As Matt has stated oh so many times, the great part about the KSR crew attending the Peach Jam is figuring out who Cal and Co. has in their crosshairs. We have learned many new names since this past weekend- Luke Kennard and Angel Delgado most importantly- but the name that I am most concerned with is the 7-footer in the Class of 2016, Mr. Thon Maker. Pronounced like the ladies lingerie, Mr. Maker originally called Sudan his home, before attending school in Australia where the sport of basketball eventually led him to good ole U-S and A. Now I know Matt can say some crazy things, but when Matt describes someone as “the future of basketball”, I listen.
If you ever visit any large AAU Tournaments, it’s easy to notice the couple of teams that have a few giant 7 footers from Africa (the only time I was ever dunked on was by one of these guys playing for Indiana Elite; it wasn’t too embarrassing). Usually these guys bring much more bark than bite, lacking coordination and the physical presence to maneuver in the post. While Thon may still consider his game to be more finesse at the moment, comparing his game as Kevin Durant-like to Jeff Borzello, Maker he knows that he needs to learn how to bang with the best, “That’s not what I’m trying to do right now; I’m trying to work my way inside first, get the aggressiveness part down.” The best way to learn how to bang with the best, is by competing against the best. In the Peach Jam Final, Maker held his own playing a level-up, scoring 15 points while blocking 2 shots and grabbing 10 rebounds against Cliff Alexander and Jahlil Okafor. I’d be impressed with that stat line against his fellow Sophomores to-be, but against 2 of the Top Seniors in the nation? *Mind Blown*
Maker has plenty of time for his body and game to mature, but that hasn’t stopped some of the nation’s top schools from recruiting him. He currently has offers from Arizona and Virginia Tech, but has garnished attention from all of the major programs, including Kentucky. Even though there will be a few years before Thon MAKES a decision (punny, no?), it doesn’t hurt that he’s been a Kentucky fan since he started playing basketball in Australia, telling Rivals’ Justin Rowland, “I watch them, I know that for sure,” Maker said. “Their star players are good and they produce pros, that’s another positive.” The impact of #BBN really is everywhere, and now the Cats have a potential superstar that could be one of the first to play in the New Rupp Arena. With a thong maker on the team, I wouldn’t mind Victoria’s Secret Rupp Arena.
Check out highlight’s from Thon’s performance entering his Freshman season at Adidas Nations, where he received some personal praise from NBA
whiny baby Superstar Center Dwight Howard.