My what a difference a day makes. Monday night we watched the Georgia Stars in a sloppy contest, where guards were out-of-control, and it seemed as if there were more turnovers than baskets.
Tuesday offered a completely different looking team.
Malcolm Brogdon played lights out in the afternoon game against the Albany City Rocks. He was patient in getting his shot from 3, drove to the basket at will and played completely under control. He finished with 23 points, and also eight rebounds. He also didn't have a single turnover. His work on the glass stood out, as he pulled many on the backside and was quick to hit an outlet and start the break.
I spoke with him after the game, and he gave all the credit for his play to Tony Parker, the 6-foot-9 big man who arrived a day late to the tournament. But in the morning game, without Tony, Brogdon was 8-for-10 from the field, including 2-of-3 from beyond the arc. Tuesday was a huge day for Brogdon.
I've been keeping tabs on him for some time, and finally was able to confirm his offer sheet. He's picked up offers from Clemson, Georgia, Minnesota and Providence so far, and I expect that number to continue to grow.
Speaking of Tony Parker, he was fresh off a flight back from Germany and he still was the strongest player on the floor. Talking to Parker before the game, he seemed understandably jet-lagged, but that didn't slow him down on the floor.
Playing with a court full of 2011 kids, Tony was the strongest, and most physical kid on the floor. He finished with 13 points, seven rebounds and two blocks. Parker, a Miller Grove rising junior, is one of the best players in the nation in the 2012 class, and he played in front of many, many top coaches Tuesday. He grabbed numerous offensive rebounds, and he runs the floor well.
Here's a nugget for all those who said he was a UConn lock: He told me after the game he's not really feeling the Huskies as much as he was at the beginning of summer.
While we're on the topic of the Georgia Stars, E. Victor Nickerson played really well Tuesday. He is extremely long, and he was playing at the top of a zone defense for the Stars for some of the first half. His length makes him a scary defender, as he has the quickness to man-up point guards, and the length to also pick up post players. Nickerson finished with 13 points and six rebounds.
The Georgia Stars are 3-1 after two days of action.
I also watched Dai-Jon Parker play with the Georgia Netburners at the Peach State Showcase, and I came away impressed with his overall athleticism and instincts.
He had trouble shooting the ball, but he didn't force the issue once he realized his jumper wasn't working. He is an exceptional passer, and he looked to create for his teammates whenever possible. You can tell he's played football, because he has great body control. He made a couple of nice drives, drawing contact and finishing strong. I didn't get to see Parker's on the ball defense that much, but he played good help defense and was one of the least selfish players I watched Tuesday. Milton has one of the best high school backcourts around with both Parker and Ohio State commit Shannon Scott paired together.
Speaking of Scott, he had another mind blowing second half performance Tuesday. That's been his trademark of the tournament so far, as he has taken some time to get settled in during games in the first half. Once the final period starts though, Scott comes to life. He controlled the second half in a game yesterday after his Southern Kings Gold squad found itself down at halftime again. He got rolling by driving to basket, instead of settling for jumpers.