Observations from the First Five Games of the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine

June 13th, 2021

By Alan Lu

There were five games on Day 2 of the Tampa Bay Pro Combine that were played on June 4th, 2021 (it could also be considered Day 1, if you exclude the meet and greet day that had the three-point contest and slam dunk contest). Here are my thoughts on how they went:

Former Texas Tech forward, Joel Ntambwe played very well in the very first game of the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine.
(Photo:
John E. Moore III/Getty Images, via KKAM)

The First Game from the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine (Team 4 vs. Team 2)

Today, I decided to watch the first game that was played on Day 2 of the Tampa Bay Pro Combine.  Team 4 played against Team 2 in the morning, and Team 4 was able to get a sizable victory over them.  In my opinion, the top performers of this match appeared to be Joel Ntambwe, Micah Potter, and Mitch Ballock.  Here are my thoughts on how they fared in this game.

Team 4’s Joel Ntambwe played very well to help lead his team to a win over Team 2.  He had a strong all-around game, and he excelled at making plays on both ends of the floor. Ntambwe showed a solid ability to score in one-on-one situations.  He showed that he can score on strong, left-handed drives to the post as well as in the post.  He also showed a penchant for scoring on strong drives in transition, and he also threw down a thunderous dunk on the break midway through this match.  He also can absorb the contact to draw fouls to often get to the free throw line.  On the downside, he would sometimes take rushed, off-balanced shots, which would lead to some misses.

He also showed an adequate ability to knock down threes in this game.  Ntambwe ran off the ball to make a corner three.  He also pulled up to make another three while drawing contact on that play.  On the downside, he was also a bit streaky with his outside shot in this game. He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills in this game.  Ntambwe can throw long passes to find teammates on the move.  He was able to find a cutter to notch an assist, and he also did a fairly good job of getting the ball to his teammates on the break.  On the downside, he dropped a pass on a backdoor cut that led to a turnover.  He also was called for traveling on another drive to the hoop once.

Also, Ntambwe was able to haul in his fair share of defensive boards when he was on the floor.  He also played good defense.  Ntambwe would block shots to help his team protect the paint.  He also would poke balls away and jump on loose balls to help his team get steals. Overall, Joel Ntambwe is a strong, athletic forward that excelled as a scorer and defender in this game.  He played very well in this game, and he could project to be a 3 and D type of role in the NBA.

Team 2’s Micah Potter had a strong showing in his team’s loss to Team 4.  He shot the ball very well in this game, and he also provided very good shot blocking skills to help his team on the defensive end. Potter did a very good job of shooting and scoring the basketball.  He excelled at scoring on spot-up threes off the catch, and he also showed a knack for scoring off of pick and pop plays.  He also showed a solid ability to score in the post.  Potter showed deft footwork and shooting touch to score on one-legged, fadeaway jumpers as well as on a jump hook.  He also drew free throws on an aggressive drive, and he also ran in to score on a tip slam off of an offensive rebound.  Sometimes, he would miss shots in traffic, but he was able to really hit his stride in the second half of this game.

He also was a bit turnover prone in this game.  For the positives, Potter set an on-ball screen to help his teammate get an open jump shot.  He also brought the ball up off of a steal to help showcase his ball-handling skills.  On the other hand, he dropped a high pass out of bounds.  When handling the ball, he had it poked away that led to another turnover.

Also, Potter was able to grab some rebounds for his team, and he did a good job of grabbing offensive boards when he was on the court.  He also played good defense in this game.  Potter was able to swat away a corner three, as well as a put back to show off his shot-blocking prowess.  He also would rotate to contest shots in the paint to force misses.  Plus, he also would get his hands on passes to help his team get steals and deflections.  On the downside, sometimes he would struggle to defend in the post, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores. Overall, Micah Potter is a mobile, skilled big man that excelled as a shooter, scorer, and interior defender in this game.  He played very well for his team in this match, and he could project to be a rotational big man as a skilled, stretch big in the NBA.

Team 4’s Mitch Ballock also quietly had a solid showing in his team’s win over Team 2.  He is a skilled sharpshooter that shot the ball very well, and he also played solid defense in this game. Ballock showed a penchant for making quick, corner threes off the catch to showcase his solid shooting skills.  He also ran the floor to score in transition.  He also can make drive and kick passes to find open teammates on the floor.  On the downside, he had a ball poked away when handling it to commit a turnover.  He also threw an errant pass that got intercepted another time.

Also, he was able to leap up to get his fair share of defensive rebounds, and he was able to quickly push the ball up the floor after getting a defensive rebound once.  Ballock also would intercept passes that were thrown right to him to get steals. Overall, Mitch Ballock excelled as a shooter and defender in this game.  Though he only possesses average athletic gifts, his strong ability to knock down jump shots could serve him well at higher levels.  If things break his way, he could project into a shooting specialist role in the NBA.

Mississippi State’s 6-6 forward, Jalen Johnson (not to be confused with the former Duke player) excelled as a shooter and rebounder for Team 2 in their loss to Team 4.   Johnson showed a knack for making quick, spot-up threes off the catch.  He also excelled at scoring on hustle plays, as he managed to score on a backdoor cut as well as on a put back.

He also displayed adequate playmaking skills, as he was able to drive and dish it out to a teammate to set up a score for him on the break.  He also rebounded the ball well, as he was able to get boards on both ends of the floor.  Sometimes though, he would be too aggressive in pursuit of boards, which would lead him to commit fouls. He struggled defensively, though.  He had trouble defending in one-on-one situations.  He had trouble defending stronger players in the post, and he also struggled to defend quicker players out on the perimeter, as this would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores. Overall, Jalen Johnson shot the ball well, and he also was active at crashing the glass to grab rebounds in this game.  He will need to improve his shot creation ability and defense, but his jump shot could enable him to compete for a roster spot in the NBA next season.

Team 2’s Brandon Williams had a decent showing in his team’s loss to Team 4.  He excelled as a shooter and scorer in this game, and he was active at making plays on both ends of the floor. Williams did a good job of scoring on outside shots.  He showed that he can make pull-up jumpers, and he also made a quick three another time.  He is a savvy scorer that did a very good job of drawing fouls on pull-up jumpers to often get to the foul line.  He also drove in to score on a high-flying two-handed dunk in transition.  He did sometimes miss on contested, rushed shots around the basket, but he generally shot the ball well on offense.

He displayed average at best playmaking skills.  Williams can throw accurate passes off the dribble, and he also can throw long passes to find teammates on the move.  On the downside, he struggled to handle the ball when heavily pressured.  He also threw a bad bounce pass that got intercepted, and he also dropped a pass that led to another turnover. Williams was able to leap up to get a pair of defensive rebounds.  He also would get his hands on passes and poke balls away to get steals and deflections.  On the downside, he would sometimes commit touch fouls due to over-aggressiveness. Overall, Brandon Williams is an athletic, skilled playmaker that can shoot and score the basketball, but he will need to take better care of the basketball and improve his on-ball defense.  Still, his ability to knock down jump shots could enable him to compete for a roster spot in the NBA either next season or sometime down the road.

Team 4’s Richard Washington had his ups and downs in this game, but he played very well in the first half.  He was able to make a couple of quick, spot-up threes, and he also drew three free throws on a spot-up three to show his shooting skills.  On the downside, he tended to miss too often when hoisting up long-range jumpers in the second half of this match.

He also excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  Washington did a good job of scoring off of backdoor cuts, and he even threw down an emphatic dunk off of a backdoor cut.  However, he struggled to score off the dribble, as he would tend to miss on those possessions.  He also generally passed the ball well, and he excelled at throwing interior passes and finding open teammates on the break to set up scoring chances for his team.  On the downside, he threw a bad pass once that ended up getting intercepted.

