The Nike Peach Jam finals are without a doubt the top team event of the summer, with 24 teams battling for the title of champions of the Nike EYBL!
And this year’s edition, may have settled who coming out of the summer, may be the top player in the Class of 2017, as 6-9 rising senior Michael Porter led his Mo-Kan Elite squad to the championship in a 93-65 victory over the New York based PSA Cardinals. Porter, who is transferring to Seattle, WA Nathan Hale, scored a game high 33 points and pulled down 6 rebounds going 12-16 from the field including 5 for 6 from three point land. He received solid support from 6-2 point guard Trae Young, who made a top ten statement out of his play, scoring 28 points and dishing out 11 assists in the final versus one of the top points in the class in Quade Green. Young was deadly from the field hitting 9 of 15 shots including 6 of 10 from beyond the arc earning him consideration for the top point guard spot in the 2017 class. He was tough on defense too, holding Green to just nine points in the championship game.
Porter was stellar throughout the Championship play in North Augusta, averaging 26.4 points (#3 overall) and 11.4 rebounds (#4 overall) at the Peach Jam. He faced off against Top fifteen talent Brian Bowen in the quarterfinals scoring 31 points and 14 boasrds, went for 25 points and 13 rebounds versus DeAndre Ayton in the semifinals, and then finished with his stellar performance in the finals versus Mohamed Bamba in the finals. Ayton and Bamba have both been rated number one nationally by various services, but after Porter’s performance in North Augusta it would appear he will emerge at the end of the summer rated at the top of the class of 2017’s rankings!
Make no mistake that Ayton was strong throughout the event averaging 21.6 points (#7 overall) and 12.8 rebounds (#2 overall), but was outplayed by Porter in the semis. Bamba pulled down 11.4 boards and outing (#5 overall) and dominated defensively with 2.4 blocks (#2 overall), but struggled to handle Porter’s strength and ability to score both outside and at the rim in the finals.
Young won the battle for top guard in North Augusta, but we expect both to be rated in our top ten natinally this fall, they were flat out that good all week!
We will take a look at more of the top players at the Peach Jam in coming columns, as we begin our coverage of the top Grassroots events this summer right here at TheBasketballChannel.net