I headed over to Franklin yesterday and watched the first round games of the "Quaker Summer Slam."
This is the first chance to see what all the high school basketball teams in the area will look like for next school year. It's always interesting to see how teams look after they lose their seniors and new guys take their spots.
I watched a total of five games. I did not watch them in their entireties as there were games going on at different courts simultaneously.
The first game I watched was between Seattle Prep and Jackson. Seattle Prep is coming off a fourth place finish and Jackson contains one of the state's top player in Brett Kingma.
Word on the street is that he has already been offered a scholarship by Gonzaga. We featured Kingma as our No. 9 player in the state earlier. Kingma did not disappoint.
The first thing I noticed about him is his soft touch, also known as shooter's touch. On fast breaks and runners in the lane, he always got the ball in the basket because of his soft touch, most of his close range shots weren't swishes and rolled off the iron every once in awhile.
Kingma started the game really cold, going 0-for-4. But once he made one three-pointer, he caught fire.
He has incredible confidence in his shot even after missing a handful. He got hot so quick and just started sinking three-pointers from various spots on the court.
He's a little shorter than your typical high school star, but he is able to get high off the floor to get his shot off. Perhaps his most impressive move was his consistent pull-up, step back jumper in transition.
Besides his handful of three-pointers, Kingma had the nicest pull-up jumper I've seen at the high school level. However, he was his team's only option offensively. Prep played their typical strong defense and came away with a 68-62 victory.
The second highly-touted recruit I saw was Josh Smith. This would be my second time seeing Josh play. Like Kingma, he did not disappoint.
I witnessed the first half, and here was his line: 11 points, 9 rebounds. I wonder what his finally tally looked like by the end of the game.
Kentwood's success next season will depend on whether they will be able to feed Smith the ball enough to make him dominate offensively.
If the guards aren't able to feed him, Smith will have to work harder to get open. The man is so powerful. Every time he dunked it I was afraid the hoop was going to rip off the wall.
Perhaps the best play came after Smith missed a close range shot and a Bainbridge player grabbed the rebound. Smith then ripped the ball away from the Bainbridge player, turned around and threw down for a vicious slam.
I hope the Huskies can land this guy. Man.
This game was a 40-point blowout. Tony Wroten was not anywhere to be found. The Bulldogs didn't really need him or anyone else to crush the Eastside Catholic Crusaders.
It looked like a Varsity-JV match; it was ugly. Every player on Garfield had at least 5 inches on each Eastside player (I might be exaggerating).
The Franklin-Sammamish game was a joke, it was more amusing to see McDonald's All-American Peyton Siva dribble and shoot the ball during time-outs.
Franklin has some great talent and will probably compete with Beach for the Metro title again next season.
It looks like Vonchae Richardson will play five years in high school as he was suited up and playing for the Quakers.
Federal Way vs. Blanchet
I don't have a final score on this game, but Federal Way was blowing out Blanchet by 20 points when I left the game. Blanchet lost a couple of Senior leaders and just looked outmatched against the reigning 4A state champions.
Cole Dickerson played well and it just seems like the FW Eagles have a sustainable system in place that will give them success in the long-term.