He also was active at crashing the boards to help his team get rebounds on both ends of the floor.   Washington also played satisfactory defense.  He would poke balls away to get steals.  He also jumped on a loose ball and intercepted a pass to get additional steals.  On the downside, he would sometimes commit touch fouls due to over-aggressiveness, and he committed a bad foul on a three-point shooter, though the referee gave the opponent only two free throws instead of three on that play.

Overall, Richard Washington had a good first half, but he was too streaky with his jump shot, and he also committed some bad fouls in this game.  He is an athletic swingman that can put up points in bunches, but he will need to be more consistent in games.  He may need to spend some time to hone his game, but if he works hard, over time, he could end up being a 3 and D type of role player in the NBA.

Team 2’s Jimma Gatwech didn’t shoot the ball well, as he struggled to score off the dribble or on mid-range jump shots.  He didn’t take many threes, but he was able to make a quick, open spot-up three off the catch once.  Gatwech’s best score of the game was when he ran the floor and scored on an acrobatic, windmill dunk on the break. He also showed that he can make drive and kick passes to get the ball to open shooters.  Gatwech also would haul in defensive rebounds and quickly push the ball up the floor.  He also managed to jump a pass to get a steal, and he also altered a three-point shot to force a miss another time.

Overall, Jimma Gatwech had his ups and downs, as he would tend to take contested, rushed shots that would lead to misses, but he did show some promise to excel on both ends of the floor.  He may still be far away from playing in the NBA right now, but he is a very athletic combo guard that may have considerable potential, and if he works hard to improve his game, he could end up making it to the NBA someday.

Other Notes:

In the first quarter, there were several players on both teams whose jersey numbers were different from their listed numbers in the program, and it clearly seemed to affect their performances early on.  It caused some confusion, and there were times where the announcers were unable to identify a certain player as a result, or misidentified a player because they were wearing a different jersey number than expected.

In the second quarter, most of the players were wearing the expected jersey numbers that were listed in the program, and the players’ performances seemed to pick up from there.

Austin Peay’s 6-5 senior forward, Terry Taylor played very well to help Team 1 get the win over Team 5 in this game.
(Photo:
APSU Athletics/Clarksville Now)

The Second Game from the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine (Team 1 vs. Team 5)

The second game of the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine was between Team 1 and Team 5 on June 4th, as I was able to see this with thanks to SUVtv.  Team 1 was able to hold off Team 5 to get the win in this match.  In my opinion, the top performers looked to be Terry Taylor, D’Mitrik Trice, Justin Gorham, and Clay Mounce.  Here are my thoughts on how they fared in this game.

Team 1’s Terry Taylor played very well to help lead his team to a win over Team 5.  He especially dominated in the third quarter, as he poured on points at will in that time frame, and he showed off a solid jump shot as well as being able to take it to the rim to score relentlessly in the second half. Taylor excelled at finishing plays in the paint to score the basketball.  He was able to score on a contorted, left-handed jump hook in the post while absorbing the contact that time.  He also would score off of put backs, and he also scored on a tip-in after grabbing an offensive rebound.  He also tended to favor going to his left to score on strong drives to the hoop.  Sometimes though, he would miss on rushed shots when driving it to the basket. 

Also, Taylor shot the ball fairly well.  He was able to make a couple of threes from beyond the arc, and Taylor even used a crossover move and pulled up to make a three-pointer from long distance.  He also used a pump fake and drove the baseline to score on a mid-range floater.  He didn’t seem to make noteworthy passes, but he did step out of bounds once when he was handling the ball in the corner that led to a team turnover. He also rebounded the ball well in this game.  Taylor was able to leap up to haul in multiple boards on both ends of the floor.  Defensively though, there was one play where he was caught ball watching, and he over-helped and left his man open, as he lost track of his man on a cut to allow his man to score on a dunk once.

In general, Terry Taylor had a strong showing to help lead his team to a win in this game.  He showed off versatile scoring skills, and he excelled as a shooter, scorer, and rebounder in this game.  He played very well in this match.  Taylor will still need to improve his outside shot, but he has been one of the better players in this tournament, and he is a borderline second round candidate that could project into a defensive specialist role in the NBA.

Team 5’s D’Mitrik Trice is a skilled, sharpshooting point guard that shot the ball very well in his team’s loss to Team 1.  He especially excelled as a three-point shooter, as he was able to make them off the catch, dribble, and he also ran off of a screen to knock one down.  Trice made threes with ease, and he did a very good job of making long range jumpers in this game. He struggled a little more to score inside the arc.  On one good play, Trice dribbled right off of a screen and then pulled up to score on a mid-range jumper.  However, he struggled to score consistently on pull-up, mid-range jumpers, and he also missed on a floater another time.

He also displayed decent playmaking skills.  Trice is an unselfish player that will look to find the open man, and he can throw solid passes off the dribble.  He was able to notch an assist by throwing an accurate entry pass, as well as by making a swift, drive and kick pass another time.  On the downside, sometimes he would throw lazy passes that would get intercepted.  He also mishandled a ball, as a defender was then able to steal it away from him.

Trice was able to grab a defensive rebound in this game.  He also pounced upon a loose ball to help his team get a steal.  However, his lack of size would make it difficult to guard taller players, as he struggled to defend out on the perimeter as well as in the paint, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores. In summary, D’Mitrik Trice is an agile, skilled playmaker that can shoot and score the basketball.  He played very well in this match, and his ability to knock down jump shots could allow him to project into a shooting specialist role in the NBA.

Team 5’s Justin Gorham also had a solid showing in his team’s loss to Team 1 in this game.  He did a good job of shooting and passing the basketball, and he also grabbed plenty of rebounds in this game. Gorham excelled at making quick, spot-up threes off the catch.  He was able to make a couple of deep threes from way out.  He also was able to drive the baseline to score on a floater. Gorham also used a drop step to draw free throws on a fadeaway jumper, but sometimes he would take tough shots off the dribble that would lead to misses. He also displayed solid playmaking skills.  Gorham showed the knack for finding cutters to set up scoring chances for them.  He also was able to make a drive and kick pass, and he also threw accurate long passes to get his teammates the basketball.  

Also, he did a good job of rebounding the basketball, and he was able to haul in multiple boards on both ends of the floor.  Defensively, he looked to be fairly average in this game.  Gorham was able to poke a ball away to get a steal.  He also dove for a ball on the ground to try to get a loose ball another time.  On the downside, he struggled to defend in the post, as he would tend to commit reach-in fouls. Overall, Gorham played well, as he did a good job of consistently making plays to help his team in this game.  He had a solid collegiate career, and he was one of the better players in this match.  If thing pan out for him, he could project well into a 3 and D role in the NBA.

Team 1’s Clay Mounce played well in his team’s win in this game.  He excelled as a spot-up shooter from beyond the arc, and he was able to run off of a ball screen to make a quick, corner three off of an inbounds play. He also excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  He was able to run in to score on a tip-in off of an offensive rebound.  He also ran the floor to score in transition while getting an extra free throw.  Plus, he also managed to score on a quick drive to the basket another time.

Plus, he also rebounded the ball well, and Mounce was able to get boards on both ends of the floor.  He also contested a fadeaway jumper in the post to force a miss another time.  Overall, Clay Mounce had a solid showing to help lead his team to a victory, and he is an agile, skilled swingman that could project to be a shooting specialist in the NBA.

Team 1’s Jahvon Blair also played fairly well in his team’s win over Team 5 in this game.  He excelled as a shooter and scorer in this game.  He can knock down pull-up threes effortlessly, and he also can use either hand to score on quick drives to the basket.  He also showed a knack for getting fouled on pull-up jumpers to get to the free throw line often.  On the downside, he can be streaky with his jump shot, as he missed on his fair share of mid-range jump shots.

