7-3 center Shagari Alleyne of Rice High School in New York City is rumored to have given a verbal commitment to Kentucky. Look for a verification soon.
They Got themselves a Dikembe Mutombo / Kareem Clone!
The buzzer sounded for a substitution and he stepped on the floor for Rice (NY) at the Slam Dunk to the Beach, all of the fans took notice. How could you not notice this kid? He's 7'3, he has some of the longest arms, biggest feet and largest hands you've ever seen. Ever. "Circus freak," yelled one fan, and "he looks like a giraffe," whispered another . Alleyne looked a bit nervous entering the game for the first time, repetitively tucking his jersey into his shorts over and over -- and over. The big fella was totally out of position on the first few trips down the floor, standing around on the wings, seeming to be lost in front of the capacity crowd. To make matters worse -- his coach was barking orders, right and left at Alleyne, which seemed to only cause more confusion.
Then things changed.
Alleyne, the lanky youngster swatted a shot in the paint-- causing the crowd who had just adopted him as a favorite -- to erupt with excitement. Then he caught a pass in traffic on offense and slammed it home. He slammed it home while jumping a mere two inches off the floor or perhaps he was only on his tip-toes? After a few more blocks, some impressive dunks and a couple of soft shots near the hoop -- the whole game had changed. The Berkmar squad that was once ahead, was now losing and most importantly -- they were afraid to take the ball to the hole.
Alleyne, only a sophomore had gained control of the game, he had changed the thinking patterns of the Berkmar forwards and best of all -- he was leading his team to victory on both ends of the floor. It had become a complete domination. Rice pulled the come-from-behind upset over Berkmar, a Georgia powerhouse team, by a count of 73-63. Alleyne's impressive stat line totaled 18 points, 13 rebounds and 9 blocks. He had officially arrived as a legit prospect in front of the media, scouts and more importantly the college coaches.
Check out his hands
The last time that we had a chance to see Alleyne, he was a very uncoordinated 7'2 freshman playing AAU ball at the Bob Gibbons' TOC and despite his imposing height, he was not much of a factor. After each of his games at the TOC, it wasn't uncommon to hear the other kids poking fun at the thin giant as he walked off the floor with his head down and goggles in hand.
Our observations of Alleyne's size 23 feet and huge hands have us believing that he may top off at nearly 7'6 or even taller. Check out the photos of Alleyne's feet and his hands (pictured) as compared to a 6'2 adult male who can palm a basketball.
So -- call him a circus freak, call him a giraffe or call him a giant string bean, call him whatever you wish -- but it's a safe bet that this prospect from New York will play in the NBA one day.
I think Alleyne has a taller basketball height (standing reach) than Yao which means that he actually plays taller than his listed height of 7,3" whereas Yao plays shorter than his listed height of 7,5". BTW, does Yao actually have the highest standing reach in the NBA currently?