NORTH AUGUSTA, SC — The final two summers, NBA scouts have been allowed to attend Nike’s Peach Jam and get an early eye on the highest expertise arising, notably the incoming highschool senior class that could be draft eligible in two quick years. In the case of Shaedon Sharpe, probably the most mysterious participant taken in the 2022 NBA draft, Peach Jam was the one place NBA scouts obtained to see him play in a five-on-five aggressive setting as a result of he sat out your entire season at Kentucky.
Last week, a number of NBA groups had been represented and stayed your entire occasion as the highest gamers from Nike’s Elite Youth Basketball League had been competing in the 15U, 16U and 17U division of Peach Jam.
When asking NBA expertise evaluators who the most effective prospects had been, it wasn’t anybody from the highest 17U groups, it was a pair of 15-year-olds model new to the scene: Cooper Flagg, 6-foot-9 ahead out of Maine , and Cameron Boozer, 6-foot-8 ahead out of Florida.
“This is the primary time I’ve ever scouted a participant with a mouth stuffed with braces,” one NBA scout informed Yahoo Sports. “They’re younger and there is a lot of time for each [Flagg and Boozer]however there’s a lot to love about their sport.”
Flagg was contemporary off a gold medal win representing Team USA in Spain for the FIBA U17 World Cup and has been the most well liked title since hitting the AAU circuit in April.
“It was just a good expertise to exit and symbolize our nation,” Flagg informed Yahoo Sports. “This spring and summer season has passed by like a blur, just about. But I’m just making an attempt to take it in the future at a time and deal with staying in the fitness center and maintain working.”
Adjustments to the one-and-done rule coming quickly
NBA commissioner Adam Silver mentioned he was hopeful for a change to the present 19-year-old age restrict rule that requires gamers to be one yr faraway from highschool rule when he addressed the media earlier this month. During his annual information convention on the conclusion of the league’s board of governors conferences, Silver mentioned, “I believe there’s a chance [to change it].”
“It’s [based on] bigger conversations than just whether or not we go from 19 to 18, however I’m on file: When I steadiness all of those numerous issues, I believe that may be the precise factor to do and I’m hopeful that that is a change we make in this subsequent collective bargaining cycle, which can occur in the subsequent couple of years.”
With this data contemporary in the staff’s minds, it was a precedence to get eyes on the primary wave of gamers that could successfully go straight from highschool to the professionals, one thing that hasn’t occurred since 2005. The group in query is Flagg’s and Cooper’s 2025 highschool class.
This is why, for the primary time at Nike’s Peach Jam, there have been a number of NBA scouts (some arriving half-hour earlier than tipoff) lining the courtside seats for 15U video games.
Yahoo Sports breaks down the highest 2025 highschool prospects that headlined Peach Jam and 5 different high-level prospects who carried out properly on the prestigious AAU match and are potential future NBA gamers to observe.
Columbus High School (Miami), Class of 2025
Boozer is the son of former NBA participant Carlos Boozer and stormed on to the scene final fall alongside his twin brother, Cayden. Cameron is the early favourite to be the No. 1 participant in his class and appeared the half throughout Peach Jam.
His physique is already beginning to fill out and he strikes properly together with his 6-foot-8 body, with none stiff motion, and already has good footwork in the lane. When taking part in alongside different gamers in his class, he seems to be like a man amongst boys and bullies his solution to the rim with ease.
At just 15 years outdated, it is too early to attract NBA comparisons, but when he continues to develop his perimeter sport and faucet into his pure really feel in the paint, he’ll be a participant on a lot of groups’ radars if and when the one-and-done rule is eradicated in time for his draft eligibility.
Duke, Florida State, Miami and Michigan are all in early for Boozer, with Duke head coach Jon Scheyer and two assistants and head Michigan coach Juwan Howard watching him constantly final week.
Montverde Academy (Florida), Class of 2025
No participant blew up on the scene fairly like Flagg. Originally from Newport, Maine, the 6-foot-9 wing caught the attention of Power Five coaches through the first session of Nike’s EYBL in April. His first high-major presents got here from Iowa and Duke. Michigan, UCLA and West Virginia shortly adopted.