He also displayed decent playmaking skills in this game.  Blair would throw crisp, long passes to set up scores for his teammates on the move, and he also can make drive and kick passes.  On the downside, he can throw inaccurate, up for grabs passes that can lead to turnovers.  He also was doubled and blitzed when handling the ball, as he ended up dribbling the ball out of bounds. Defensively, he looked to be about average at best.  Blair was able to jump on a loose ball to help his team get a steal.  On the downside, he had trouble fighting through screens, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores.

Overall, Jahvon Blair is an agile, scoring point guard that can shoot and score the basketball.  He will need to be a more consistent shooter in games, but his ability to shoot and score in bunches could allow him to compete for a roster spot in the NBA next season.  If things pan out for him, he could project to be a microwave type of scorer or into a shooting specialist role in the association.

Team 5’s D.J. Funderburk is an athletic big man that did a good job of scoring the basketball in his team’s loss to Team 1.  He excelled at scoring off the dribble as well as in the post.  Funderburk used a crossover to score on a powerful dunk off of a right-handed drive.   He also would throw down powerful dunks in the post.  Plus, he also made an open, spot-up three to show off his shooting skills, but he also would sometimes miss shots or make mistakes at times due to rushing.  Overall, Funderburke excelled as a shooter and scorer on offense, and he could end up being a rotational big man in the NBA.

Team 1’s Sterling Manley played fairly well, as he especially excelled in the second quarter of this game.  He showed a decent ability to score in the post, as he would score on quick, turnaround jumpers.  He also managed to score on a tip-in after grabbing an offensive rebound.  Manley also scored on a powerful dunk off of a roll to the rim. He displayed fairly average playmaking skills.  Manley was able to pass the ball to a cutter to notch an assist.  He also set an on-ball screen to help his teammate get an open driving lane to score on a pull-up, mid-range jumper.  On the downside, he had some trouble protecting the basketball, as he ended up committing a couple of turnovers in the post. He also did a good job of rebounding the basketball, and he was able to leap up to haul in multiple boards on both ends of the floor.  Also, Manley played solid defense in this game.  He was able to poke a ball away to a teammate in the post to help his team get a steal.  He also would hold his ground and contest shots in the post to force misses.

Overall, Sterling Manley excelled as an interior player in this game.  He didn’t seem to play as much in the second half, but his strong play in the second quarter helped establish the tone for his team in that time frame.  He played fairly well in this match, and he is an athletic, energetic center that could project to be a rotational big man at the NBA level.

Team 5’s Marcus Burk had a decent showing in his team’s loss to Team 1.  He especially played well in the second quarter, and he showed off good athletic gifts as well as some scoring skills in this game. Burk excelled at attacking the basket to score for his team.  He managed to throw down a roaring, thunderous dunk off of a backdoor cut.  He also drove in to score on a sweeping layup.  Plus, he also showed a knack for scoring on pull-up jumpers from the mid-range.  On the downside, he really struggled to make threes from beyond the arc in this game.

He also passed the ball well, and he would look to find the open man to set up scores for his teammates.  Burk also would play passing lanes to get steals and deflections for his team.  Overall, Burk is an athletic combo guard that excelled as a scorer, facilitator, and defender.  He will need to improve his jump shot, but he seemed to play well enough to warrant a roster spot on an NBA summer league team this year.

Other Notes:

This video did not show most of the first quarter of this game, so this write-up was only based on what I saw from the latter three quarters that were played in this contest between Team 1 and Team 5.

Morgan State’s 6-9 senior forward, Troy Baxter had a tremendous showing for Team 3 in the third game of the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine.
(Photo:
Tony Quinn/ISI Photos/Getty Images, via Bleacher Report)

The Third Game from the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine (Team 3 vs. Team 2)

I managed to watch the third game of the Tampa Bay Pro Combine that took place between Team 3 and Team 2 on June 4th, as I was able to see this with thanks to SUVtv.  In this game, Team 3 ended up blowing out Team 2 to run away with a double-digit victory.  In my opinion, the top performers of this match were Troy Baxter, Jordan Goodwin, and Chandler Vaudrin.  Here are my thoughts on how they fared in this game.

Team 3’s Troy Baxter had a tremendous showing in his team’s win over Team 2. Baxter had a strong all-around game, as he excelled as a shooter, scorer, and defender to help Team 3 get the victory. Baxter showed a solid ability to score in one-on-one situations.  He managed to score on a quick, turnaround fadeaway jumper in the post.  He also was able to score on an aggressive, left-handed drive to the hoop.  Plus, he also would score on speedy drives on the break, and he also ran the floor to score on an acrobatic layup.

He also showed off adequate shooting skills in this game.  Baxter was able to make a couple of spot-up threes, and he also ran off the ball to make a quick, spot-up three once.  He also made an open mid-range jumper from the baseline.  On the downside, he also missed his fair share of three-pointers, as he was a bit streaky with his jump shot at times.

He also was a bit turnover prone on offense.  For the positives, Baxter was able to throw a long outlet pass to set up a scoring chance for a teammate on the break.  He also handles the ball well.  On the downside, he would sometimes throw inaccurate passes that would go astray.  He also was called for stepping out of bounds another time. He also was active at crashing the glass, and Baxter was able to haul in plenty of defensive rebounds to help his team.  He also would tend to push the ball up the floor after getting defensive boards in this contest.

Also, Baxter played very good defense in this game.  He did a great job of blocking shots off of drives, and he even made a nice chase down block due to possessing good length, athleticism, and timing.  He was a shot-blocking machine, and he would make it very difficult for his opponents to get their shots off.  He also was able to deflect a pass and poke a ball away to nearly get steals other times.

Overall, Troy Baxter is a very athletic combo forward that can shoot, score, and defend when he is on the floor.  He turned in a terrific game to help his team get a double-digit victory.  He looks to be a very underrated prospect for the 2021 draft, and he could end up being a solid role player in the NBA.

Team 3’s Jordan Goodwin had a solid showing to help lead his team to a win over Team 2.  He showed off versatile scoring skills, and he generally had a solid all-around game on this day. Goodwin excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  He scored on a powerful dunk off of a quick, backdoor cut.  He also scored on a high-flying dunk off of a drive in transition.  Plus, he also dribbled in to score on a put back after leaping up to grab an offensive rebound.

He also showed an adequate ability to score off the dribble.  Goodwin was able to score using either hand.  He managed to score on a powerful dunk off the dribble, and he also can score on crafty layups around the basket.  Sometimes though, he would try to force the issue too much, which would lead him to miss tough shots in traffic.  He also tried to score when posting up, but he ended up missing on a couple of turnaround jumpers. He also did an adequate job of knocking jumpers to provide floor spacing for his team on offense.  Goodwin was able to pull up to knock down a three from beyond the arc.  He also pulled up to score on a long two-pointer in transition.  On the downside, he struggled to make pull-up, mid-range shots consistently in this match.

Also, Goodwin displayed good playmaking skills in this game.  He excelled at throwing interior passes to set up scores for his teammates in transition.  He showed that he can throw accurate lobs and find cutters on the move, and he also would quickly make drop-off passes off the dribble to consistently find the open man.  Goodwin passed and handled the ball well, and he showed off solid court vision and passing skills that enabled him to rack up assists.

Plus, he also rebounded the ball well.  He was able to haul in boards on both ends of the floor, and he was quite active at helping his team get defensive rebounds.  Also, Goodwin played good defense.  He was able to block a shot off of a put back.  He also would get his hands on passes, poke balls away, and jump on loose balls to help his team get a plethora of steals and deflections.  

Overall, Jordan Goodwin played well, as he showed off a solid all-around game to help Team 3 get the win over Team 2 in this game.  He is a very athletic playmaker that has shown an improved jump shot to complement his playmaking, rebounding, and defensive skills in this tournament.  He will still need to be a more consistent shooter in games, but he may be an underrated prospect that could end up being an effective role player in the NBA.

