- Shaedon Sharpe
An elite scoring off-guard with a combination of burst, fluidity and touch as a three level scorer. Sharpe continues to rise because of his two-way trajectory and advanced offensive skillset paired with a high ceiling defensively. A nuclear scorer who not only just got his own, but thoroughly elevated the group around him. Physically mature with the handle, strength and speed to get to his spots. His knack to change speeds and control tempo were advanced, as he was dominant in transition and in the half-court. Extended shooter of the dribble who’s potent as a decision maker coming downhill. The ability to create advantages in the half court with or without screens in addition to advance a shot creation package separate him at the top.
2. Keyonte George
A prominent scorer with powerful athleticism and the ability to finish through the chest of rim protectors on drives. End to end, one of the fastest players in the nation with a developed pull-up scoring game and grit defensively. With an advantage in transition or in the pick and roll, George is arguably the most productive scorer in the country. A true centerpiece weapon and an all-around catalyst on the offensive end.
3. Dariq Whitehead
A physical specimen on the wing with above the rim athleticism and a blossoming offensive skillset. Defensive toughness, instincts and high level lateral quickness make Whitehead the cream of the crop in terms of perimeter defenders in the class. His ability to attack when need be, pick his spots accordingly and constantly play under control jumped out. Perimeter mechanics are polished and his ability to shoot with a hand in his face was second to only Emoni Bates this Summer. For an above the rim, spectacular athlete to rarely rely on those physical abilities at the prep level is rare, and Whitehead only continues to blossom as a dynamic two-way wing.
4. Chris Livingston
A physical two way wing who thrives getting downhill and attacking the rim. A high motor and mature 6-6 and 200 pound frame make Livingston a versatile defender, transition dynamo and mid-post scoring hub. The progression as a spot up shooter has stood out throughout the Summer and is the catalyst to the jump from the 9-10 range. Livingston is slightly more under the radar than many elite prospects, but should garner more attention if the progression continues in terms of polish.
5. Amari Bailey
An explosive, hard-nosed offensive catalyst who can play both and off the ball. A smooth southpaw spot up game combined with subtle playmaking instincts and explosive athleticism make Bailey one of the most polished prospects in the nation. Missing Summer action hurts his ranking, but it’s difficult to drop a gifted, polished initiator too far.
6. Cason Wallace
A smooth spot up game, turnover machine on the defensive end and a transition dynamo. Wallace can play both guard spots and utilizes a potent first step to open his playmaking game as a driver. Tough, explosive and versatile contributor to winning basketball. For a high profile prospect, Wallace does all the little things. His high end outcome could be heavily defensive weighted, with wide shoulders, elite lateral quickness and active hands result in a ton of steals. A playmaker on both ends.
7. Kyle Filipowski
An extraordinarily unique talent as a versatile big. Arguably the most competitive prospect I evaluated this Summer, Filipowski can serve the role as a rim running big, but has opened his game up far beyond – showing production in a point forward role as a grab and go threat and out of the high post. A clear focus on his ball handling and playing low to the ground, at 6-11 and 230 pound he is one of the premier playmakers in the class. It will pay dividends later on, but Filipowski is extremely crafty and intelligent as a pick setter, creating a strong advantage for his ball handlers coming off and often sets himself up for easy finishes at the rim. In my eyes, Filipowski stands alone in this class in terms of being a true offensive hub and centerpiece in the frontcourt. I walked away thoroughly impressed with every outing as I was able to see a new facet of his skillset each time, before it was cut short due to COVID. If Filipowski remained healthy in Rens run, I believe he’d likely be squarely in the national eye as a top 12 prospect in the class. Generally I de-value bigs overall, but Filipowski checks so many rare boxes.
8. Anthony Black
Black’s live ball playmaking can certainly improve and might be a next progression, but his overall decision making a processing in the PnR is arguably the most advanced in 2022. He’s shown the ability to slide both on and off the ball at NBPA top 100, while largely flourishing as a creative initiator with Empire. Defensively, strengthening his frame will be a next step, per usual for most, but his positioning and disruption have opened up some multi-dimensional tendencies on that end. High school prospects often are deemed as having NBA tools at a young – those tools are primarily evaluated as physical components, whether it’s length, burst or strength. Anthony Black has NBA tools in his ability to digest coverages, play with pace, playmaking with high level floor mapping and understanding of spacing. I see a lot of Tyrese Haliburton here. As unique of a prospect as Haliburton was in terms of his creation and ability to elevate those around him, Black provides a similar impact.
9. Jordan Walsh
After speaking with a variety of people in the evaluation industry at Peach Jam, one thing was clear when watching Jordan Walsh – NBA evaluators are going to love him. Extremely tough, hard-nosed and competitive with a consistent will to put his imprint on the game. Long arms, explosive athlete, above the rim finisher, strong change of pace, pull-up shooting and versatility on the defend end.
