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December is here and that marks the return of the HighSchoolOT.Com Holiday Invitational. (Formerly known as the Glaxo Smith Kline Holiday Invitational)
Easily one of the best Non-AAU tournaments in the country, the invite has hosted many famous college and pro basketball players.
Some examples include:
- Allan Houston
- John Wall
- Rajon Rondo
- Luol Deng
- Josh Smith
- Jerry Stackhouse
- Mike Miller
- Jason Kidd
- Penny Hardaway
- Matt Bonner
- Karl Anthony-Towns
- Ryan Kelly
This year will feature some of the most electrifying players in high school basketball, in addition to some new faces hoping to have break out performances.
These are the teams in each bracket:
John Wall Bracket
- High Point Christian Academy
- Trinity Christian Academy
- Cypress Lakes, Texas
- Jay Robinson
- Wesleyan Christian Academy
- Carlisle School (VA)
- Virginia Episcopal (VA)
- Arlington Country Day (FL)
David West Bracket which (consists of teams from North Carolina)
- Broughton (host school)
- Voyager Academy
- Panther Creek
- Terry Sanford
Here are some players to get excited for in this year’s invite.
De’Aaron Fox – 6-3 Point Guard – Cypress Lakes High School – Class of 2016
— Joel Weckerly (@CyFairJoel) November 30, 2015
In a class stacked with point guard talent (Dennis Smith Jr., Frank Jackson is listed as a SG on ESPN but is a point guard, Lonzo Ball, Kobi Simmons, and Jaylen Fisher to name a few), Fox rests at the top. With college ready athleticism and a serviceable jump shot to boot, one can expect Fox to collect a lot of points this tournament. Fox is left-handed, but he is adept at going both ways and finishing with either hand at the rim.
Kentucky signee De'Aaron Fox with 31 points, 12 rebounds and 6 assists in Cypress Lakes' 68-53 win vs. Andrew Jones and Irving Mac Arthur.
— Chris Fisher (@ChrisFisher247) November 29, 2015
Below is a video of Fox in the season opener when the other team decided to full court press. Fox scored 44 points.
Keep an eye on this Kentucky University commit. A backcourt combination of him and Malik Monk in Wildcat Blue will be a must see TV event.
Edrice “Bam Bam” Adebayo – 6’8 Power Forward – High Point Christian Academy – Class of 2016
Speaking of Kentucky commits, Adebayo is one of the premier power forwards for the class of 2016.
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) November 18, 2015
Adebayo is a big-man with crazy athleticism, strength and mobility. Adebayo is able to bully his way down on the block and is constantly expanding his post repertoire. What stands out about his game though is his ability at the rim. Adebayo is a relentless rebounder and challenges other players to be stronger at the rim if they want to prevent Adebayo from throwing the shot into the basket. You can guarantee that this #HoopState power forward will bring a high amount of energy to the court.
Sacha Killeya-Jones – 6-11 Power Forward – Virginia Episcopal School (VA)
Another Kentucky commit, Killeya-Jones is a very skilled big man that will work well with Adebayo on the Wildcat frontcourt. Killeya-Jones game is not as above-the-rim as Adebayo, but the VA prospect is extremely talented and fundamentally sound. Killeya-Jones has exceptional footwork and patience at the post. That and a smooth jump shot with range out to the three-point line makes Killeya- Jones a player to watch out for. Killeya-Jones has a chance to have an exceptional college career, if he decides to stay at Kentucky long enough.
Congrats to Sacha Killeya-Jones on his outstanding performance vs. Huntington Prep
10-10 FT pic.twitter.com/jEwccN4Or6
— Rick Lewis (@Coach_Rick57) December 1, 2015
Justice Kithcart – 6-1 Point Guard – Virginia Episcopal School (VA)
Kithcart is fearless. The Pittsburgh commit possesses great body control. His foot always seems to be on the gas pedal, but never rushed. He has many moves that allow him to get to the basket, but is at his best when in transition. It is awesome to watch the other team struggling to guard him as he goes to work at the half court or is in transition. Kithcart is an absolute hawk on defense as well, using his quick feet and fast hands to disrupt the opposing point guard.
— Rick Lewis (@Coach_Rick57) November 15, 2015
Kwe Parker – 6-2 Shooting Guard – Wesleyan Christian Academy
Parker has impressive hops. It always seems like he is flying or is using something to propel him upward. Over the years, Parker has proven to scouts that he is more than just a dunker. He is listed as a shooting guard, as has played next to Dennis Smith Jr. and Brandon Childress. This season is the first time he will be a number 1 option.
Kwe Parker has played alongside Dennis Smith Jr. and Harry Giles. This tournament is an excellent chance to prove that he can carry a team.
Barnes said 6-0 G Kwe Parker will make highlight plays. `He will win every dunk contest in the country. He’s freaky. He's a jumnkyard dog’
— Jimmy Hyams (@JimmyHyams) November 23, 2015
Lavar Batts Jr. – 6-1 Point Guard – Jay Robinson High School
Batts is one of the players with an opportunity to gain the most from this tournament. He is an athletic point guard with court vision and a new and improved jump shot. Batts makes a lot of passes and dunks with his left hand, but he shoots with his right, making him very dangerous player in both half court and full court plays. Currently he is a four-star getting attention from local schools, but this tournament can be a launching pad for Batts as recruits will have all eyes on him.
Lavar Batts has changed his jump shot, not falling yet but looks a lot better. Progress.
— Brandon Nelson (@_BrandonNelson) November 28, 2015
Other players to watch out for
Ty Graves,6-0 Point Guard, High Point Christian
Boston College commit
Without question Boston College commit Ty Graves of HPCA has been in the gym…Body has transformed, looks college ready @CHoopsChallenge
— Jamie Shaw (@JamieShaw5) November 29, 2015
Shakur Daniel, 6-5 Shooting Guard, Carlisle School
Class of 2018. Garnering interest from Georgetown and Virginia among others.
— Carlisle Chiefs (@CarlisleChiefs_) November 16, 2015
To follow along with the HighSchoolOT.com Invite, follow me on twitter @KofieSpeaks and the hashtag #HSOTInvite
Cat Barber sat next to me at the #HSOTInvite…. not important I just wanted to say it
— The 1st KofKage (@KofieYeboah) March 22, 2015