket.  He did have a couple of awkward misses in traffic, as he would not always have his balance when he would look to shoot, but Burton can really get past his man to get scores around the hoop.

Plus, he really excelled at finishing plays around the basket.  Deonte Burton is an outstanding athlete as he possesses great strength, leaping skills, and as well as solid speed and quickness, and Burton managed to throw down a couple of exciting, powerful windmill dunks when he was out on the break.

Also, he showed off a decent ability to shoot the basketball.  He showed a good ability to knock down threes, and Burton made a pull up three to get the first basket of the game for either team.  He struggled to make mid-range jumpers consistently, but he did make one pull-up, mid-range jumper after putting some really nifty ball-handling skills on display prior to knocking down that shot.

However, he may have also shown average at best playmaking skills.  Burton did show the willingness to pass the basketball and find the open man.  However, sometimes he would over-penetrate and play too wildly on offense, as he would drive into crowds and end up losing the basketball.  Other times, he would throw inaccurate passes that would be off target, as he can throw them too hard, leading them to sail away out of bounds.

Burton showed off very good defensive skills.  He managed to block a shot in transition, as he timed his leap well to break up an alley-oop that was going to the man he was guarding.  Burton also generally excelled at contesting shots to force misses, and he also knocked a lob pass away to help his team get a steal.  There were a few times where he would struggle to move his feet, leading him to be late on his rotations, but generally Burton did a great job of challenging shots to force misses.  In this game, Deonte Burton had a solid showing, as he played well on both ends of the court.  He has played well all year long, and he could end up being a great find for an NBA team at the next level.

Also, Kentucky’s senior forward, Derek Willis played fairly well, as he showed off versatile scoring skills, rebounded well, and he managed to come away with the MVP award for the West, despite his team losing by double-digits.  Willis showed off a very good ability to score on hustle plays. He would consistently beat his man down court, and he managed to throw down an emphatic jam once in transition.   Plus, he also was quite active at crashing the glass, and he would score on put backs, one of them being a jump hook over a defender.

Also, he showcased decent shooting skills.  Willis managed to use a pivot move to knock down a fadeaway, mid-range jump shot.  He struggled more to consistently make threes, but he did make one off the catch from beyond the arc.  He also rebounded the basketball very well.  He is a long, athletic combination forward that has a great motor as well as ball location skills, and Willis was able to come away with numerous boards on both ends of the floor.

Plus, he also defended well.  Willis showed a good ability to rip balls away from his opponents in the post to get steals, and he showed a good ability to pressure opposing ball handlers.   But he also committed a foul and allowed a score in the post, as Willis may need to add more strength to be able to handle stronger opponents on the block.  In general, Derek Willis had a solid game, as he showed off a versatile set of skills, and he consistently made plays for his team despite the West’s eventual loss in this game.  With his skill set, Willis could end up being an effective role player in the association.

Georgia’s senior point guard, J.J. Frazier quietly had a strong game in a win for the East.  He did not make spectacular plays, but he played very efficiently, and he also performed quite well down the stretch to lead his team to a blowout win over the West.  Frazier showed a good ability to shoot the basketball.  He managed to knock down a couple of threes off the catch, and he has very good range on his shot.  He also managed to draw three free throws on a three-point shot he took another time.  Plus, he also managed to knock down a pull-up, mid-range jumper off the dribble.

Also, he showed a decent ability to get scores off the dribble.   Frazier also has a very good motor, as that helped enable him to get a put back score off of a quick offensive board.  Plus, he showed off solid playmaking and rebounding skills.  Frazier is an unselfish playmaker that can take care of the basketball, and he will make the extra pass to keep the ball moving.  Also, he did a great job of crashing the glass, as he hauled in numerous boards on both ends of the court.  He also defended well, as he would rip balls away from his opponents to get steals for his team.

In general, J.J. Frazier played very well in a win for his team, as he consistently made solid plays throughout the contest to help his ball club.  He did not appear to stand out that much visually, but he helped out in all areas of the game, as he was a fill in the blanks type of player.  With his skill set, he would be a very good addition to an NBA team’s summer league roster this year.

Middle Tennessee’s senior forward, Reggie Upshaw played fairly well, especially early on, as his team claimed a 31-point victory over the West.  He shot the ball well, and showed off some defensive skills to help get the East the win.  Upshaw did a good job of knocking down jumpers to space the floor for his team.  He excelled at making spot up threes off the catch, and he was able to knock down one in the corner.  He missed a mid-range shot, but generally Upshaw showed a solid ability to knock down three-point shots from beyond the arc.

