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New England Early AAU Season 2023 Eyecatchers Part One

Ethan Dias 6’5 Combo Forward (BCRI/Marianapolis Prep): Dias has a smooth stroke from long range. He has good mechanics on his shot. Makes three-pointers at a solid rate when spotting up. Gets to his soft mid-range pull-up well when using a ball screen. Dias finishes effectively around the rim through contact when attacking closeouts. Also can get by opponents with a quick crossover move. He takes advantage of mismatches in the post. Has a well-built frame to back down opponents and create high percentage finishing opportunities. Defensively, Dias is impressive on the glass. Uses his high motor to come up with 50-50 balls and strength when boxing out to be a volume rebounder.


Darryl Simmons 5’10 Point Guard (Expressions Elite/Putnam Science Academy): Simmons is a very good passer. Regularly gets into the lane with his quick first step and crossover or inside-out moves. Finds teammates well for high percentage drop-off layup opportunities. Also makes plays for others out of ball screens, hitting rolling teammates for finishes around the rim. While Simmons looks to get others involved first, he also needs to be accounted for as a scorer. Is a threat from beyond the arc, making treys on standstill attempts or when pulling up on ball screens. When bigger opponents collapse on him in the paint and take away his passing lanes, Simmons can score with a high-arching teardrop. He is a pesky defender who makes it difficult for opposing point guards to get into their offense. Has the lateral quickness to effectively pick up opponents full-court.


Connor Jenkins 6’6 Combo Forward (The House We Built/Williston Northampton): Jenkins is a consistent floor-spacing threat from deep. Has a high release point, making it difficult for opponents to contest his attempts. He makes three-pointers at a good rate on pick and pops or when spotting up. Jenkins has a soft mid-range pull-up that he gets to well when attacking closeouts. Also is a solid pick and roll passer, finding teammates rolling to the basket for high percentage finishes. Has the ball skills after pulling down a rebound to start a fast break and find teammates for cutting layups or spot-up treys. Defensively, Jenkins generates steals or deflections at a good rate. Uses his good anticipation and length to constantly be around the ball in passing lanes.


Jason Ofcarcik 6’6 Power Forward (Rhode Island Elite/Woodstock Academy): Ofcarcik is a legitimate stretch four. Makes treys effectively on standstill attempts. When opponents close out hard on him from the perimeter, he can put the ball on the floor and score around the basket through contact. He is a skilled finisher around the rim. Has a nice spin move on the block and gets opponents up in the air with ball fakes to create better scoring angles for himself. Ofcarcik regularly generates high percentage finishing opportunities by being in the dunker spot at the right times for teammates to dump the ball off to him. Also moves well without the ball, finding open seams in defenses around the hoop. Defensively, Ofcarcik is a solid rim protector. Uses his mobility and vertical leap to block or alter opponents’ shots when coming over from the help side.


Ray Johnson 6’0 Combo Guard (ASA Select/Marianapolis Prep): Johnson is a reliable shooter from long-range. Makes three-pointers at a solid rate on pull-up attempts or when spotting up. Gets into the lane well to create for himself and others with his sharp through the legs or subtle change of pace moves. Johnson finishes effectively around the rim with good body control and soft touch off the glass on finger-roll layups. When opponents collapse on him in the paint, he does a nice job finding teammates for drop-off layups. He also generates high percentage finishing opportunities near the basket for himself as an instinctual off-ball cutter.


Jaydan Exalus 6’3 Combo Forward (Rise Above Basketball/Cardinal Spellman HS): Exalus is a proficient scorer in the interior. Excels at catching the ball in the mid-post and taking opposing forwards off the dribble with his quick first step. Finishes around the rim through contact with his brawny frame. He can also get to the basket when attacking closeouts and create better scoring angles for himself using a spin-move on help defenders. Exalus cannot be left open from beyond the arc. Makes treys at a good rate on standstill attempts. Generates second chance layup opportunities off his own misses near the basket with a quick second jump. Defensively, he makes his presence felt on the glass. Exalus has the strength and toughness to corral important rebounds and limit opponents from getting additional scoring chances.


Javari Ellison 6’6 Combo Forward (New England Storm/Bishop Guertin HS): Ellison can space the floor effectively from downtown. The southpaw hits three-pointers at a solid rate when spotting up. Creates high percentage finishing opportunities for himself on the offensive glass with his constant aggression and leaping ability. Ellison also makes quick cuts to the basket for layups when an opponent is overplaying him on the perimeter. He is a good passer. Uses his size to see over the top of defenders and find teammates for cutting finishes. Defensively, Ellison does a nice job using his length to make it difficult for opponents to rise over him.


Oscar Edelman 6’8 Center/Power Forward (Rens United/Green Farms Academy): Edelman needs to be accounted for from three-point range. He makes treys at a good rate on standstill attempts. When opponents close out hard on him from the perimeter, he can put the ball on the floor and score proficiently at the rim with a soft touch off the glass. Edelman creates high percentage finishing opportunities for himself in transition with his mobility. Consistently beats opposing big men down the floor for layups. Also has the ball skills to initiate a fast break when pulling down a rebound. Defensively, Edelman is terrific on the glass. Uses his high motor and well-built frame when boxing out to rebound at an impressive rate.


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