The Myrtle Beach Invitational hosted 8 teams and featured several NBA prospects. Baylor defeated Villanova in the final in a competitive game, and Mississippi State defeated host Coastal Carolina in the 3rd place game.
Each year there are collegiate prospects that emerge from the late-November tournaments, and this year was no different. These tournaments, many of which are still getting underway, usually host over 40 NBA scouts like the Myrtle Beach Invitational did. Here are the draft takeaways from the 2019 Myrtle Beach Invitational:
- Jeremiah Robinson-Earl started hot by displaying his excellent instincts, rebounding, and defensive upside in the first game versus Middle Tennessee State, and continued to showcase his skills throughout the weekend. Robinson-Earl was far and away the best prospect to step foot on the court, proving that he can do virtually everything on the basketball court. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl has the potential to serve a Draymond Green role, but is a better athlete and better shooter, but is a drop-off below Draymond Green as a prospect. However, he still projects to be a plus defender and will be an important piece for Villanova this season. Robinson-Earl’s draft position as of now should project to be a top 10-15 player in this draft. Prospects generally do not come into the NCAA with this level of refined skill while also showing so much upside. For the tournament, Jeremiah Robinson-Earl averaged 13 PPG, 9.7 RPG, and 3 APG on shooting splits of 56/50/67.
- Bryan Antoine made his season debut in the Myrtle Beach Invitational. He looked a little rusty, but his shot shows promise with some refining. He must play under more composure and make smarter plays, primarily on the defensive end, to earn a bigger role on the team.
- Collin Gillespie seems to have brought himself onto the scene as a prospect. He showed off his quickness, shooting ability, and playmaking throughout the tournament. He also showed an excellent ability to break down defenses with his dribble drive penetration each game. The only area where Gillespie struggled was when he was matched up against larger players with excellent quickness for their size, particularly against Baylor. Gillespie averaged 20 PPG, 7.3 APG, 1.7 RPG, and 1 SPG on shooting splits of 55/43/86 in the Myrtle Beach Invitational.
- Reggie Perry headlines Mississippi State’s roster, following a successful FIBA U19 tournament. In the Myrtle Beach Invitational Reggie Perry averaged 17 PPG on 63% shooting and 75% from 3. Particularly against Coastal Carolina, his spot up shooting was impressive and he showed that he can consistently knock down open jump shots. Perry came away as one of the very clear winners of the tournament in terms of prospect status, and should continue to rise on draft boards. Perry has a good chance of being a first round draft pick in June.
- Robert Woodard emerged as a prospect as he continued his hot start to the season. Even against Tulane where his stats didn’t jump out, he was able to make his presence known. Against Villanova he frequently showed off his elite explosiveness and an improved jump shot.
- Another Mississippi State prospect that emerged was Iverson Molinar. A four star freshman native to Panama, Molinar showed off his scoring abilities and has put himself on the NBA radar. His shooting ability is excellent for a freshman, and should continue to thrive in that area. He also has a sweet floater that he can use to be a giant slayer at the next level. Look for Molinar to continue rising as the season progresses. One thing to watch with Molinar is how his minutes, touches, and production change once Nick Weatherspoon returns to the team.
- Jared Butler continues to impress to start the season, showing off an improved shooting form, continued success as a slasher, and being one of the best in the nation at playing with his head up. Despite a low release on his jump shot, he has a quick release and gets a clean follow through. Butler led Baylor to winning the Myrtle Beach Invitational by averaging 18 PPG, 3.7 APG, 2 RPG, and 2.7 SPG with just 1.7 TOPG on shooting splits of 49/47/1.000
- Both Gach of Utah displayed his shooting stroke and some ability to create off the dribble. As the lone NBA prospect on Utah and key to the offense, Gach faced many double teams and will continue to face double teams as the year goes on. In those situations, he needs to make smarter reads and allow the game to slow down in order to make better decisions. Additionally, his drives against Coastal Carolina were reckless and even got him benched in the first half. Gach best projects to be a 3 point specialist at the next level.
- Keishawn Brewton, a junior college transfer for Coastal Carolina, impressed me throughout the tournament with his 3 point shooting. He made some difficult shots, but more importantly made simple spot up shots with a quick release. He averaged 15 points per game, and although he went 0/6 in the 3rd place game vs Mississippi State, he still shot 48% from 3 throughout the tournament. Brewton is unlikely to be drafted, but his shooting will make him a prospect for at least the summer league down within the next 2 years.