Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Travis Leslie is Impressive

This guy will help.


The Hoops Report has a nice video of Leslie.

The video contains several above the rim plays, blocked shots, one and two-handed slams. Leslie has big ups.

Leslie is a deer running up and down the court. He has a great post-up game for a small forward, and he works hard on the offensive and defensive boards.

The part that surprised me was to see him use his left hand. He also shows some crafty shots off the glass.

I'm thinking that Leslie is a big-time sleeper. Not that he was an unknown, but that he wasn't ranked nearly high enough. For example, Rivals had Leslie slotted as the 117th best player in the country. In comparison, Tony Woods was ranked #20.

As I posted previously, when Leslie and Columbia High played Tony Woods and the Rome High School Wolves, Leslie had a huge game. He went for 30 pts, while Woods managed only 14. I know that Woods is a big man and ranking-wise probably benefitted from the thought that he has higher pro potential, but the head-to-head game suggests that there shouldn't be such a large disparity in their relative positions on the Rivals 150. We'll see how both players develop this year.

Justin Young alluded once to the fact that Leslie needed to work on his perimeter skills. Scout.com notes perimeter shooting as an area in which Leslie needs to improve.

I remember that Coach Felton had Mike Mercer practice shooting the ball with just one hand. Right under the basket, then moving out a couple of steps, a couple of steps more, and so forth until Mercer was behind the three-point line. Maybe that same drill might be useful for Leslie.

If Leslie demonstrates the ability to consistently score the basketball out to 15- 17 feet, he will be tough to keep out of the starting five.

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