Athletes of the Week Dec. 29

December 29, 2017
Jaymeir Garnett

The 6-foot-4 Smyrna wing went off for 30 points on 12-for-21 shooting to lead his Eagles to an 86-53 drubbing of Howard in the opening game of the Slam Dunk to the Beach holiday tournament in Lewes. Garnett did it all for unbeaten Smyrna, adding 10 rebounds, five assists and a three-pointer from the Pepsi logo. “There are a lot of scouts here, which adds some pressure ... but it’s really my teammates who allowed me to do what I did,” said the ever-humble junior, who has no college offers as of yet. That’s sure to change after he went straight-up supernova at Slam Dunk. 

Juwan Gary

Gray Collegiate (S.C.) uber-athlete Juwan Gary was unstoppable in his team’s loss to Roselle Catholic (N.J.) on the first day of Slam Dunk to the Beach, scoring 37 points and grabbing 14 boards. Gary, a 6-foot-6 junior wing with some of the best bounce in the country, provided the highlight of the night session when he nearly kissed the rim on a baseline alley-oop late in the third quarter. A consensus top-50 recruit in his class, Gary has Connecticut, North Carolina State and others on his short list. “I’m a coachable player, and I try to be a coach on the floor,” he said. 

Nazreon Reid

When recruiting analysts discuss this 6-foot-10 beast from Roselle Catholic (N.J.), the word “potential” always seems to come up. Blessed with Chris Paul’s handles and Bill Russell’s build, Reid has long had college coaches and NBA scouts salivating over what he might become. He fulfilled that potential on the opening day of Slam Dunk to the Beach, dazzling onlookers en route to 23 points and 12 rebounds in a win over Gray Collegiate (S.C.). “I model my game after Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins,” said the LSU commit, ESPN’s 18th-ranked senior. “I score, rebound, dive on the floor – I try to do it all.” 

Simisola Shittu

A cerebral kid who values academics as much as basketball, the 6-foot-10 Shittu showed off his sky-high hoops IQ and an equally impressive vertical leap in Vermont Academy’s blowout win over Sidwell Friends (D.C.) on the first day of Slam Dunk to the Beach. The Vanderbilt pledge posted 21 points, 11 boards and six rim-rattling dunks, leading and finishing the Wildcats’ fast break all night. “I take different skills from different players – Giannis Antetotounmpo, LeBron [James], Ben Simmons,” said Shittu, ranked sixth in the senior class nationally by ESPN. “My playmaking and scoring the ball [are my strengths].”