Team 3’s Chandler Vaudrin also played well in this game.  He had a solid all-around showing, as he was able to make solid plays on both ends of the floor, and he played very well in the second half.  Vaudrin excelled at scoring on strong, right-handed drives to the hoop, and he also was able to score on a couple of acrobatic shots.  He also was able to draw free throws on a drop step in the post.  On the downside, he didn’t look to take jumpers from outside of the paint, and he would sometimes miss on rushed, contested shots.

Vaudrin also displayed adequate playmaking skills in this game.  He would throw timely passes to get the ball to open shooters to set up scores for them.  He also was able to throw an accurate bounce pass to find a cutter to notch an assist.  Vaudrin also can push the ball and lead the break to get the ball to his teammates in transition, and he also can make quick drive and kick passes.  Sometimes though, he can be turnover prone on offense.  He would throw hasty passes that would get intercepted, and he also threw a pass that slipped out of his hands another time.  On one play, he ended up losing the ball when handling the basketball under heavy pressure to commit a turnover.

Also, Vaudrin did a very good job of rebounding the basketball.  He hauled in many defensive rebounds in this game.  Sometimes he would push the ball quickly up the court afterwards.  He also played adequate defense.  He would poke balls away to help his team get steals and deflections.  However, he would also struggle to defend opponents off the dribble or on screens, which would lead him prone to committing fouls as a result. Overall, Chandler Vaudrin had a solid showing, as he excelled at attacking the hoop to get points, assists, and rebounds in this game.  He will still need to improve his outside shot and his on-ball defense, but he is a smart, skilled point forward that in a favorable scenario could end up being an effective role player in the NBA.

Team 3’s Keith Williams also played fairly well in this game, and he especially was effective for his team in the first half. Williams excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  He did a good job of scoring off of put backs and backdoor cuts, and he also ran in to score on a tip slam.  He also ran the floor to score on an emphatic dunk, and he also would draw fouls on aggressive drives in transition.  Another time though when he got the ball in transition, he ended up getting his shot blocked.

He also showed a knack for scoring on pull-up, mid-range jumpers.  However, he was unable to score on turnaround jumpers in the post, and he also really struggled to knock down threes that he hoisted up from beyond the arc. He also showcased adequate playmaking skills.  Williams would throw solid interior passes to set up scores for his teammates, and he can throw timely passes to get them the basketball.  He also did a good job of throwing interior passes to roll men on the move.  On the downside, he threw an inaccurate pass that sailed out of bounds once.  He also dropped a lob pass on an alley-oop dunk attempt that led to another turnover. Plus, he also rebounded the ball well in this game.  Williams was very active at crashing the glass to get rebounds, and he was able to get multiple boards on both ends of the floor.  On defense, sometimes he would be too aggressive when contesting jump shots, as he ended up fouling opponents on a couple of mid-range shots.

Overall, Keith Williams is an athletic swingman that had a decent showing to help lead Team 3 to a win in this game, and he especially excelled as a scorer in the second quarter.  He will still need to improve his three-point shooting and also look to be a more disciplined defender in games.  He may need to spend some time to hone his game, but he could end up competing for a roster spot in the NBA sometime in the future.

Team 3’s Manny Camper also played well in his team’s win over Team 2.  He was able to make a couple of very athletic plays to help put up points for his team on offense. Camper excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  He ran the floor and caught a lob pass to score on a high-flying, alley-oop dunk.  He also managed to score on a backdoor cut while getting an extra free throw afterwards.  He also showed a decent ability to score off the dribble.  Camper managed to score on a strong, right-handed drive to the hoop.  He also showed a penchant for scoring on pull-up, mid-range jumpers.  He didn’t take threes very often, but he missed on a corner three from beyond the arc.

He also displayed solid playmaking skills in this game.  Camper threw an accurate lob pass to set up a score for a teammate on the break.  He also was able to consistently make drive and kick passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates.  He also was able to get a defensive rebound.  Plus, he played satisfactory defense.  On one play, he helped double and blitz an opposing ball handler to help force a ball-handling turnover.

Overall, Manny Camper played well to help his team get a double-digit victory over Team 2.  He is a very athletic, energetic swingman that excelled at making hustle plays on both ends of the floor.  He will still need to improve his three-point shot, but his athleticism, motor, and ability to make plays could enable him to compete for a roster spot in the NBA next season.

Team 2’s Brandon Williams had a fairly solid showing for his team in their loss to Team 3.  He looked to be his team’s best player in the first half, but he ended up getting hurt early in the third quarter after scoring on an acrobatic drive to his right. Williams did a very good job of scoring on quick drives to the hoop.  He showed a penchant for scoring on acrobatic layups, and he showed good speed, body control, and finishing ability to do so.  He also would absorb the contact to draw numerous fouls upon his defenders.  Plus, he also showed an adequate ability to knock down jumpers.  Williams was able to make a quick, spot-up three from way out.  He also dribbled off of a screen, and managed to get fouled on a mid-range shot to get to the free throw line.  He was a bit streaky with his three-point shot, but he was very effective at shooting and scoring the basketball when he would hoist up shots on offense. Also, he displayed average at best playmaking skills in this game.  Williams was able to make a drive and kick pass to notch an assist.  He also handles the ball well.  On the downside, he would struggle to handle the ball under heavy pressure, as he ended up losing the ball out of bounds on a couple of possessions.

He also was able to get a defensive rebound.  Williams also played satisfactory defense in this game.  He was to get his hands on passes and was able to poke a ball away to get steals and deflections for his team.  Overall, Williams is an agile, skilled combo guard that can knock down shots and defend.  He will need to take better care of the basketball and show that he can consistently knock down outside shots, but his ability to score and make plays on both ends of the floor could enable him to compete for a roster spot in the NBA next season.

Team 2’s Javion Hamlet also played fairly well in his team’s loss to Team 3.  He especially seemed to shine as a shooter and scorer in the second half, and he showed a knack for scoring off the dribble as well as on floaters to help his team score the basketball. Hamlet showed a knack for scoring on pull-up, mid-range jumpers.  He excelled at pulling up to score from that range, and he also showed a penchant for scoring on floaters.  He also was able to make a deep three to showcase his shooting skills.  Plus, he also showed a satisfactory ability to score off the dribble.  Hamlet would tend to favor going to his left to score, and he was able to score on a nice scoop layup once.  Sometimes though, he would rush his shots, which would lead to misses.

He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills.  Hamlet is an unselfish player that will make the extra pass to find the open man.  He also threw a lob pass to set up a score for a roll man.  Sometimes though, he would over-dribble and struggle to handle ball pressure.  He took too long when handling the ball, which led him to commit a shot clock violation, though he would’ve scored on a turnaround layup had he been able to get his shot off.  He also had a ball poked away, and he also dribbled off his foot and lost it to an opponent to commit another turnover.

Overall, Hamlet is an agile, skilled playmaker that can shoot and score the basketball.  He will need to take more threes in games, and he will need to take better care of the ball on offense.  He had a strong NCAA Tournament showing, and he also played fairly well in this specific game in the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine.  Hamlet may need to spend some time to hone his game, but if he can improve upon his weaknesses and make the necessary adjustments to continue to improve as an overall player, he could end up making his way to the NBA sometime down the road.

Team 3’s Loudon Love also played fairly well in his team’s win over Team 2.  He showed a solid ability to score in the post.  He was able to score on a fadeaway, jump hook.  He also used a drop step move to score another time.  He also would run the floor to score on fastbreaks, and he also caught a lob pass to score on an alley-oop dunk. He also managed to score on a quick roll to the rim.  Sometimes though, Love would struggle to score around the basket, as he missed on a roll and on a put back another time.  He also tried to score on a right-handed drive to the hoop, but he ended up missing that time. Also, Love displayed adequate playmaking skills in this game.  He was able to pass the ball to a teammate in transition to notch an assist.  Another time though, he threw a hasty pass that got intercepted.