10. Zion Cruz
Consistent assertiveness is an overarching key, but Zion Cruz is a gifted three level shot creator with an enticing explosiveness as an initiator. At 6-5 with a clean, controlled handle, Cruz has a go-to float game in combination with a proficient spot up shooting stroke. Dynamic off the dribble with wide shoulders, efficient gather into an elevated pull up and a quick snap handle. Primarily handles duties on ball, and has the size to shift off alongside another crafty handler with buzz growing regarding his eventual collegiate destination.
11. Derek Lively
The nation’s top rim protector with a flourishing spot up perimeter game on the other end. Derek Lively is much more than that, but that in itself makes him a premier NBA prospect. The term unicorn is overused, but the Peach Jam champion is all that, as few can truly do what he does. Adding to 20-30 pounds would go a long way towards becoming more productive as an interior scorer, but what Lively does already has him squarely on the NBA radar. With a relatively diminishing value in tradition bigs, Lively maintains an ultra-unique prospect as a cemented spot up threat.
12. Dillon Mitchell
Mitchell has significantly rose nationally over the course of the last few months. Arguably the top athlete in the country, Mitchell displayed advanced off the dribble playmaking in which I was unaware of. Mitchell showed mass progression with his ability to break defenses down to find shooters and cutters. A smooth lefty spot up stroke only continues to improve and become a weapon, as the combination of his handle and production around the rim make up the incredibly high ceiling I am eager to follow. Defensively, Mitchell defends 5 spots, is extremely mobile and has strong instincts in the passing lanes.
13. Skyy Clark
A fluid, crafty lead guard with extreme pace initiating offense and escorting the pick and roll. Primarily plays below the rim, but can slide both and off the ball with his understanding of how to attack space. More than many in this class, Clark has plenty of nuance to his scoring package utilizing cuts, side steps and an enticing float game once downhill. Polished, balanced spot up game. A few top prospects missed the Summer with injury, and Clark simply cant be dropped too far with his dynamic offensive skillset at this stage.
14. Nick Smith Jr
The dual threat guard notably rose his stock throughout EYBL play and departs as a headliner. An multi-faceted offensive catalyst with proven extended range, an enticing, natural floater game and strong feel as a set-up man. Always under control, Smith is extremely nuanced as a scorer with a knack for getting to the line and playing angles as a driver.
15. Dior Johnson
A fluid, creative offensive engineer with a palpable basketball IQ. Johnson can fill it up and flourishes as an off the dribble scorer. Elite touch, a smooth floater game and all-around flair as a creator. Johnson’s natural talent, change of pace, production on the glass and scoring polish all make up a skillset that simply screams “pro”. There is a sense of ease with all Dior Johnson does offensively.
16. Ty Rodgers
Elite lateral quickness, shot blocking instincts and clear-cut grit on the defensive end. Rodgers stamps himself as the top perimeter defender in the country, and going through the gauntlet of Emoni Bates, Jordan Walsh, Dillon Mitchell, Shaedon Sharpe, Dariq Whitehead and Eric Dailey among others in North Augusta allowed him to put that on display. An instinctual, physical, hard-nosed perimeter defender who has the lateral quickness, toughness and strength to take on the opposing teams catalyst game in and game out. An extremely strong rebounder who embraces contact and plays bigger than he is at 6-6 and 210 pounds. Rodgers is a timely cutter who finishes above the rim. A true defensive ace who continues to sho ample growth offensively as a lead playmaker.
17. Jazian Gortman
A jitterbug offensive engine with toughness. Gortman impressed me on the defensive end and is a true menace on the perimeter. Hard-nosed and never takes a play off. Dynamic in the pick and roll and is arguably the fastest player in the country end to end. Great touch and a feel to space in the pick and roll, Gortman will continue to develop his attack and become more assertive as a creator.
18. Jarace Walker
High flying, powerful and physical athlete with enticing playmaking flashes and an advanced handle for his size. Walker has been groomed under a crop of elite prospects under IMG and now appears to be next in line. Having a more versatile, consistent impact on the game is a key progression, but Walker is a strong rebounder and slides in well in both oversized or small lineups. Mature lower body strength and an imposing upper body frame give him the tools to be a bruising interior presence. The playmaking tools have long stood out for me, as he has a unique feel to hit lob threats and shooters out of the low post and top of the key. Walker’s skillset is greatly enhanced when in a more supplemental role.
19. Kel’el Ware
Ware has quickly become one of the top big prospects in the nation as a prominent two-way athlete at 7-0 and 220 pounds with palpable touch as a roll man and on the perimeter. Flexible athlete attacking the cup with true upside on the defensive end. Ample length and activity as a rim runner. The continued development of his touch as well as lower body strength will hinge points of Ware’s path.
