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July 31, 2008

Vegas events top performers: 2010 Class

MORE: Vegas events top performers: 2009 class | Las Vegas: Day Five | Rivals.com Hoops Tour

The upperclassmen were not the only prospects grabbing the spotlight in Las Vegas last week. Here is a rundown on ten of the top 2010 performers who caught the eyes of the Rivals.com staff.

Vegas Events Top Performers: 2010 Class
Brandon Knight, PG, Team Breakdown
It might be Kenny Boynton's team, but Knight, who averaged 20.4 ppg, was every bit as valuable in Team Breakdown's run to the Reebok Championship. Knight just did everything that a point guard is supposed to do from getting the ball to the hot hand, getting to the rim and finishing, knocking down jumpers, rebounding on the defensive glass and defending at a high level. He used this platform to reestablish himself as the top guard in his class.
Josh Smith, C, Seattle Rotary Select
It is a little scary thinking how good Smith could end up being. At close to 6 feet 10, 270 pounds, he is still expected to grow two or three more inches and the game comes so naturally to him. His rock-solid strength, quick jumping ability and gifted hands allow him to dominate the action around the basket. Smith is truly one of the more advanced centers on both ends of the court to come around in a long time.
Tristan Thompson, SF, Grassroots Canada
For much of the time the guards dominated the action for adidas Super 64 winners Grassroots Canada, but when Thompson got his touches, he took full advantage of the opportunities. With a penchant for attacking the basket off the dribble from close range, he repeatedly got to the foul line in the championship game for a remarkable 22 free throw attempts and then converted in the clutch.
Kyrie Irving, SG, New Jersey Roadrunners
Irving is on his way to establishing himself amongst the top guards in his class. Well put-together and athletic, Irving can score points in bunches and in a variety of ways. On top of his scoring prowess, he also has an advanced feel for the game and persona of a winner. His ability to move fluidly between the point and shooting guard positions only adds to his value.
Dominique Ferguson, SF, Indiana Elite LNO
Ferguson has always been a talent full of potential, but down the stretch this summer he has proven to be a productive player. Playing with more aggression and consistent effort, he has been a force defensively as a shot blocker and rebounder. Offensively, he has put the ball in the basket at a higher rate to compliment his slashing and passing abilities.
Luke Cawthorne, PF, Southeast Elite
From the haircut to his physical frame to his skill package, Cawthorne strongly resembles former Louisville star Pervis Ellison. A long, fluid athlete, Cawthorne can both beat his man down the court as well as chase down rebounds. And when he gets the ball in his hands, he knows what to do with it. He was the No. 11 top scorer in the Rebook tournament averaging 21.8 ppg.
Isiah Epps, PG, Playaz Basketball Club Red
It's safe to say that in most every game Epps played, he was the best guard on the floor. A solid athlete with a left-handed game, Epps scored off the catch and the dribble while also creating scoring opportunities for teammates. Most importantly Epps provided the leadership to go along with his talent to get his club into the final four of the adidas Super 64 16-under bracket.
Jordan McRae, SG, Atlanta Celtics 16U
McRae's Atlanta Celtics team suffered a tough overtime loss early in bracket play, but it wasn't because of a lack of effort or production from McRae, who scored 33 points in the loss. The elite wing athlete did what he has been doing all summer and that is get into the midrange and score over defenders with a soft touch, often off the glass.
Daniel Bejarano, SG, Arizona Stars
Speaking of wing scorers, Bejarano did the same damage in The Main Event that he has been doing on the travel circuit since the beginning of the spring. A strong athlete with great body control, Bejarano has a natural instinct for scoring the ball. He also showed improvement in his ball handling and passing to compliment his scoring prowess.
Anthony Brown, SF, SoCal All Stars
A slender athlete, Brown brings a lot to the table from his wing position. Often he played the role of primary ball handler for his team while also playing the role of shot maker. Brown, who is still growing, also has the length to be disruptive on the defensive end and to make plays around the rim. Best of all, his best ball is ahead of him.

MORE: Vegas events top performers: 2009 class | Las Vegas: Day Five | Rivals.com Hoops Tour



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