He also was active at crashing the glass, and Love was able to get boards on both sides of the ball.  He also played decent defense in this game.  Love was able to block shots off of drives.  He also was able to get his hands on a pass to help his team get a steal, and he also pounced upon a loose ball to help his team get another.  He also helped double and blitz an opposing ball handler to force his opponent to commit a ball-handling turnover.  On one play, he rotated on a drive but still got beat off the dribble, which led his teammate to have to rotate to commit a foul instead.

Overall, Loudon Love is a strong, mobile big man that excelled as an inside scorer and defender in this game.  He may be an undersized big man that at best possesses above average athletic gifts, but he has a solid motor, and he was quite effective as an interior player in this match.  He will still need to improve his face-up game and jump shot, and it may be uncertain if he can consistently guard more athletic opponents on a consistent basis, but his ability to make plays in the paint could enable him to carve out a solid playing career in professional basketball.

Team 2’s Ryan Daly had a decent showing in his team’s loss to Team 3.  He excelled at attacking the basket to score and get assists, and he also was active as a rebounder and defender in this game. Daly did a very good job of scoring on quick, drives in transition.  He would get to the rim to score on quick layups, and he also would score on floaters on the break.  He also posted up and dribbled to his right to score on a layup.  He also showed a decent ability to score off the dribble.  Daly managed to score on a turnaround, fadeaway jumper off the dribble.  He also used a spin move to get fouled to get free throws.  On the downside, he can sometimes rush his shots, which can lead to misses.

He also showed off a fairly solid, mid-range shot.  Daly ran off of a ball screen to make a quick, baseline mid-range jumper.  He also pulled up to make a mid-range jumper while getting an extra free throw.  Daly showed a knack for getting fouled on mid-range shots to get free throws.  He did miss sometimes from the mid-range, and he even threw up an air-ball from just inside the arc, but he was fairly effective at scoring on mid-range jumpers, nonetheless.  On the downside, he really struggled to make three-pointers, as he was ineffective at scoring on long-range shots from beyond the arc.

He also displayed decent playmaking skills in this game.  Daly would consistently make drive and kick passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates.  On the downside, he can sometimes struggle to handle the ball when pressured.  He lost the ball when handling it to commit a turnover.  He also threw an interior pass that a teammate dropped another time.

Also, Daly was able to leap up to haul in his fair share of defensive rebounds, and he would tend to push the ball up the court afterwards.  Plus, he also played fairly average defense in this game.  Daly was able to get his hands on passes to get steals and deflections.  However, he also struggled to defend in one-on-one situations.  He would get outmuscled when defending in the post, and he would also get beat off the dribble by quicker players, which would lead him to commit fouls as a result.

Overall, Ryan Daly is an agile, skilled combo guard that can make plays on offense to get points and rebounds for his team.  He will need to be a more consistent shooter and he will need to improve his on-ball defense.  He may need to spend some time to hone his game, but his ability to score and distribute the basketball could enable him to carve out a solid playing career in professional basketball.

Mitch Ballock’s tremendous shooting and scoring display helped Team 4 get a narrow win over Team 5, as he also made the go-ahead three-point basket in this game.
(Photo:
Steven Branscombe/USA Today Sports, via The Athletic)

The Fourth Game from the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine (Team 4 vs. Team 5)

This was the fourth game that was played in the Tampa Bay Pro Combine, and Team 4 was able to edge out Team 5 in a thriller that went all the way down to the wire.  Both teams managed top score over a hundred points each, and Team 4’s Mitch Ballock made a terrific, game-winning three-point shot from way out to get his team the lead and the win in this match.  In my opinion, the top performers looked to be Mitch Ballock, Justin Jaworski, and D’Mitrik Trice.  Here are my thoughts on how they fared in this game.

Team 4’s Mitch Ballock had a tremendous game to help lead his team to a narrow win over Team 5.  He excelled as a sharpshooter, and he was able to show his shooting prowess, as he managed to score the basketball at will, especially down the stretch. Ballock did a fantastic job of knocking down threes to space the floor for his team.  He showed a penchant for making quick, corner threes, and he also would pull up to effortlessly score on three-pointers off the dribble.  He also dribbled off of a screen to knock one down.  Towards the end of the game, Ballock used a pump fake and dribbled to his left, as he used a side step move to make a quick, step-back, fadeaway three from way out to score on the go-ahead basket to give his team the lead for good.

He also displayed a satisfactory ability to score off the dribble.  Ballock is an agile, skilled guard that moves well off the ball, and he also shoots the ball well on the move.  He was able to drive to his right to score in transition.  Another time, he used a crossover to go to his left, but he ended up missing on a contested leaner. Also, Ballock showed satisfactory playmaking skills in this game.  He did a good job of passing the ball in transition.  He was able to make a drop-off pass off the dribble to set up a score for a teammate on the break.  He also showed a knack for throwing outlet passes to get the ball to his teammates in transition.  On one play though, he was able to get the ball on a cut, but he then had a ball poked off of himself to lose it to the opposition.

Plus, he also was able to grab his fair share of defensive rebounds, and sometimes he would push the ball quickly up the floor afterwards.  Ballock also played satisfactory defense in this game.  He was able to jump on a loose ball to help his team get a steal.  He also managed to stay with an opposing ball handler on a drive, as he then contested the shot to force the miss. In general, Mitch Ballock is a skilled sharpshooter that can shoot and score the basketball.  He really excelled at knocking down shots in this game, and he is a very good shooter that could project well into a shooting specialist role in the NBA.

Team 5’s Justin Jaworski also played very well, and he really excelled as a shooter and scorer in his team’s loss to Team 4.  He did a good job of shooting the basketball.  He would tend to make quick, spot-up threes from way out, and he was even better at scoring from inside the arc.  On the downside, he would sometimes be streaky with his three-point shot, as he struggled more to make pull-up threes from beyond the arc. Jaworski did a great job of scoring on quick drives to the basket.  He showed that he can finish plays using either hand to do so.  He also showed a knack for pulling up to score on quick, mid-range jumpers, as well as on backdoor cuts to the basket.

Also, he showed solid playmaking skills in this game.  Jaworski excelled at passing off the dribble, and he would make drive and kick passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates.  He also was able to find a cutter, and he generally made sound passes to help his team on offense.  Plus, Jaworski was able to help get his team a couple of defensive rebounds, and he would then push the ball quickly up the floor afterwards.  

He also played fairly average defense.  Jaworski would poke balls away from his opponents to get steals.  He also managed to get into the feet of an opposing shooter on a corner three to force a miss.  On the downside, he struggled to guard quicker players off the dribble, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores.  Another time, he sagged too far off of a shooter, which led him to allow an opponent to score on a three-point shot.

In summary, Justin Jaworski shot the ball well, and he really excelled at scoring the basketball to help his team in this game.  He put forth his strongest showing yet in this tournament.  He is an agile, skilled combo guard that can knock down shots, and he could project into a microwave type of scorer role in the NBA.

Team 5’s D’Mitrik Trice also had a solid all-around showing in his team’s loss to Team 4.  He consistently played well in this game, and he was able to continually make sound plays on both ends of the floor. Trice shot the ball very well to provide floor spacing for his team on offense.  He showed a knack for scoring on three-pointers, as he was able to do so both off the catch and dribble.  He also excelled at scoring on pull-up jumpers from the mid-range.  He also used a crossover and then drove in to score on a speedy runner off the glass.

He also showcased solid playmaking skills in this game.  Trice is an unselfish player that will look to find the open man, and he also would throw accurate interior passes to set up scores for his teammates.  He also was able to find a cutter to notch an assist.  There was one play though where he handled the ball a bit too long, as his team ended up committing a shot clock violation. Also, Trice did a good job of rebounding the basketball.  He was quite active at crashing the glass to get defensive boards, and he would sometimes push the ball quickly up the floor afterwards.

