The New Year’s Slam took place in Phoenix, AZ from Friday, January 28th through Sunday, January 30th. The event, hosted by Team Cezers consisted of teams from 4th grade through 8th, with games taking place at the Apex Pyramid and…
The New Year’s Slam took place in Phoenix, AZ from Friday, January 28th through Sunday, January 30th. The event, hosted by Team Cezers consisted of teams from 4th grade through 8th, with games taking place at the Apex Pyramid and the Phhacility. The event featured several prospects from the class of 2028, 2027, and 2026. It also featured several players with the ability to create for themselves and teammates. In this article, we take a look at some of the top Playmakers from the event.
Tristen Rhodes 5’6 PG Arizona Storm 2026 – Crafty guard with the ability to create for teammates off the bounce. Rhodes has a quick first step and was most effective breaking down defenders drawing two and delivering. The 5’6 PG also showed a knack for knocking down the 3 in catch and shoot situations.
Brayden Newton 5’11 PG Arizona Storm 2026 – Newton was at his best when out in transition. He’s deceptively quick, and put tremendous pressure on defenders, knocking down the open three, finishing in transition, or delivering on time and on target dimes to teammates.
Rocket Schwertley 6’4 PF Monstarz 2026 – Rare that a big makes the Playmaker list, but Schwertley is a rare talent. He consistently made the correct decision and showed that making the easy play, is a winning play. The forward had several hockey assists, keeping the ball moving, while willingly making the next pass. His unselfish play helped the Monstarz take home the 8th-grade gold crown.
Walter Hennix 5’6 PG SE Supreme 2029 (featured image) – Hennix was a problem this weekend. Playing up two grades was no issue for the guard. He’s a natural playmaker who displayed a high IQ. Hennix was one of the top blow-by players at the event, getting paint touches collapsing the defense before hitting teammates with dimes. The 5th grader controlled the pace for his team, leading his squad to the 7th-grade silver title.
Jayvein Moody 5’2 PG Monstarz 2027 – Moody was another one of the playmakers who excelled in the Monstarz system. The lefty slasher was able to create for teammates off paint touches. When left open he displayed good shooting ability, knocking down corner threes in catch and shoot action.
Grant Mattingly 5’9 SF Monstarz 2027 – Mattingly is a versatile wing that displayed several skills. He was accurate from 3 in catch-and-shoot situations from the top of the key. The wing was a willing passer, that helped facilitate the offense, hitting ahead to start transition breaks, and swinging the ball quickly against the zone.
Kendall Stapelton PG AZ Gremlins 2028 – Stapelton was one of the better defenders, proving that sometimes you can be a playmaker on defense. He used quick hands to disrupt ballhandlers and turned defense into offense, assisting to teammates in transition.