Similar to Boozer, Flagg additionally performs alongside his twin brother, Ace, making it a distinctive dynamic every time the pair is on the courtroom. With his measurement, Cooper is ready to maneuver in the lane simply round defenders. He loves going through up, drawing the protection shut and stepping by means of to make the transfer in the paint. He has a easy exterior jumper that makes him a menace on the wing and pick-and-pop and may knock down 3-pointers with ease.
He’s most disruptive on the defensive finish, the place he recorded 11 blocks in a single sport at Peach Jam. His timing in the put up and the best way he chases down gamers in transition makes him top-of-the-line rim protectors in highschool basketball, no matter class.
“You can already inform at a younger age, the sport comes really easy for him,” one NBA scout informed Yahoo Sports. “He’s already an elite rim protector, has good taking pictures mechanics and, once more, it is nonetheless early, however that is a stable benchmark for Flagg for all of us seeing him for the primary time.”
Grand Blanc East (Michigan), Class of 2025
McKinney is the primary highschool freshman Juwan Howard has ever supplied at Michigan and it comes with good cause. McKinney is a full canine on the courtroom and has a stable, robust body at 6-foot-4. NBA scouts lined the small fitness center to see him play a number of occasions and had been impressed with the best way he creates separation off the dribble and his excessive basketball IQ for such a younger guard.
“I just wish to present all of the coaches and scouts that I’m versatile and I can play any spot on the ground and influence the sport on each side,” McKenney informed Yahoo Sports.
McKinney already has a handful of high-major presents, together with Michigan, Michigan State, Illinois, Texas, Arizona State, Ohio State and Missouri. Projected top-three participant in the 2023 NBA draft, Scoot Henderson, traveled to North Augusta to observe McKenney play and the 2 have plans to get in the fitness center and work out this summer season.
Other notable prospects NBA scouts had been watching
Justin Edwards, Class of 2023
A 6-foot-7 small ahead, Edwards is likely one of the finest transitional defenders, no matter class, together with his lengthy wingspan and athleticism. The incoming senior lately dedicated to Kentucky and can be becoming a member of five-star guards Rob Dillingham and Reed Sheppard. Edwards averaged 16.3 factors and 7 rebounds throughout Peach Jam, together with his finest sport the place he scored in any respect three ranges, ending with 24 factors (8-for-14 from the sphere).
DJ Wagner, Class of 2023
Wagner is the son of former NBA participant DaJuan Wagner and the grandson of Milt Wagner. DJ has been a high participant in his class since he hit the scene in eighth grade and stays on the highest gamers heading into his senior yr. The 6-foot-3 combo guard likes to get downhill and is artful in the lane. His exterior shot continues to be an space of growth however he nonetheless finds inventive methods to attain with the ball in his arms. Wagner averaged 15.6 factors and 4.5 assists per sport final week and continues to be undecided, together with his high faculties being Kentucky, Memphis and Louisville.
Simeon Wilcher, Class of 2023
Wilcher is likely one of the finest decision-makers on the courtroom with the ball in his arms and is a robust guard whose first step has improved. The five-star level guard dedicated to North Carolina final October and is wanting like the right participant to step in and fill Caleb Love’s sneakers as soon as he makes the bounce to the league. Wilcher is a 6-foot-4 guard out of New Jersey and utterly dominated the Peach Jam, averaging 19.2 factors (53.8 % from the sphere) and 5.2 assists per sport.
Dylan Harper, Class of 2024
Harper is the son of five-time NBA champion Ron Harper and averaged 15.5 factors, 4.7 assists at Peach Jam. He’s so robust with the ball in the lane and has nice physique management across the rim, absorbing contact from opposing forwards. For a participant his age, he seamlessly finds the open man if he attracts a second defender off a display screen, and he throws correct pocket passes to collapsing gamers when driving baseline. Scouts had been inspired by his reads off the wing and the best way he let the sport come to him, not forcing something.
GG Jackson, Class of 2023
Jackson lately de-committed from North Carolina and selected to reclassify up a grade and is now headed to South Carolina in a yr. Jackson was the No. 1 participant in the 2024 highschool class earlier than making the bounce this summer season and appeared assured taking part in alongside older, stronger gamers in 17U for CP3, Chris Paul’s AAU staff. Jackson continues to be a uncooked 6-foot-9 ahead who’s a stable rim protector and some of the thrilling gamers in the open courtroom with the best way he runs the wing at his measurement. Jackson nonetheless has a ton of room for development and was a prospect that intrigued a lot of NBA scouts who watched him play.