He also played adequate defense in this game.  Trice was able to get his hands on a pass to nearly force a turnover, but he ended up stepping out of bounds shortly afterwards.  He also defended a taller player in the post, held his ground, and contested the shot to force the miss.  However, he can sometimes have lapses on the defensive end.  On one play, he didn’t pick up a man, and his team allowed an opponent to score on a corner three.  On another, he didn’t fully recover when trying to fight through a screen, and his team ended up allowing an opponent to score on a  drive to the rim that time. Overall, D’Mitrik Trice played well in this game, and he is an agile, skilled playmaker that can shoot and pass the basketball.  He had a solid all-around performance to help his team in this match, and he could project to be a solid, backup point guard in the NBA.

Team 4’s Joel Ntambwe also played well, as he especially excelled as a shooter, scorer, and rebounder to help his team get a narrow victory over Team 5. Ntambwe did a good job of knocking down jumpers to provide floor spacing for his team on offense.  He was able to make several threes, and he showed that he can do so both off the catch and dribble.

He also was able to score on a thunderous dunk off the dribble, while getting an extra free throw for his team.  He also was able to get a couple of scores in transition, and he also scored on a jump hook off of a put back.  Sometimes though, he would miss on uncontrolled tip-in attempts, and he also missed on a turnaround jump hook, as he had more trouble scoring out of the post.

He also displayed adequate playmaking skills.  Ntabmwe showed a knack for setting scoring chances for his teammates on drive and kick plays, and he also handled the ball fairly well.  On the downside, he was called for stepping out of bounds once.  He also was apparently called for a clear out foul on a left-handed drive that led him to commit an offensive foul and a turnover another time.

Also, Ntambwe did a terrific job of rebounding the basketball.  He was very active at collecting boards on both ends of the floor, and he also managed to quickly push the ball up the floor off of a defensive rebound once.  He also looked to be fairly average defensively.  For the positives, he was able to contest several jumpers to force misses.  He also jumped on a loose ball to help his team get a steal.  Sometimes though, he would sag too far off of shooters to allow opponents to score on threes, and there was one play where he didn’t even contest a three-point shot.  He also can be caught ball watching as he can tend to be late on his rotations.  On one play, he committed a foul on a drive to allow a score and an extra free throw.  On another he lost track of a cutter to allow a score to his opponent.

Overall, Joel Ntambwe is a very athletic, combo forward that has shown that he can shoot, score, and rebound the basketball.  He has played well in this tournament, but he will need to be a more focused defender in games.  He may be an underrated prospect, and he could project well into a 3 and D type of role in the NBA.

Team 4’s Quade Green also had a solid showing to help lead his team to a close win over Team 5.  He especially excelled as an offensive player, and he also rebounded the ball very well in this game. Green excelled at scoring on jumpers to space the floor for his team.  He showed a knack for scoring on pull-up jump shots from both the mid-range and from behind the three-point line, and he is a good ball handler that can use dribble moves to get his shots off to score.  He also managed to score on a quick drive to the basket.  Green also showed a penchant for scoring on strong drives in transition.  Sometimes though, he would take tough, contested shots when taking the ball to the rim that would lead him to miss in traffic.

He also displayed good playmaking skills.  He is a good passer both off the dribble and in transition, and he would throw accurate passes to rack up assists.  Green would often find teammates on the move, and he would routinely find cutters and roll men.  He threw accurate lob passes, and he also has solid court vision that would enable him to consistently find the open man.  On the downside, he threw a loopy pass that ended up getting intercepted.  He also dropped a quick pass that led to another team turnover.

Also, Green did a very good job of rebounding the basketball, and he especially was effective at hauling in defensive rebounds in this game.  Defensively though, he struggled.  For the positives, Green was able to rotate to poke a ball away to nearly get a steal.  He also contested a three to force a miss.  However, he struggled to defend out on the perimeter.  He would give up too much space to allow opponents to score on pull-up jumpers, and he would struggle to stay in front of quicker ball-handlers.  Another time, he got caught ball watching as he lost track of his man on a cut, which led his teammate to rotate to commit the foul on that play. Overall, Quade Green played well, as he was able to consistently make plays to help his team get the win in this game.  He will need to improve his defense, but his ability to shoot and pass could enable him to be an effective backup point guard in the NBA someday.

Team 4’s Makuach Maluach is a very athletic forward that played well on both ends of the floor to help his team get a narrow win over Team 5. He excelled at attacking the basket, as he showed a solid ability to score off the dribble as well as on hustle plays.  Maluach was able to finish plays using either hand.  He managed to score on a fallaway layup on a strong drive to the basket.  He also drove in to score on a high-flying, two-handed jam. He also caught a lob pass to score on an alley-oop dunk off of a backdoor cut.  Maluach also would run the floor to score in transition.  Plus, he also was able to make an open, corner three to showcase his outside shooting skills.  He did miss a couple of shots due to rushing, but he did a much better job of making shots from all over the floor.

He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills in this game.  Maluach was able to throw an accurate lob pass to set up a score for a teammate on the break.  However, he also would tend to step out of bounds, which led to a couple of team turnovers.  Also, he was fairly active at crashing the glass, and Maluach was able to get rebounds on both sides of the ball.  He also played satisfactory defense in this game.  Malauch was able to poke a ball away and intercept a pass to help his team get steals.  He also contested a three to force a miss.  On the downside, he would sag too far off of shooters to allow opponents to score on three-point shots, and there was one possession where he didn’t even bother to guard or contest the three-point shot that led a score to the opposition.

Overall, Makuach Maluach had a solid showing in this game, and he is a very athletic swingman that showed off versatile scoring skills, and he also made some solid defensive plays in this match.  He will still need to trust his outside shot more and he will need to be more consistently productive in games.  In a favorable scenario, if things break his way, he could project into a 3 and D type of role in the NBA.

Team 5’s Cameron Krutwig passed the ball very well in his team’s loss to Team 4.  He has struggled to shoot or score in this tournament, but he was very effective as a facilitator to set up scores for his teammates on offense. In this game, Krutwig showed a knack for scoring on mid-range floaters.  He also managed to score on a turnaround, jump hook in the post to showcase his low post scoring skills.  However, he struggled to score on off-ball motion plays on the move, and he also missed on an open three-point shot.  Krutwig was still inconsistent as a scorer and didn’t take nearly enough shots on offense.

Krutwig showed off good playmaking skills in this game.  He showed a knack for throwing crisp, accurate interior passes to notch assists, and he also excelled at finding cutters on the move.  He also passes the ball well out of the post, and he also showed a knack for throwing very long passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates on the break.  On the downside, he threw an inaccurate pass to a cutter that sailed out of bounds once.

He also was fairly active on the glass, and Krutwig was able to get boards on both ends of the floor.  Krutwig also played satisfactory defense in this game.  He showed a knack for getting his hands on passes to get steals.  He also managed to poke a ball away, and he also jumped on a loose ball to help his team get other steals.  He also successfully challenged a shot in the post to force a miss.  On the downside, he struggled more when he would be forced to defend out on the perimeter, and in situations where he didn’t come away with a steal.  He would rotate to guard opposing ball-handlers, but he would still get beat off the dribble to allow scores due to lacking the lateral mobility or foot speed to stay in front of them.  Another time, his teammate ended up getting screened hard by an opponent, but he didn’t rotate to an open three-point shooter, as his team allowed the score to his opponent that time.

Overall, Cameron Krutwig had his ups and downs, but he passed the ball well, and he was able to make some good defensive plays at times to help his team on that side of the ball.  He struggled to make shots in this tournament though, and Krutwig will need to improve his outside shot.  Right now, he may be a long shot to be drafted, but his playmaking skills and basketball IQ could enable him to either compete for a roster spot in the NBA in the near future, or to carve out a solid playing career in professional basketball if he does not end up making the NBA someday.