Also, he showed a decent ability to score on hustle plays, as Upshaw was able to score on a tip in.  He did miss once on a high post drive though, and he did not look to create his own shot much in this game.  He also showed off adequate defensive skills.  Upshaw managed to deflect a pass out of bounds early in the game.  But later, he ended up allowing a score in the post off of a put back another time.  In general, Reggie Upshaw showed an adequate ability to shoot and defend when he was on the floor.  He had his moments at times, and he could end up being a 3 and D type of role player in the NBA.

SMU’s 6-6 senior guard, Sterling Brown put forth a decent showing in a loss for his team.  He showed off a good ability to score off the dribble as well as in transition, as well as displaying solid playmaking and defensive skills when he was on the court.  Brown excelled at attacking the basket to garner scores.  He possesses very good acceleration and leaping skills when he gets to the hoop, as he can get numerous scores and free throws off the dribble.  However, he struggled with his jump shot in this game, as he had trouble knocking threes consistently from beyond the arc.

He also displayed solid playmaking skills.  Brown is a good ball handler that ees the floor well, and his court vision allowed him to get a couple of assists.  He would make quick passes to find the open man, and he would also drive in and find big men underneath the hoop to set up scores for his team.  But he did get tied up on one drive that led him to commit a turnover.

Also, Brown also showed off good defensive skills.  He is active and alert defender that can apply considerable ball pressure to opposing ball handlers, and he would jump passes to get numerous steals for his team.  In general, Brown had a fairly solid game, even though he did not shoot the basketball well from the field.  But he did show off a solid set of other skills when he was on the court, and he could end up being a very good addition to an NBA team’s summer league roster.

Grand Canyon’s senior point guard, DeWayne Russell had his moments at times, even though his team ended up losing in a lopsided affair in the Reese’s College All-Star game.  He showed off a solid ability to score off the dribble, as well as good playmaking skills and solid athleticism, but he struggled to make jumpers consistently or rebound the basketball.

Russell showed a very good ability to get scores off the dribble.  He was able to get a quick score off of a baseline drive, and he drew an extra free throw on that play.  Plus, he also managed to score on a floater.  Russell also was able to draw free throws on a pull-up mid-range jumper when he was on the floor.  However, he struggled with his outside shot.  Russell had trouble knocking down threes from beyond the arc, but he was able to make a quick three once in this game.

He did show good playmaking skills.  Russell is a very good passer and ball handler, and he can make an assortment of passes to set up plenty of scores for his teammates.  He also possesses solid court vision, as he showed the ability to make nifty no look passes on the break to his teammates.  Russell also showed decent defensive skills.  He would pressure opposing ball handlers, as he generally showed active feet, and he would play passing lanes to make things tough for his opponents on offense.

In summary, Russell showed off a good ability to score off the dribble and pass the basketball.  But he struggled with his jump shot, particularly from beyond the arc.  He is a skilled playmaker that showed the ability to get any shot he wants.  His three-point shooting woes in this game were troubling, but Russell seems to be skilled enough to land on an NBA team’s summer league roster this year.

Other Notes:

SMU’s senior big man, Ben Moore showed a very good ability to score on hustle plays, as he is a very good athlete that would score on thunderous dunks around the hoop.  Plus, he also passed the ball very well on offense. In general, Moore may be an undersized power forward, but his solid athleticism and ability to score on hustle plays will likely help him land an NBA team’s summer league roster this year.

Illinois State’s senior point guard, Paris Lee struggled a bit at first, but he eventually got into a rhythm as the game wore on.  He showed a good ability to make spot-up threes from beyond the arc, and he is a good playmaker that will find the open man and take care of the basketball.  He struggled on defense though, as he committed a foul on the break that led to his team allowing a score and an additional free throw to the opposition.

Virginia’s senior point guard, London Perrantes did a very good job of passing and handling the ball, and he generally made smart plays when he was in the game.  One notably good play was when he threw a lob pass off of a drive to set up a score for his teammate on the break.  He also showed an adequate ability to make threes and score off the dribble, even though he didn’t look to shoot often.

Belmont’s senior combination forward, Evan Bradds showed a very good ability to finish plays around the basket, as he threw down a dunk, scored on a floater off the dribble, and also scored on a put back.   He is a mobile player that has a solid shooting touch when he looks to score around the basket.

He also played good defense, as he managed to jump a pass to get a steal.  Plus, he passed the ball well, as he picked up two assists in this game.  In summary, Paris Lee, London Perrantes, and Evan Bradds played fairly well, even if they seemed to fade into the background at times, and they could end up on NBA teams’ summer league rosters this year or sometime down the road.

Overall, this was a very fun game to watch.  The 2017 Reese’s College All-Star Game was played at a frenetic pace, and the East dominated from the get go.  While Tyler Cavanaugh was named the MVP for the East squad, I personally felt that Jack Gibbs had the best showing among all of the players that participated in this game.  Still, there were many strong performances from various players on both squads, and this game should likely help them get more notice from NBA teams as a result.