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Tuesday / October 23.
  • Panthers Win Reebok 17 & Under Title; Isiah Lands Point Guard; Sunday Recruiting Roundup

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    Coached by Rafer Alston of the Nets, the New York Panthers won the U17 championship at the Hoop Group Summer Classic in Neptune, N.J. with an 84-63 victory over God’s Glory.

    Sterling Gibbs of Seton Hall Prep, Deshaun Wiggins of Wings Academy, Winston Graham of Lee Academy and Ryan Rhoomes of Cardozo all played well for the Panthers.

    Wiggins had a team-high 20 points in the final, Graham scored 18, Gibbs tallied 15 points and Armani Cotton added 12. Rhoomes added 10 points.

    The Panthers played without Rod Odom (who was in Springfield) and J.J. Moore (back injury).

    “It just means were still consistent,” Panthers head Gary Charles said. “Skip [Alston] came in and  did a nice job with these kids and he’s been practicing for three weeks. We’re extremely happy to be able to win the Reebok Summer Championship.”

    In the semifinals, Gibbs had 16 and Wiggins 15 as the Panthers downed Kyrie Irving and the New Jersey Roadrunners. Irving and Paterson Catholic’s Jermaine Peart scored 16 apiece.

    Coaches from Duke, Indiana, Texas A&M, Seton Hall, Rutgers, West Virginia, Fordham, La Salle, George Washington, Siena, Rider and Quinnipiac all watched the Gibbs-Irving battle.

    “Lost in the semifinals to ny panthers,” Irving tweeted. “Overall good tournament…a new road I’m taking and alot more steps to climb to reach my potential.”

    Anybody doubt this guy’s commitment to improving? He later tweeted that he will work out on Monday at St. Patrick.


    Florida International coach Isiah Thomas has received yet another commitment, this one from point guard Phil Taylor, a 5-9, 160-pound a Brooklyn native playing at Marietta (GA) Wheeler.

    “It’s a really, really good get for him [Isiah],” Dave Telep, national recruiting director of Scout, told Jeff Goodman. “He’s a small guy with quickness and toughness who has one of those personalities where he can attract other kids.”

    Thomas got a comittment last week from 6-foot-10 Chris Coleman, who chose FIU over high-majors like UConn and Syracuse.

    “It’s my dream to play with someone in the Hall of Fame,” Taylor told Goodman. “He does what I do and as a kid, he’s one of the guys I patterned my game after.”

    Taylor  averaged 21 points and 7 assists last season while leading Wheeler to a state title. He said he was also recruited by Miami, Oregon, Xavier, Arizona and Richmond.


    **Gibbs, a rising junior whose older brother Ashton Gibbs is a rising sophomore at Pittsburgh, previously told me Villanova was his favorite school.

    Still, he said he plans to visit Oklahoma, Pitt, Villanova, Indiana and DePaul this summer. Indiana, Rutgers, Seton Hall and Georgia Tech are also involved.

    “I’m wide open with my recruitment,” he said last week. “I hope to take some visits in August and see where it goes from there.”

    **The 6-8 Rhoomes has drawn interest from George Washington, Temple, Rhode Island, George Mason, Virginia Commonwealth and La Salle.

    **Seton Hall and Rutgers both watched Plainfield guard Tyrone Johnson of New Jersey Elite, according to Alex Schwartz. Johnson has a lot of interest but Georgetown is thought to be the leader.

    **Seton Hall assistant Scott Adubato was on hand to watch Irving and the Pirates are the only team to watch him at every one of his games so far during the July period. Head coach Bobby Gonzalez and assistants Adubato and Derm Player watched Irving in Cleveland and Adubato or Kevin Murphy has been on hand the last few days at Reebok.

    **SHU’s Player is at the Peach Jam checking out a slew of talented players: Michael Gilchrist, Doron Lamb, Rakeem Christmas, Tony Wroten, Shane Southwell, Kyle Anderson, Myles Mack, Derrick Randall, Desmond Hubert, Vaughn Gray and Seton Hall commit Fuquan Edwin.

    **The 6-5 Edwin had 14 points and 6 rebounds in a 60-7 Playaz win over the Oakland Soldiers.

    **The 5-8 Mack, also out of Paterson (N.J.) Catholic dropped 25 points  in a loss to Mack Irvin from Chicago in the 16U bracket.

    **Many coaches from the Peach Jam are raving about Gilchrist, and Kentucky’s John Calipari and Rod Strickland were also reportedly following him.

    **Alex Schwartz reports that St. Anthony guard Elijah Carter told him Richmond was his top choice.

    **Dave Telep tweets that Harrison Barnes, the top prospect in the Class of 2010, “needs stitches on his non shooting hand. Could b on da shelf.”

    **Jeff Goodman reports on his blog that Marquis Teague, younger brother of Jeff Teague, nearly committed to Louisville a few months ago.

    “I was ready, but my dad told me to slow it down,” Teague told Goodman.

    Teague’s father, Shawn, played for Louisville coach Rick Pitino when Pitino was at BU.


    Ed Butler is hosting an event on Wednesday at J.P. Stevens H.S. in Edison (NJ). Free Admission. The following are some of the players participating:

    Matthew Washington (6’10)…(Paterson Catholic)…Redlands (OK)
    C.C…looking at Seton Hall, Manhattan, Middle Tennessee & others

    Madut Bol (6’8″)…(St. Anthony/Edison Academy)

    Chris Abney (6’9)…Westchester (NY) C.C.

    Charlton Wilson (6’8″)…(Linden H.S.)…Sheridan (WY) C.C.

    Mark Kolb (6’8″)…Bernards (NJ) H.S.

    Michael Simpson (6’6″)…Winslow Twp. H.S.

    Daveon Boardingham (6’6″)…Shabazz H.S.

    Elvonny Poole (6’5″)…Bayonne H.S.

    James Albano (6’5)…Ridgewood H.S.

    Dequan Simmons (6’5″)…Englewood H.S.

    Zach Anderson (6’3″)…Englewood H.S.

    Djim Bandoumel (6’8″)…Monroe (NY) J.C.

    Miles Beatty (6’2″)…(St. Anthony/ GWU/Blinn (TX) C.C.)

    Andre Blackwood (6’1″)…Paramus Catholic

    Eddie Johnson (6’0)…Paramus Catholic

    Jamell Cromartie (6’0)…Monroe (NY) C.C.

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.