20. Seth Trimble
Trimble’s understanding of the game, how to space the floor and attack seams makes him an intriguing prospect looking ahead to the NBA. The Wisconsin-native is never rushed and was electric as a playmaker playing alongside profound floor spacers. One of the higher IQ lead guards in the EYBL, Trimble was impactful on both ends, stuffed the stat sheet, processed the game at a rapid rate and got his own on the perimeter and in the mid-range when his team needed it. Trimble does a ton of things that will translate rather quickly to the next level and beyond. In addition to his first step, Trimble is a better than advertised athlete.
21. Arterio Morris
A nuanced, powerful slasher with a lightening quick first step and growing polish once downhill. Clean spot up shooter with confidence against closeouts. Dominant in transition with a head of steam as a finisher or playmaker. Has the tools to be a high volume free throw shooter with his lack of apprehensiveness driving through the chest of rim protectors.
22. Brandon Miller
A bouncy forward with strong creative tendencies in the mid-range, Miller was constantly guarding bigger prospects and held his own as a shot blocker and rebounder. Skilled off the dribble, Miller has touch and a high release with a productive interior game. A multi-faceted defender with range, quick jumping ability and strong instincts.
23. Chance Westry
Versatility is an overused term, but it is the name of the game with Westry. A do-it-all 6-6 wing creator with strong change of pace and a palpable playmaking feel. Advanced ball handling and floor mapping make Westry one of the more dynamic manipulators as an initiator. Still wiry thin, the Hillcrest Prep guard racks of the steals defensively. It may sound basic, but Westry is a productive threat as a passer, ball handler and shooter already.
24. Jaden Bradley
Bradley is as steady and mature as they come as a prep lead guard. Off the dribble shooting is advanced and he is rarely disrupted by contests with high elevation on his jumper. Never sped up, Bradley is a natural, productive shot creator. Exceptional toughness and change of pace make up for solid, not great pop. End to end, Bradley is one of the faster prospects in America.
25. Vince Iwuchukwu
Iwuchukwu’s recent progression and upside largely stood out to me over the recent months. There are very few athletes, if any, on the same level as 7-0 and 220 pound Vince Iwuchukwu. He showed a growing willingness to create out of the post, a relatively new facet for the prominent rim runner. Sweep throughs and over the left shoulder hooks became go-to’s. Embracing contact and finishing through traffic are next steps, but Iwuchukwu is undervalued nationally in my opinion
26. Mark Mitchell
Mitchell also missed action this Summer with an elbow injury, but has long enticed with his upside as a lengthy, southpaw forward with some range. With extreme range as a rebounder, Mitchell is a prominent transition tool running the floor and utilizing his length and pop to finish at the rim on the other end. Attacking closeouts, absorbing contact at the rim and getting to his euro are go-to sources of production. There’s plenty of untapped tools here, but I am relatively unsure of the trajectory at this point.
27. Jalen Hood-Schifino
Hood-Schifino’s maturation and production largely tell the story. With length and a sturdy frame, the Montverde guard can shift both on and off the ball and has come a long way to become one of the more impactful perimeter defenders in the class. Dynamic playing off his hang dribble as a pull up threat or driver – crafty getting his shoulder under defenders and snaking to the rim. Strong backcourt rebounder and is a physical slasher with touch.
28. Tyrell Ward
Nuclear scorer with extreme touch and a rare pull up scoring game. Ultra-competitive, Ward is a fluid wing creator who lit it up from the perimeter and impressed as a shot maker against contests. The wiry wing plays above the rim in transition and relentlessly throws himself through the chest of rim protectors. Subtle with his change of pace and pull up with a clear focus on playing low to the ground made Ward one of the tougher guards in the Nike circuit.
29. AJ Casey
Casey fits the bill as what has become the prototypical bridging forward with a traditional wing skillset while being able to guard 3-4 positions defensively. A rangy, selfless wing with a developing shooting stroke hinging on palpable confidence with a subtle playmaking skillset. Casey flourishes in the mid-post playing out of double teams, absorbing contact around the rim or rising up to find his own shot with strong elevation. Whether it’s attacking closeouts, playmaking or getting to the rack, Casey has a unique ability to clean the glass, lead the break to get out & run game in & game out. A high powered athlete, rim running presence and a constant source of energy.
30. Collin Chandler
Chandler has garnered heightened recognition after a strong Summer, concluding with eye catching runs at the NBPA Top 100 camp and the Circuit Championship. Crafty and creative at 6-4 with an ease getting to his spots. Nuanced pick and roll attack and high speed processor as a playmaker. Smooth shooter off the dribble with flair as a perimeter creator. Ample touch, a high IQ and the end-to-end speed to control tempo each time out.