2019 a WEAK Class? Playoff Predictions! Podcast Goes HARD!
National Grassroots Editor
Ronnie has evaluated basketball talent for 20 years and has over 15 years of experience in publishing, editing and managing high school sports websites for companies such as Student Sports, ESPN and Ballislife. Ronnie compiles the FAB 50 National Team Rankings while serving as an account manager and consultant for grassroots event run by Ballislife and other companies, in addition to serving as a color commentator on high school broadcasts.
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In the twelfth episode of our all-new “In The Paint Show,“ hosts Ronnie Flores and Devin Ugland break down the upcoming CIF Southern Section championship games, grade NBA All-Star weekend in Charlotte and explain why this is the most wide open race for national player of the year (Mr. Basketball USA).
The fellas talk about the disappointment of only being able to watch two of 10 section title games because of schedule and venue realities, and offer their predictions on all the games, including a detailed look at the two big CIFSS title games: FAB 50 No. 11 Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.) and upstart Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.) in the Open Division and Santa Margarita (Calif.) vs. Chino Hills (Calif.) in Division I.
Sierra Canyon thrives versus smaller teams and is hungry to win the section crown after losing in the title game last year. Bishop Montgomery, meanwhile, is looking to win its third open crown in five years after reaching the title game as the eighth seed in a eight-team pool play format. The Knights are smaller than Sierra Canyon, but Bishop Montgomery is just getting healthy and has plenty of experience players. What will give?
2018 Cal-Hi Sports Mr. Basketball Onyeka Okongwu of Chino Hills is a big game performer and has been at his best in the post-season, compiling a 25-2 record in four post-seasons, so far. Can BYU-bound Shengzhe Li slow down the Big O? Can Li stay out of foul trouble and can the Okongwu thrive yet again under pressure with four fouls as he’s done many times? The fellas break it all down!
Ron and Dev go Hard in the Paint on why the NBA Skills Challenge is really not about skill and what can be done to make NBA All-Star Weekend a better product. Will Zion Williamson, already the favorite to win the 2020 NBA Dunk Contest, go against former champions and standouts like Zach LaVine and Aaron Gordon? Is dunking from the top stars what the league needs to re-energize its show?
Six candidates for Mr. Basketball USA, which honors the national player of the year at season’s end, who received first place votes as the front-runner for the prestigious honor. Is it normal to have that many candidates still in the race by this time of the season? Is the tracker panel and other national scouts down on the 2019 national class? Can Evan Mobley of FAB 50 No. 24 Rancho Christian (Temecula, Calif.), who compiled the most first-place votes (3 of 10) earn the honor despite being a 2020 player? Is Arizona-bound Nico Mannion the most overlooked national player of the year type-talent? Is is because he re-classified up from the 2020 class?
The fellas go hard on plenty of topics this week, so make sure to give our Pod a listen below and share it with friends!
To learn more about our hosts, Ronnie Flores and Devin Ugland, and to get more information about what “In The Paint” is all about, check out our intro below!