[Read Full Article] Boost Mobile Elite 24: Scouting Reports (Part One) September 6, 2011
One of the few committed players in attendance at the 2011 Boost Mobile Elite 24, Marcus Paige (#29 Scout, #28 ESPN, #41 Rivals) showed a smooth, well-rounded offensive game and a tremendous basketball IQ that didn't account for many highlights, but offered an impressive glimpse of things to come for the young point guard.
From a physical standpoint, Paige doesn't stand out among the other guards in this class at first glance. Showing an underdeveloped frame at this stage, the Iowa native had a difficult time dealing with the size and strength of the NBA players he matched up with during the late night scrimmage.
What Paige does have, is a degree of sneakiness to his athleticism that complements the rest of his game. The UNC commit may not rise up often to dunk on opponents on his forays through the paint, but he has a quick first step, sets up his drives well with fakes, knows when to push the ball in transition, and has the ability to change gears to create separation. He is very crafty with the ball in his hands on the offensive end, showing the ability to create for himself and others off the bounce. A traditional point guard who shows good vision and decision-making, Paige has the demeanor and skill set to become a fine distributor.
On top of his passing ability, Paige is also a competent scorer. He has a smooth left-handed jump shot that he can knock down with range off the catch and off of one or two dribbles from the midrange. A fundamentally sound offensive player, he doesn't force the issue very often, balancing his scoring and passing responsibilities and understanding that his lack of strength is a limiting factor when he tries to finish at the rim.
On the defensive end, Paige does a good job getting in the passing lanes and forcing turnovers. He isn't the biggest or longest player around, but shows consistent intensity and made himself surprisingly pesky matching up with his peers. He'll need to gain weight to consistently defend stronger guards at the next level, but there's no question that he has the basketball IQ and mentality needed to defend within a team concept.
One of the more polished guards we saw at the Boost Mobile Elite 24, Paige's physical profile will be an x-factor for his prospects long-term. He has the skill set, intangibles, and intelligence to flourish as the leader of UNC's fast break, but his ability to match-up physically with point guards at the NCAA level is something to keep an eye on. [Read Full Article]