North Carolina’s 6-11 center, Sterling Manley did a very good job of scoring the basketball, as he especially excelled as a scorer inside the paint to help Team 1 get the win over Team 3.
(Photo:
Gerry Broome/The Associated Press, via ACCSports.com)

The Fifth Game from the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine (Team 1 vs. Team 3)

In the fifth and final game on Day 2 of the Tampa Bay Pro Combine (or Day 1 of the combine basketball games), Team 1 squared off Team 3 in an afternoon game, as I was able to see this with thanks to SUVtv.  It was a high-scoring affair in which Team 1 was able to get the win, and the top performers of the match in my opinion were Sterling Manley, Terry Taylor, and Asbjorn Midtgaard.  Here are my thoughts on how they fared in this contest.

Team 1’s Sterling Manley had a solid showing to help lead his team over Team 3.  He really excelled at scoring in the paint, and he was also active as a rebounder and interior defender for his team. Manley showed a knack for scoring on hustle plays.  He would often score on rolls to the rim, as he would throw down powerful jams, and he also caught a lob pass on the move to score on an alley-oop dunk.  He also would absorb the contact and draw fouls upon his defenders to get free throws.  Plus, he also excelled at running the floor to score in transition and at scoring on strong put backs, and he was able to throw down a couple of dunks off of those plays as well.

He also showed the ability to score off the dribble.  On one play, Manley used a crossover move to score on a tough, reverse layup off of a baseline drive.  He also would score on right-handed, turnaround jump hooks in the post.  However, he would sometimes miss on fadeaway jumpers after getting the ball down low, and he would sometimes take tough, off-balanced shots that would lead to misses.

Also, Manley was able to throw an outlet pass to a teammate to get the ball to him in transition.  He would also frequently set screens and roll off of them to create scoring chances for himself and his team.  On one play though, he had a ball poked away in the post to commit a turnover. In addition, Manley showed a solid ability to rebound the basketball, and he was able to leap up to get multiple boards on both ends of the floor.

Defensively, he looked to be about average at best.  For the positives, Manley did a very good job of blocking shots to help his team protect the paint.  He also managed to deflect a pass to a teammate to help his team get a steal.  He also contested a mid-range jumper to force a miss.  On the other hand, he would tend to sag too far off of his man, which would lead him to allow opponents to score on open three-point shots.  He also tended to bite on pump fakes in the post, which would lead him to commit fouls.  Other times, he would be late on his rotations, which would allow opponents to score on dunks at the rim.

Overall, Sterling Manley excelled as an inside scorer, as he was able to pour on plenty of points at scoring on off-ball motion plays around the basket in this game to help his team get the victory.  He will need to extend his shooting range and work on his outside shot and perimeter skills.  If he makes it to the NBA, he could project to be a defensive specialist at that level.

Team 1’s Terry Taylor had a strong all-around showing to help lead his team to a win over Team 3.  Taylor did a good job of scoring inside the paint.  He showed a knack for scoring on put backs, as he was able to score on a floater, on a put back dunk, as well as on a thunderous tip slam later on.  He also was able to score on a left-handed, turnaround jump hook in the post.  Taylor also ran in to score in transition another time.

Plus, he also used an overhead ball fake to score on a finger roll layup off the dribble.  On the downside, sometimes Taylor would go in too strong and rush his shots, which would lead to some misses.  Also, Taylor was able to use a crossover and a step back move to knock down a three-point shot.  He also managed to use a crossover to draw free throws on a mid-range floater.  On the downside, he struggled to make mid-range shots consistently, as he also threw up a pair of air-balls from that range.

He also displayed adequate playmaking skills.  Taylor can throw accurate passes off the dribble, and he can throw long outlet passes to find open shooters.  He also can find teammates on the move, and he was able to rack up several assists in this game.  On the downside, he struggled to handle the ball under pressure at times, which would lead him to commit ball-handling turnovers.  He also threw an inaccurate interior pass while leading the break, as it ended up sailing out of bounds.

Also, Taylor did a great job of rebounding the basketball.  He would frequently haul in boards on both ends of the floor, and sometimes he would push the ball quickly up the court after getting defensive boards. He also played satisfactory defense in this game.  Taylor was able to intercept a pass and pounce upon a loose ball off of a dropped pass to help his team get steals.  He also would alter shots off of drives to force misses, and he also successfully challenged a three to get another stop for his team.  On one play though, he struggled to get around a screen when defending off the dribble, and he ended up following his opponent to allow a score and an extra free throw that time. Overall, Terry Taylor had a solid, all-around game, and he was able to consistently play well down the stretch.  Right now, he will need to continue to improve his outside shot, but in a favorable scenario, he could end up projecting to be a defensive specialist in the NBA.

Team 3’s Asbjorn Midtgaard played well, as he excelled as a shooter, scorer, and rebounder in his team’s loss to Team 1.   He showed a knack for scoring on hustle plays.  He would often score on rolls, put backs, and in transition.  He caught a lob pass to score on an alley-oop dunk off of a roll to the rim.  He also ran the floor to score on a powerful dunk.

He also shot the ball well, especially from downtown.  Midtgaard was able to make a couple of open, spot-up threes off the catch.  He also showed an adequate ability to score in the post.  He was able to score on a turnaround jump hook, and he also scored on a powerful jam another time.  Sometimes though, he would miss on turnaround jump hooks, but Midtgaard did a good job of making his shots efficiently in this game. Also, Midtgaard tended to make good decisions on offense.  He was able to pass the ball back to a teammate on a dribble handoff to notch an assist.  He also would tend to set on-ball screens to help his teammates get driving lanes to score the basketball.

He also was fairly active at crashing the glass to help his team get rebounds, as he would able to get boards on both sides of the ball.  Defensively though, he struggled.  For the positives, he was able to deflect a pass to a teammate to help his team get a steal.  He also contested a mid-range jump shot to force a miss.  On the downside, he would struggle to defend quicker ball handlers, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores.  He also would be late on his rotations, as his team would allow scores on rolls to the basket. Overall, Asbjorn Midtgaard did a good job of shooting and scoring the basketball in this game.  He will need to improve his mobility and defensive skills, but his jump shot could enable him to carve out a solid playing career in professional basketball.

Team 1’s Clay Mounce also played very well to help lead his team to a victory in this game.  He excelled as a shooter and defender in this match.  Mounce showed a knack for scoring on open, corner threes off the catch.  He also ran off of a ball screen to make a quick, mid-range jumper, and he also would get fouled on dribble jumpers to get free throws.

He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills.  Mounce was able to throw a long outlet pass to a teammate to set up a score in transition.  He also can throw solid interior passes to get his teammates the basketball.  Sometimes though, he can over-dribble, as he ended up losing the ball out of bounds.  Another time, he threw an inaccurate outlet pass that ended up getting intercepted. Also, he was fairly active at grabbing rebounds, and he was able to get boards on both sides of the ball.  Mounce also played good defense in this game.  He would get his hands on passes to get plenty of steals and deflections.  He would stay in front of opposing ball handlers, and he would actively contest jumpers to force misses.

Overall, Mounce is an agile, skilled shooter that moves fairly well off the ball, and he excelled at shooting the basketball, even though he didn’t get nearly as many touches as some of his other teammates in this game.  He also defended well in this match, and in a favorable scenario, he could end up being a 3 and D type of role player in the NBA.

Team 3’s Chandler Vaudrin played fairly well in his team’s loss to Team 1.  He is a very good passer that can comfortably run the point, and he also excelled as a rebounder and defender in this game.  He did struggle to consistently score the  basketball or to make shots efficiently, but he did everything else well. Vaudrin was able to run the floor to score on a two-handed dunk on the break.  He also posted up and used shot fakes to draw free throws.  While he would sometimes score on crafty moves on right-handed drives to the hoop, he would tend to miss on contested, rushed shots in traffic.  He also attempted a three once, but missed from beyond the arc.

