Some teenage phenoms, such as LeBron James, live up to the insane hype assigned to them, while others end up like Freddy Adu.
The world will be watching to see how 15-year-old hoopster Emoni Bates handles the pressure — because he’s already being compared to one of the best ever.
“In the best freshman conversation, he’s 1,” a veteran of the grassroots basketball scene told ESPN.com. “He’s better than LeBron as a freshman. Bron was good, real good. Emoni is dominant.”
“He has a chance to be ahead of LeBron. I’ve never seen a better freshman,” a longtime scout told the website. “He’s a prospect that’s dominant as a ninth-grader. That’s rare. Normally prospects are guys with high upside or potential that you haven’t fulfilled. His potential is high, but he’s doing it now.”
Bates, a native of Ypsilanti, Mich., is a 6-foot-8 forward ranked as the top prospect in the class of 2022. As another youth basketball observer explained to ESPN, Bates has “size, skill, killer mentality, shooting ability,” a combination the person has never seen out of a player Bates’ age.
The rising sophomore led Lincoln High School in Michigan to its first state title last season and dazzled at the Nike Peach Jam amateur showcase last month, averaging 32.3 points, 10 rebounds and four assists per game.
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SOURCE: The New York Post, Justin Tasch