Last year, the likes of Jamal Murray, Jalen Poyser, and Thon Maker put their talents on display inside the Mattamy Athletic Centre at the inaugural BioSteel All-Canadian Basketball Game. It was a big step for Canada Basketball, and it was a huge success.
On the heels of last year’s success, the game is back and the hype surrounding the event has been outstanding. The 24-player roster is loaded with talent from all over the country, and has a few top recruits in the next couple of years.
The one player that fans will have their eyes on will be Maker. The big man declared for the NBA Draft without having played a single game in the NCAA, so the NBA has some deliberating to do in determining his eligibility.
He has a unique skill set for a player of his size. He can shoot the ball from three point range, and he can also dominate in the paint on both ends of the floor.
Outside of Maker, there are other talented players people need to be aware of on Monday night inside the Goldring Centre for High Performance Sport.
Here are three other players you will want to keep an eye on:
Justin Jackson (Ajax, ON; The Hill Academy)
The UNLV Runnin’ Rebels‘ commit is widely considered one of the best prospects coming out of Canada this season. The 6’7” forward put his talents on display for Team World at the Nike Hoop Summit last week, and is looking to put on a good showing for his Canadian fans on Monday.
He has the size to be an impact player at the next level. He is long and athletic, which will allow for him to execute in the paint. Jackson also has the shooting ability to stretch the floor and create match-up problems for his opponents. Next season, Jackson will look to be an impact player for a rebuilding Rebels team.
Koby McEwen (Toronto, ON; Wasatch Academy)
McEwen has committed to the Utah State Aggies for next season, and will be an opponent of Jackson’s in the Mountain West for the foreseeable future, which will be exciting for all Canadian fans to watch.
Standing at 6’3”, McEwen brings some size to the back court. He is a highly effective scoring guard, as he can make shots from all over the floor. He isn’t afraid to drive to the basket for tough shots amongst the forwards, and he can also knock down long jumpers with confidence and consistency. Look for McEwen to control the offense for his team, while also providing an offensive spark from all over the floor.
Jaelin Llewellyn (Mississauga, ON; Orangeville Prep)
On the first night of the event, Llewellyn put everyone on notice with his performance in the BioSteel All-Canadian Slam Dunk Contest presented by BMO. He threw down three impressive dunks, landing two perfect scores of ’50’ in the process.
His final dunk, which was a lob to himself off the wall behind the basket for a reverse slam, got the crowd on their feet and left them wanting more. Luckily for them, and us included, we get to see more of Llewellyn on Monday night. It will be interesting to see what he has for an encore performance in the actual game on Monday night, but he’s worth keeping a close eye on as the event unfolds.
Three others to keep an eye on:
Matur Maker (Perth, West Australia; Athlete Institute)
Isiaha Mike (Toronto, ON; Trinity Int’l Prep (NY))
Godwin Boahen (Toronto, ON; The Hill Academy)