One of the premier tournaments of the season tipped of this past weekend with The Real Deal in the Rock.
The Memphis Thunder Elite and the Nashville Celtics both shined bright in the 15 and under division moving into the final eight before losing in the quarter-finals.
in a very tough battle the Memphis Thunder Elite fell to the eventual champions the Arkansas Hawks. Jamerio Jones (Melrose), Tim Shaw (Memphis Central) and Fatodd Lewis (Raleigh-Egypt) played very well the entire weekend for the Thunder.
Marcanius Hymon (Whitehaven) and Chris Jefferson (Melrose) were also sighted for their defensive efforts during the event.
The Nashville Celtics had an outstanding run sweeping through pool play and winning their first bracket game before falling in the elite eight. Daniel Norl (Kenwood) was a deadeye from outside knocking down three's and keeping the Celtics in almost every game. Marcus Graves (Ravenwood) played outstanding using his quickness and passing ability to get everyone involved in the offense. Jaylen Barford (Southside) is a bright and shining light in this class, his game keeps getting better and he will be someone to watch for the next few seasons. Nacarius Fant (Kentucky) was very steady according to onlookers on both sides of the ball and big Brandon Donaldson (Henry County) turned some heads with his size and quick moves.
The Nashville Stallions made some noise of their own finishing second in their pool at 2-1 and advancing to play in the bracket round before falling to a very good Texas Hotshots squad. Emmanuel Smith (Oakland) was outstanding all weekend for the Stallions and proved he is one of the best players in the state in the Class of 2014.
Charles Macon (LaVergne), Tony Smith (FRA) and Marquis Johns (Smyrna) were also mentioned for their solid efforts in helping the team advance this weekend.
Imani Miller (Austin East) is fast moving up the rankings in the Class of 2014 and his efforts this weekend at the Real Deal are living proof of this. The Austin East freshman was a beast helping lead Tennessee Chosen Few into the championship bracket after a second place pool finish.
The TCF fell to the Worldwide Renegades in bracket action. Zak Carter (Hardin Valley) and Justin Simmons (Stone Memorial) had great weekends as well.
The Memphis Magic came to play finishing the event at 3-2. The Magic were in a three-way tie for the pool championship but lost out on point differential. Ladarius Chester (Melrose), Reggie Anthony (Melrose) and Keon Peoples (Ridgeway) were lauded for their outstanding efforts for the Magic.
Team Corey Brewer finally came together in their final pool play effort winning against a very solid squad. Cameron Miller (Siegel), Ryan Jones (Siegel), Charles Clark (Siegel) and Jacob Williams (Wilson Central) all had huge contributions for Team CB.