He also passed the ball very well.  Vaudrin is a good passer and ball handler that can ably run the point as well as play off the ball.  He can effortlessly make drive and kick passes, and he also can find cutters out of the post.  He also was able to throw a long outlet pass to set up a score for a teammate on the break.  He was able to rack up assists effortlessly, but he was called for committing an offensive foul by clearing out with his arm on a baseline drive to the hoop once.

Also, Vaudrin rebounded the ball well, and he would tend to bring the ball up the floor afterwards.  Plus, he also played solid defense.  He was able to backtap an opposing ball handler on a drive off of a screen to get a steal, and he would jump on loose balls to help his team get other steals.  He also would contest threes to force misses.  In this game, Vaudrin did a good job of poking balls away and he also was active at challenging jumpers.  On the downside, he would sometimes give up too much space to shooters and be late on his rotations, which would lead him to allow opponents to score on jumpers.

Overall, Chandler Vaudrin excelled as a facilitator, rebounder, and defender to help his team in this game.  He will still need to improve his jump shot and he will need to show that he can consistently score and defend at higher levels.  Right now, if things pan out for him, he could project to be a rotational backup wing player as a secondary ball mover or possibly as a backup point guard in the NBA.

Team 3’s Loudon Love was very efficient as a scorer in this game, as he especially was effective as a scorer in the post as well as off of hustle plays.  He showed a knack for scoring on turnaround jump hooks in the post and off the dribble.  He also would throw down powerful dunks, as he did so off of a cut, in transition, and on a put back.  He also drew free throws on a roll to the rim.  Love also attempted an open three, but missed that time from beyond the arc.

He also displayed fairly average playmaking skills. Love showed that he can throw accurate interior passes in this game. He was able to throw an outlet pass to a teammate on the break to notch an assist. He also found a cutter out of the post to help set up a scoring chance another time. However, he would sometimes drop passes on backdoor cuts.

Love also was able to get his fair share of rebounds, as he was able to get multiple boards on both sides of the ball. He also played solid defense. Love would block shots off of drives and poke balls away to get steals. He also would actively contest jump shots to get stops, and he also held his ground when defending in the post to force a miss. On the downside, sometimes he would struggle to guard opponents in the mid-range area, and he would sometimes be late on his rotations, which would lead him to allow scores. Overall, Loudon Love is a strong, skilled big man that can score and defend in the post. He will need to extend his shooting range and show that he can consistently guard opponents out on the perimeter. He may be a long shot to be drafted, but he could end up carving out a solid playing career in professional basketball.

Team 3’s Troy Baxter had a decent showing in this game.  He played very well in the first half, and he was able to throw down numerous highlight reel-worthy dunks in transition.  He struggled with his jump shot and on the defensive end though, and he struggled to make shots consistently in the second half. Baxter really excelled at scoring on hustle plays.  He would tend to throw down thunderous dunks on fast breaks, and he also caught a lob pass to score on a powerful alley-oop dunk off of a backdoor cut. He also showed a knack for scoring on one-legged, fadeaway mid-range jumpers.  Baxter also was able to make an open, spot-up three, but he really struggled to knock down threes from beyond the arc.

He also passed the ball well.  Baxter did a good job of making interior passes, and he was able to find a cutter to help set up a score for a teammate.  He also was able to get his fair share of defensive rebounds in this game.  Defensively though, he struggled in this game.  On one good play, he was able to jump a pass to get a steal.  However, he would tend to take bad gambles, which would lead him to bite on pump fakes and commit touch fouls on the defensive end due to over-aggressiveness.  Another time, he would give up too much space and a bit late to contest shots, which would lead him to allow opponents to score on mid-range jumpers.

Overall, Troy Baxter is a very athletic, combo forward that excelled at making hustle plays, but he didn’t shoot or defend as well as he could have in this game.  Currently, he projects to be a borderline second round candidate.  He will need to improve his jump shot and be a more disciplined defender in games.  If he can improve upon his weaknesses and make these adjustments, he could then end up being a 3 and D type of role player in the NBA.

Team 1’s Nate Reuvers also played fairly well in his team’s win over Team 3.  He did a good job of scoring on put backs, rolls, and in the post, and Reuvers was able to score on an emphatic dunk off of a roll to the rim.  He also managed to get the ball to a corner shooter to notch an assist. Also, Reuvers did a good job of getting offensive rebounds, and he would block shots to his teammates to help his team protect the paint.  He didn’t take many shots, but he was effective as a scorer around the basket, and he excelled as an interior player for his team.  He’ll still need to improve his outside shot and show that he can guard upper-echelon opponents on a consistent basis, but Reuvers is an energetic big man that could compete for a roster spot in the NBA next season.

Team 1’s Jahvon Blair had a decent showing in his team’s win over Team 3.  Though he didn’t shoot nor defend well, Blair excelled as a facilitator and rebounder in this game. He was able to show that he can make threes and mid-range shots both off the catch and dribble, but he tended to miss on too many threes from beyond the arc, and Blair struggled to consistently make pull-up jumpers in this game.  He did show that he can score on floaters, and he also showed that he can go to his left to score on quick drives to the hoop.  On one play though, he got his shot blocked on a drive in transition, as he can sometimes hoist up contested shots that may lead to misses.

Blair also passed and handled the ball very well in this game.  He showed a knack for throwing solid interior passes as well as making solid passes in transition to find teammates on the move to rack up assists.  He also was able to make drive and kick passes, and he would often look to find the open man.  Sometimes though, he would over-dribble, which would lead him to commit turnovers.

Also, he did a very good job of rebounding the basketball.  Blair was also able to jump on a loose ball to help his team get a steal.  However, he generally struggled to defend in one-on-one situations.  He would tend to get beat off the dribble as well as on a cut, which would lead him to commit fouls and allow scores.  He also got outmuscled when defending in the post, which led him to commit a foul and allow a score another time.

Overall, Jahvon Blair struggled to knock down shots, but he also passed the ball very well, and he excelled as a ball mover and rebounder for his team.  He will need to be a more consistent shooter and scorer in games, as he can be too streaky of a shooter at times, but his ability to knock down shots could enable him to make it to the NBA one day.

Terry Taylor’s consistently strong play in both games makes the best player on this day in the June 4th set of basketball games in the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine.
(Photo:
George Robinson/The Leaf-Chronicle)

The Day 2 Standouts of the TBPC, in my opinion:

There were a lot of solid performances in the first five games that were played on June 4th in the Tampa Bay Pro Combine. After looking and watching the first five games, here are the players that stood out to me as having played the best on this day.

The 3 Stars on Day 2 of the Tampa Bay Pro Combine:

  1. Team 1’s Terry Taylor
  2. Team 4’s Mitch Ballock
  3. Team 3’s Troy Baxter

Terry Taylor consistently played well, as he excelled at attacking the hoop to score and rebound the basketball, and he played tough, aggressive defense, but he also showed off a fairly solid outside shot. He was making threes, and he was showing range and the potential to be a three-point shooter in the future. Taylor consistently played well on both ends of the floor to help his team get two early wins in this tournament.

Mitch Ballock did a terrific job of shooting and scoring the basketball, and he was excellent at knocking down three-pointers to provide floor spacing for his team in both games. He also made the go-ahead, game-winning three-point shot in the second game he played on this day, and his sharpshooting and scoring prowess, combined with consistently making sound plays really helps his case to project into a 3 and D role in the NBA.

Troy Baxter had a terrific first game on this day, and he is a very athletic forward that played well on both ends of the floor. He excelled as a scorer off the dribble and on hustle plays, and he would throw down numerous, eye-popping dunks time and time again. He was outstanding as a shot blocker and defender in the first game. Baxter is a top-flight athlete that could project well into a rotation role in the NBA, and he was able to make electrifying plays on both ends of the floor in this tournament. If he can be more consistent with his outside shot, he could lock down a roster spot and provide some quality minutes for a team in the NBA.

Those are my assessments of how the top players did on this day in the June 4th games of the 2021 Tampa Bay Pro Combine. Thanks for reading.

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