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May 17, 2004Quite a few top 2006 prospects played up on the 17-under AAU circuit in the month of April. Here is a list of 12 of the top performers that caught my eye.
Greg Oden- 6-foot-11, 225-pound center (Indianapolis, Indiana)
Oden is not just relying on his size and athleticism, but is playing at a much higher skill level than he played at last summer. He is polishing his post moves and getting better at passing out of the double team.
Daequan Cook- 6-foot-4, 185-pound shooting guard (Dayton, Ohio)
Cook is an athletic, skilled perimeter player who does pretty much everything very well. His athleticism makes him very dangerous in the open court, and he has the skill to do damage in a half court game.
Thaddeus Young- 6-foot-8, 200-pound small forward (Memphis, Tennessee)
Long and athletic, upside is the word for Young. And he is already very good with his blossoming small forward skills.
Derrick Caracter- 6-foot-8, 287-pound power forward (Elizabeth, New Jersey)
He is a load down low, and he has the driving ability to get himself down low from the high post. Surprising mobile for his size, but he does need to watch his size.
Paul Harris- 6-foot-5, 220-pound shooting guard (Niagara Falls, New York)
A very tough competitor, Harris does not really have a true position. He is more of a athletic and powerful point forward who needs to work on his outside shot.
Wayne Chism- 6-foot-8, 230-pound power forward (Jackson, Tennessee)
Chism competes and loves contact. He also has the promise of being a big time scorer with his back to the basket.
Mike Conley, Jr.- 6-foot-1, 170-pound point guard (Indianapolis, Indiana)
Conley has the aura of a winning guard who can do whatever it takes, even if that means knocking down threes and free throws with his right hand while his dominant left hand is injured. Already very skilled, he appears to be improving athletically.
Isaiah Dahlman- 6-foot-6, 175-pound shooting guard (Braham, Minnesota)
Dahlman has the size and skill to be a big time scoring guard. He has a great feel for the game, and there is no telling how good he can be once he gets stronger.
James Keefe- 6-foot-9, 190-pound power forward (Santa Margarita, California)
Keefe is an active athlete who can run the court all day and always seems to be around the ball. He appears to have the potential to develop small forward skills with some more work.
Matt Shaw- 6-foot-8, 230-pound power forward (Los Angeles, California)
Shaw is a heady ball player who knows how to use his body and smarts to make up for any lack of athleticism. He has a nose for the ball and can score with a wide array of moves.
Pierre Niles- 6-foot-7, 230-pound power forward (Memphis, Tennessee)
Niles can dominate both with his large frame in the interior and with his skill on the perimeter. He projects to be a small forward.
Christian Polk- 6-foot-3, 170-pound point guard (Glendale, Arizona)
Polk is equally effective running the team as a point as well as scoring the ball from the wing. He is athletic, can handle, and has range.