Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Kentucky Latest to Show Interest in 6-10 Roselle Catholic Freshman Naz Reid
By ADAM ZAGORIA & CHRIS RUSSELLNEW YORK — John Calipari came to the Nike Zoom City Arena in lower Manhattan on Sunday to show love for Kentucky-bound point guard Isaiah Briscoe and uncommitted forward Cheick Diallo.
But the Kentucky coach left talking about Roselle Catholic’s splendid 6-foot-10 freshman Naz Reid.
“[Calipari] asked me to point him out [before the game],” RC coach Dave Boff told SNY.tv after Reid went for 4 points and 7 rebounds and wowed the crowd as RC beat Our Savior New American, 63-59, in the pre-All-Star Game event.
“He’s like, ‘He’s so skilled for a big guy. For a freshman to be that coordinated it’s pretty remarkable.'”
Calipari has already drawn big men Dakari Johnson and Karl-Anthony Towns out of New Jersey, and it’s not hard to imagine Kentucky getting involved for Reid, who still has three more years of high school remaining.
It was also hard for Reid, and everyone else, to miss Calipari sitting courtside in the state-of-the-art basketball facility featuring a full-sized LED basketball court that brings graphics and video to life,
“It was a great experience, I had fun,” Reid told SNY.tv. “Fortunately we won.”
Reid showed off his athleticism with a dunk and a nice spin move into the lane that led to a soft fallaway jumper that rimmed out.
“Thought I played pretty well, I’m getting better,” he said. “Had a couple of turnovers that could have been avoided.”
Reid had quite a weekend for himself.
On Friday night, he flushed a one-handed dunk in transition to posterize Florida-bound big man Noah Dickerson of Montverde (FL) Academy in a 71-64 loss in the Metro Classic at Kean University. (Video here.)
“His upside is off the charts, to be honest,” Boff said. “He’s got he potential because of his size, his skill level and most importantly his basketball IQ, he could be an unbelievable high school player, college player and potentially a pro.
Reid already owns offers from UConn, Virginia, N.C. State, Maryland and Iowa State, among others.
“He’s 6-10 now, he’s athletic, can handle the ball, extremely high IQ , he’s already got offers from schools like Connecticut, multiple other schools,” Ed Bright, the director of the Sports U AAU program that also produced Towns, told SNY.tv. “Naz is going to be special, he’s going to be one of the faces of scholastic basketball for the next three years, there’s no question about that. We’ve had some great ones like Karl Towns, he’s just as skilled was Karl in the ninth grade, and I’d say that Naz has more exposure which is an advantage.”
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.